Devotion: Simple True Love of God

Kari’s article introduces us to St. Francis de Sales, a doctor of the Church and author of the spiritual  masterpiece, Introduction to the Devout  Life. It just so happens that Fr. Patrick’s brother, Fr. John, wrote a book, Lift Up  Your Heart, that brings St. Francis’ classic ten meditations into present day language  and thought.  

In the book’s introduction, Fr. John  admits he was “half asleep” and “unable to  awaken within myself that rich movement  of grace that opens the eyes of the heart to  the deeper realities of human existence.” It was then he “stumbled” upon St. Francis’  book, which changed his life.

He goes on to explain the reason St.  Francis penned his book in 1609 was to  help people to “embrace a more vibrant and authentic imitation of Christ, which he calls ‘the devout life’.

Devotion as he speaks of it, ‘is simply true love of God.’” 

Fr. John continues, “God created  humanity out of love and for the sake of love. In loving, and loving correctly  – not according to the demands of the world but the ways of Jesus Christ – the human heart finds its rest, true peace and  happiness.”  

The faith journey is all about the  disposition of the heart and where it is aimed. Does it crave the promise of  eternal life in heaven or does it wander through life looking for relief in worldly, but finite, comforts?  

St. Francis de Sales composed the ten meditations to re-orient the human heart  straight to heaven. Fr. John’s version  simply updates St. Francis’ thoughts in an easy-to-read style with beautiful imagery.  Either book assists the heart and mind on the lifelong quest of finding one’s intentional place in God’s divine plan.  

Written by: Tobey Neuberger


You can purchase a copy of Fr. John Burn’s book on Amazon.