Presence of God – O Jesus, help me to hide from creatures in order to enter into intimacy with You.
When we speak of the hidden life of Jesus, we do not mean only His self-effacement in the eyes of men, from whom He concealed His divinity, thus avoiding their praise. Besides these exterior relations with creatures, we must penetrate into the secret places of His heart where, hidden from human eyes, another life goes on, a secret one of much greater sublimity. It is His interior life, a life of intimacy with the Trinity. Jesus’ sacred soul, personally united to the Word, unceasingly enjoys the Beatific Vision. It sees the Word, the subject of all its activity. It sees the Father, the cause of its Being. It sees the Holy Spirit, who dwells in it as “His chosen temple,” and who, by covering it with the flame of His love, draws it toward God in the perfect accomplishment of His will. Exteriorly Jesus lives with men, deals with them as if He were one of them, but His real life, His existence as the Son of God, is lived hidden from all human sight, with the Trinity and in the Trinity. The imitation of Jesus’ hidden life has for its ultimate end the participation in His interior life; that is, to be hidden “with Christ in God,” in order to enter with Him the sanctuary of the Most Holy Trinity. St. Teresa Margaret expressed this in her ardent desire to “emulate by faith, insofar as it is possible for a creature, the hidden, interior life and activity of the intellect and will of the sacred humanity of Jesus Christ, hypostatically united to the Word” (Spirituality of St. Teresa Margaret of the Heart of Jesus).
The practice of the hidden life has, therefore, two aspects: the first, negative and mostly exterior, consists in hiding ourselves from the eyes of others and even from our own and in dying to glory and worldly honors. The second, which is positive and entirely interior, consists in concentrating on God in a life of intimate relations with Him. The first aspect is the condition and measure of the second: the more a soul is able to hide from creatures, and even from itself, the more capable it will be of living “with Christ in God,” according to the beautiful expression of St. Paul: “You are dead: and your life is hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3).
“O Jesus, I wish to strive solely to become a perfect copy of You, and since You lived a hidden life of humiliations, love, and sacrifice, henceforth mine must be the same; therefore I now wish to enclose myself forever in Your most lovable Heart, as in a desert, so as to live there in You, with You, and by You, that hidden life of love and sacrifice…. Since You inspire me to become as much as possible like You, all my efforts will tend toward that end. I shall imitate You especially in those virtues which are most pleasing to Your most lovable Heart—humility and purity of intention, interior as well as exterior—always working with a spirit of simplicity” (St. Teresa Margaret of the Heart of Jesus, Spirituality of St. Teresa Margaret of the Heart of Jesus).
O Jesus, deign to open Your loving Heart to me too, and permit me to take refuge in it, so that I may live hidden in God with You. Exterior things, fame, earthly glory, have no longer any attraction for me; is it not all vanity, a simple succession of circumstances which will soon cease to be? The only life which attracts me and which will last forever, beyond all earthly contingencies, is that of intimate union with You. And this is the great treasure which You offer me by the merits of Your Passion. I contemplate You on the Cross, O Jesus, Your side rent by the lance, as if to tell me that Your death has opened the door of Your Heart to admit me into the sanctuary of Your interior life. Your death has, in fact, grafted my poor human life onto Yours and made it share in Your divine life, a life of intimate relations with the Trinity. This is true living and life eternal! I aspire to it, not by my merits, but by those of Your Passion. O Jesus, grant that I may seek my joy, my good, only in this participation in Your interior life, and put all my glory in it. Yes, let all my glory be within, in the secrecy of my life hidden with You in God.
Note from Dan: This post “To be Hidden with Christ in God” is provided courtesy of Baronius Press and contains one of two meditations for the day. If you would like to get the full meditation from one of the best daily meditation works ever compiled, you can learn more here: Divine Intimacy. Please honor those who support us by purchasing and promoting their products.
Art: St. Teresa Margaret, painted after her 1770 death by Anna Piattoli, meets public domain criteria. Father Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, mirror from open source material.
Editor’s note: This article originally appeared on SpiritualDirection.com and is reprinted here with kind permission.