Home > Books on Spiritual Formation, Spirituality > In possession of a life that has willed only one thing

In possession of a life that has willed only one thing


I started to read Soren Kierkegaard’s Purity of Heart again today. These are the words that begin his book. Life becomes much simpler when they are followed. Philippians 3:8

Father in Heaven! What is man without Thee! What is all that he knows, vast accumulation though it be, but a chipped fragment if he does not know Thee! What is all his striving, could it even encompass the world, but a half-finished work if he does not know Thee: Thee the one, who art one thing and who art all! So may Thou give to the intellect, wisdom to comprehend that one thing; to the heart, sincerity to receive this understanding; to the will purity that wills only one thing. In prosperity may Thou grant perseverance to will one thing; in suffering, patience to will one thing. Oh, Thou that giveth both the beginning and the completion, may Thou early, at the dawn of day, give to the young man the resolution to will one thing. As the day wanes, may Thou give to the old man a renewed remembrance of his first resolution, that the first may be like the last, the last like the first, in possession of a life that has willed only one thing.

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