As Mouroux says, “the heart of the Christian experience is the soul’s movement towards God.” What most characterizes the Christian experience is that it is a constant movement in pursuit of the Last End. Its final goal is unity with God, but “the Last End is situated at infinity and never completely possessed here on earth” so the Christian experience must be a dynamic, continuous movement, toward something that does not have an end in this earthly life.
In order for Christian experience to occur, there must be a foundation and this is “faith working by charity.” Mouroux makes it clear that charity in the Christian experience must have its base in faith, because “faith provides charity with its object.” However, charity does not merely build on the already existing faith, but rather transforms it and makes it active. Likewise, faith cannot complete its orientation and realize its purpose without charity, which is evident as Mouroux quotes Corinthians: “If I should have all faith so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.”
The grace received in baptism is the starting point of faith, and an invitation to the Christian experience: a seed that we are called to nourish and develop in openness and self-gift “beyond any assignable limits.” This is what the Christian experience consists of: a dynamic, continual process of learning to open oneself and give oneself more completely. Initiated in baptism, this process guided and oriented by charity. According to Mouroux, the Christian experience is an integrating experience. This integrating aspect of the Christian experience is led by charity, and is opposed by sin: “sin dissociates, whereas charity unifies… [sin] dissipates desire amongst an endless sequence of passing goods, and shatters the soul upon the rocks of multiplicity” while charity concentrates the soul on the unifying goal — the love of God. Charity guides and leads the soul not to the division and multiplicity produced by sin, but rather to unity by constantly orienting it to God.
The Christian experience is a movement that literally takes us out of ourselves. We can see this through the signs that Mouroux discusses: we conform our will to the rule of the Church – this is right faith; we insert ourselves in the Church and follow the teachings of the Church – this is keeping the Commandments; we humbly recognize our sins and our gifts given by God, seeking forgiveness and glorifying God – this is self-judgment; and above all, our soul inclines towards God, searches for God and rejoices in God – this is the soul’s movement towards God.
All of these signs involve our whole selves: our intellect, our actions, our body, our freedom, our will, but center on God. Therefore, the Christian experience is the continual movement of the soul that starts with faith, is oriented by charity, and consists of a constant death to ourselves and resurrection in Christ. “We can never finish dying to sin that we may live to God.”