Troublesome Topic: A Quote from Calvin Miller regarding Self-denial

Lesson 8 of 14

This quote is from his book about Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. It is called A Requiem for Love, pp. 71 & 72.

These words are placed on the lips of the Father-Spirit regarding the use of self-denial to resist the temptations of the Serpent.

“There is only one real power

That you should long to own: self-denial!

Spend all you have to purchase it.

Lust after chains of servanthood – never thrones of pride.

For servants, worn by willful drudgery,

At last wear diadems.

Bridle all desire: for having what you want,

Will leave you groveling in wantonness.

Feed yourselves with hunger,

Then savor all you slowly eat.

Thus, self-denial will give you richness but keep you from excess.

Use this world, do not consume it.

Never pursue pleasure, rather let it find you…

At the end of every day…

Where you made discipline your friend.

For pleasure never comes in what you hold,

But in what holds on to you – compelling you to care.

Should life call you to be a martyr,

Do not despair

For those who would die for great reasons,

Also find great reasons for their living.

Think not that gaudiness is beauty

But simple ornament

Which lives only to reflect the light around it.

Turn from all desire to have,

Lest what you seek to own,

At last owns you!

Make no hour heavy with double greed

Rather let a giving spirit make you rich with sleek humility

That runs through troubled times.

Grow rich by giving up your purse.

Lay by your mace and rule.

Release your grasp and in your open hand

You’ll find the world.

Die and greet the life-force

Created by your willful death.

For self-denial does empower the soul,

And those who hold their need to rule at bay,

Are kings and queens with empires in their sway.”

The next lesson in the full version of the study on Covenants is: Why Did They Try to Cover Up?