“Why does God passionately pursue us?” by St. Elizabeth of the Trinity

While reading Simeon Leiva-Merikakis’ article on lectio divina, I came across a great quote from St. Elizabeth of the Trinity (click here for an article on her).

Merikakis prefaces this quote by asking some interesting questions:

  • Why does God passionately pursue us?
  • Does God have any “interest” in desiring our creaturely love as relentlessly as we claim He does?
  • To put it almost impertinently: What does God expect to “get” by sharing his being with me?

To answer these questions, he quotes from St. Elizabeth of the Trinity:

  • “It would give immense joy to the heart of God if we would devote ourselves, in the heaven of our soul, to the occupation of the Blessed, and cling to him by the simple contemplation that brings the creature close to the state of innocence in which God had created it. “In his image and likeness” (Gen 1:26): such was the Creator’s dream—to be able to contemplate himself in his creature, to be able to see there all his own perfections and all his own beauty beaming forth as through a pure and flawless crystal. Is this not, in a way, the extension of his own glory? The soul then . . . allows the divine Being to reflect himself in her, and all his attributes are communicated to her. Truly, this soul is a Laudem gloriæ, the praise of the glory of all his gifts; through everything, even the most commonplace acts, she sings the canticum magnum, the canticum novum [of the Apocalypse (Rev 14:3)], and this canticle makes God quiver to his very depths” (Élisabeth de la Trinité, Écrits spirituels, ed. P. Philipon [Paris: Éditions du Seuil, 1948], 211).


We can actually bring “immense joy to the heart of God.” He has a dream for us and our fulfillment of that dream “makes God quiver to his very depths.”

  • “To delight in us, to find joy in us, to see his dream fulfilled in us: this is what was “in it” for God, this is what God so ardently pursues! In the Incarnation and the Cross, the Word sought us out so that he could delight in us… We should never lose sight of the fact that this mutual delight between human beings and God in the person of the Word Incarnate is the goal of all divine and human efforts: delight is the deepest secret inscribed in the very heart of Being itself.  And it is through the doors and windows of the Gospel’s words that we will find our way into the interior abode where we can be with Jesus in God” (447).

Since love is the mutual joy and enjoyment between two persons, here’s a great question to reflect upon.

  • Do you consider “giving joy to God” to be an essential aspect of your human and Christian vocation?

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