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Hospitality – Part 1

I discovered a plethora of quotes in reading Radical Hospitality: Benedict’s Way to Love by Fr. Daniel Homan and Lonni Collins Pratt. Each quote kind of stands on its own, but together they form a picture of Benedictine spirituality. Hospitality is the answer to hostility. Jesus said to love your neighbor; hospitality is how. (Introduction) […]

Be Still

From John Kirvan’s book, Raw Faith: Let nothing disturb you. Let nothing make you afraid. — St. Teresa of Avila It’s amazing how many of us think that being anxious and worried is a sign that we are spiritual, that we are committed, that we are not like everyone else, content to live on the […]

A Key to the Door of Heaven

To him who overcomes I will give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name written which no one knows except him who receives it. (Revelation 2:17) From a chapter on heaven, C.S. Lewis in The Problem of Pain comments: I am considering not how, but why, [God] makes each soul unique. […]

So Much Mercy, Yet Still There Is Hell

From a chapter on hell, C.S. Lewis in The Problem of Pain concludes: The doors of hell are locked on the inside. …They enjoy forever the horrible freedom they have demanded, and are therefore self-enslaved: just as the blessed, forever submitting to obedience, become through all eternity more and more free. In the long run […]

Disequilibrium

Does God change? Did Jesus die on The Cross as atonement for God’s curse of death on humanity?

Points of Light

In the old days, on Easter night, the Russian peasants used to carry the blest fire home from church. The light would scatter and travel in all directions through the darkness, and the desolation of the night would be pierced and dispelled as lamps came on in the windows of the farm houses, one by […]

Can You Drink the Cup?

In Henri Nouwen’s book, Can You Drink the Cup?, the cup of life is a cup of sorrows and a cup of joys. It is a cup of blessings. The cup is your life. You are asked to drink it. Drink it to the bottom. Drinking the cup is not a heroic act with a […]

The Cups of Sorrow and Joy

An excerpt from Henri Nouwen’s book, Can You Drink the Cup?: “Can you drink the cup that I am going to drink?” When Jesus brought this question to John and James, and when they impulsively answered with a big “We can,” he made this terrifying, yet hope-filled prediction: “Very well; you shall drink my cup.” […]

Community is like a mosaic…

Community is like a large mosaic. Each little piece seems so insignificant. One piece is bright red, another cold blue or dull green, another warm purple, another sharp yellow, another shining gold. Some look precious, others ordinary. Some look valuable, others worthless. Some look gaudy, others delicate. As individuals stones, we can do little with […]

Adopted Sons of God

We are not begotten by God, we are only made by Him: in our natural state we are not sons of God, only (so to speak) statues. We have not got ‘Zoe’ or spiritual life: only ‘Bios’ or biological life which is presently going to run down and die. Now the whole offer which Christianity makes is this: that we can, if we let God have His way, come to share a life which was begotten, not made, which has always existed and always will exist. Christ is the Son of God. If we share in this kind of life we also shall be sons of God. We shall love the Father as He does and the Holy Ghost will arise in us. He came into this world and became a man in order to spread to other men the kind of life He has—by what I call ‘good infection’. Every Christian is to become a little Christ. The whole purpose of becoming a Christian is simply nothing more. — C.S. Lewis, from “Mere Christianity”

Are You a Chicken?

Anthony de Mello tells the following story in the forward of his book, Awareness: A man found an eagle’s egg and put it in a nest of a barnyard hen. The eaglet hatched with the brood of chicks and grew up with them. All his life the eagle did what the barnyard chicks did, thinking […]

A Window for the Light

I happened across a web page full of quotes and started to ponder over this one: I don’t want to be rich and famous. I want to be rich and anonymous. — Anonymous My first thought was sure, I wouldn’t mind the money. Who needs the fame if it means paparazzi hounding you and your name […]

Doubts

In an earlier entry, I mentioned something about having doubts. Doubts are funny things. You are never sure about them. (Sorry, pun intended.) But seriously, it is the fact that you are unsure that makes things challenging. I don’t know about you, but my mind craves certainty. I have reached a point in my life […]

Merton on Faith

In my previous entry, I mentioned something about knowing that my faith had nothing to do with my feelings. Thomas Merton, in New Seeds of Contemplation, wrote the following about faith: First of all, faith is not an emotion, not a feeling. It is not a blind subconscious urge toward something vaguely supernatural. It is […]

Every moment…

Every moment and every event of every man’s life on earth plants something in his soul. For just as the wind carries thousands of winged seeds, so each moment brings with it germs of spiritual vitality that come to rest imperceptibly in the minds and wills of men. Most of these unnumbered seeds perish and are lost, because men are not prepared to receive them: for such seeds as these cannot spring up anywhere except in the good soil of freedom, spontaneity and love. — Thomas Merton

Bible in 50 Words

This list has been making the email circuit. It is the Bible condensed down to only 50 words. This list hits upon the Golden Thread that runs throughout the Bible, but at the expense of the beauty in the story. God made Adam bit Noah arked Abraham split Joseph ruled Jacob fooled Bush talked Moses […]

On Choice

This quote about choices by C.S. Lewis, in Mere Christianity, seems applicable to my previous journal entry: People often think that Christian morality as a kind of bargain in which God says, ‘If you keep a lot of rules I’ll reward you, and if you don’t I’ll do the other thing.’ I do not think […]

Interruptions

I have a friend who says that there is no such things as coincidences. Everything happens for a reason. The mathematician inside of me is skeptical with images of probability calculations and statistical charts. I am resistant to ascribe a higher meaning to why I ran into a former student yesterday, but it feels at […]

Loneliness vs. Solitude

I am currently reading the book Reaching Out by Henri J. M. Nouwen. In this book, Nouwen describes three type of movements or spectrums. Nouwen views our spiritual “ascent” as evolving in three movements. The first movement, loneliness to solitude, focuses on the spiritual life as it relates to the experience of our own selves. […]