“To love God with the whole heart, is to have the heart inclined to the love of no one thing more than of God. To love God again with the whole soul is to have the mind stayed upon the truth, and to be firm in the faith. For the love of the heart and the love of the soul are different.” –From “Sermon in a Sentence: A Treasury of Quotations on the Spiritual Life; Vol. 5: St. Thomas Aquinas,” pg. 148. Selected and Arranged by John P. McClernon.
I don’t know that there is much that I can add to our Saint’s words. This little sermon expresses the difference between the love of the heart and the love of the soul, and we must love God firmly with both.
The love of the heart is the love that we speak of most often, I think. Where our heart is, there is our treasure, and if our heart is turned always to God, then God is our treasure. This will show forth in all of our actions and words, and will keep us from falling into sin, for if God is our treasure and the greatest desire of our hearts, how could we be inclined to turn to something lesser in rejection of Him?
The love of the soul is more about holding firm to the faith and to what God has given us. If our hearts are fixed upon God as our treasure, then our minds must be ever fixed on the truth He has given us. If our minds are fixed on the truth, then we will be firm in the faith, loving God with our hearts and with our souls by being ever turned to Him and to His truths.
Let us make good use of the remainder of this Holy Season of Lent by striving to love God not only with our hearts or with our souls, but with both, that we may hold firmly to the Truth that is our treasure and our hope for eternity.