One misconception about the mystics is that they are singularly holy people, set apart from us ordinary Christians by their holiness. Nothing could be further from the truth. Mystics are singular and different because of their mystical experiences, their visions, not their holiness. Holiness is about living in the grace of God, about virtue, especially the virtue of charity, which is available to all; it is not about visions. Holiness is about faith, not knowledge. Holiness is about abiding in faith, hope and charity. And such is available to everyone open to the Holy Spirit. Another misconception is that the mystics are special friends of God, and the rest of us are not. Again, that is not true. We are all special friends of God if we keep God’s commandments. What is unique about the mystics is the revelations they receive. That makes them distinctive persons in the Body of Christ, but no more necessary. As Saint Paul says, there are many gifts of the Spirit, but the most important, and the only essential one, is the one available to all: charity. “Love never ends,” he says. “But as for prophecies, they will come to an end; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will come to an end” (1 Corinthians 13:8).
—from Mystics: Twelve who Reveal God's Love by Murray Bodo