Madame Guyon Quotes
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Jeanne-Marie Bouvier de la Motte-Guyon (commonly known as Madame Guyon) was a French mystic and one of the key advocates of Quietism. Quietism was considered heretical by the Roman Catholic Church, and she was imprisoned from 1695 to 1703 after publishing a book on the topic, A Short and Easy Method of Prayer.
Guyon's parents were very religious people, and they gave her an especially pious training. Other important impressions from her youth that remained with her came from reading the works of St. Francis de Sales, and from certain nuns, her teachers. At one time she wanted to be a nun, but soon changed her mind.
Guyon continued belief in God's perfect plan and that she would be blessed in suffering. To this end she was, when she bore another son and daughter shortly before her husband's death. After twelve years of an unhappy marriage, Madame Guyon had become a widow at the age of 28.
Guyon believed that we should pray all the time, whatever one was doing, to be also spending time with God. As she wrote in one of her poems: "There was a period when I chose, A time and place for prayer ... But now I seek that constant prayer, In inward stillness known ..."
In the Christian dispute regarding grace and works, Guyon defended the controversial belief that salvation is the result of grace, not works. Like St. Augustine, St. Thomas Aquinas, Calvin, and Martin Luther, she thought that a person's deliverance can only come from God as an outside source, never from within the person himself or herself.
Madame Guyon's most devout disciples after her death were to be found among the Protestants and especially the Quakers. Evangelicals such as Spurgeon were also influenced. Her works were translated into English and German, and her ideas, forgotten in France, have been read in Germany, Switzerland, England, and America.
| No one will gain all without having lost all.|
| God gives us gifts, graces, and natural talents, not for our own use, but that we may render them to Him. He takes pleasure in giving and in taking them away, or in so disposing of us, that we cannot enjoy them; but their grand use is to be offered in a continual sacrifice to Him; and by this He is most glorified.|
Topics: Blessings, Gifts, Sacrifice
| To rob God of nothing; to refuse Him nothing; to require of Him nothing; this is great perfection.|
| Let no one ask a stronger mark of an excellent love to God, than that we are insensible to our own reputation.|
Topics: Contentment, Excellence
| The more wants we have, the further we are from God, and the nearer we approach him, the better can we dispense with everything that is not Himself.|
| How can they be delivered from the life of self, who are not willing to abandon all their possessions? How can they believe themselves despoiled of all, who possess the greatest treasure under heaven? Do not oblige me to name it, but judge, if you are enlightened; there is one of them which is less than the other, which is lost before it, but which those who must lose everything have the greatest trouble in parting with.|
| Faith and the cross are inseparable: the cross is the shrine of faith, and faith is the light of the cross.|
Topics: Faith, Holy Spirit, The Cross
| When we suffer aridity and desolation with equanimity, we testify our love to God; but when He visits us with the sweetness of his presence, He testifies his love to us.|
| The creature which can only be by the power of God, cannot exist without Him, and the root of its being, that nothing can come between or cause the slightest separation.|
| Which is the harder lot for a soul that has known and loved God, not to know whether it loves God, or whether God loves it?|
Topics: God, Love
| Which of the two would the perfect soul choose, if the choice were presented, to love God, or to be loved by Him?|
Topics: God, Love
| He that bears the privations of the gifts of God and the esteem of men, with an even soul, knows how to enjoy his Supreme Good beyond all time and above all means.|
Topics: Happiness, Gifts