We tend to divide joy from work.  Our day of work is not our day of joy  -  for that we require a holiday; for, miserable that we are, we cannot find our holiday in our work.  The river finds its holiday in its onward flow, the fire in its outburst of flame, the scent of the flower in its permeation of the atmosphere; but in our everyday work there is no such holiday for us.  It is because we do not let ourselves go, because we do not give ourselves joyously and entirely up to it, that our work overpowers us.
           O Giver of Thyself! At the vision of thee as joy let our souls flame up to thee as the fire, flow on to thee as the river, permeate thy being as the fragrance of the flower.  Give us strength to love, to love fully, our life in its joys and sorrows, in  its gains and losses, in its rise and fall.  Let us have strength enough fully to see and hear thy universe and to work with full vigour therein.  Let us fully live the life thou hast given us, let us bravely take and bravely give.  This is our prayer to thee.  Let us once for all dislodge from our minds the feeble fancy that would make out thy joy to be a thing apart from action, thin, formless, and unsustained.  Wherever the peasant tills the hard earth, there does thy joy gush out in the green of the corn, wherever man…smoothes the stony ground and clears for himself a homestead, there does thy joy enfold it in orderliness and peace.  

In their many different idioms the classical spiritual writers have attempted to throw light on the eternal question of union with God. 
Every month we give you a brief passage from a spiritual classic.