“God is love.” Julian wrote, “And so our soul ought to think that all that God has done was done for it.” God’s love for each of us is infinite, and it is reasonable to say, as she does, that Jesus would have died for each one of us, individually, to have salvation, out of His everlasting love for each of us. If we understand God’s love, Julian wrote, “the love of God unites us to such an extent that when we are truly aware of it, no man can separate himself from another.”
Julian learned most of what she knew about God’s love from meditating upon God’s love. The Bibles, the collections of translations, the Bible study resources on the internet, the libraries, resources we have are staggering compared to the simplicity of what she had. But that is only one side of the picture.
Julian’s meditation and prayer was not distracted by temptation to spend time learning about prayer instead of praying. Nor were her meditations limited by someone pressing her to be simplistic. Even before her illness, she had sought to understand the sufferings of Jesus. She hungered for knowledge, but she hungered more to know God.
In seeking to learn about prayer and meditation, and about the mystics, it is important to do that in context of the understanding that they were great, in part, because they did not spend too much time learning about these things, but rather because they spent time doing them, seeking to know God. We understand people like Julian best when, after we have spent some time learning from them, we set the books down and spend time alone with God.