Do not be dismayed by the brokenness of the world. All things break. And all things can be mended. Not with time, as they say, but with intention. So go. Love intentionally, extravagantly, unconditionally. The broken world waits in darkness for the light that is you.
— L.R. Knost
There is a lovely idea in the Celtic tradition that if you send out goodness from yourself, or if you share that which is happy or good within you, it will all come back to you multiplied ten thousand times. In the kingdom of love there is no competition, there is no possessiveness or control. The more love you give away, the more love you will have.
— John O’Donohue from Anam Cara
Continue reading “I Just Want To Do Love Right …”
Laws and rhythms structured ancient Hebrew culture, forming the basis for Jewish religious practice. Christianity is grounded in the same laws, which serve as moral precepts and as shared commitments that have held communities together for thousands of years. Together these laws create a structure in which human beings can work and live together; they create harmony among human beings and between human beings and God. Continue reading “Desert Day 06: The Law of Love …”
… all I want to say to you is ‘You are the Beloved,’ and all I hope is that you can hear these words as spoken to you with all the tenderness and force that love can hold. My only desire is to make these words reverberate in every corner of your being – ‘You are the Beloved’.
— Henri Nouwen from Life of the Beloved Continue reading “Being the Beloved …”
On the spiritual path, it is not optional to know ourselves. It’s not optional to be willing to make mistakes. Such qualities are essential. They lead to the gradual growth of a person “to maturity, to the measure of the full stature of Christ” (Ephesians 4:13). The reason we sin and suffer is not because we are weak or wrong but simply because we are human. In this school of humanity sin abounds, but grace abounds even more (Romans 5:21). God uses human imperfection to achieve divine perfection; God uses weakness to create strength (2 Corinthians 12:10); God uses humans to create sons and daughters of God. Continue reading “To Everything A Season …”
You have done well
In the contest of madness.
You were brave in that holy war.
You have all the honourable wounds
Of one who has tried to find love
Where the Beautiful Bird
Does not drink.
May I speak to you
Like we are close
And locked away together?
Once I found a stray kitten
And I used to soak my fingers
In warm milk;
It came to think I was five mothers
On one hand.
Why not rest your tired body?
Lean back and close your eyes.
I will kneel by your side and feed you.
I will so gently
Spread open your mouth
And let you taste something of my
Sacred mind and life.
There is something wrong
With your ideas of
O, surely there is something wrong
With your ideas of
If you think
Our Beloved would not be so
— Hafiz (for Jihad) from The Gift
De Mello contrasted this Judgement God with what he called the God of Welcomes. I can still remember him describing God getting excited like a child because you are coming to pray, ‘God has all these angels with golden trumpets. They are to get ready to welcome you. God has this infinite, red carpet: roll it out, he says to another group of angels.’ And de Mello ended by challenging his audience. ‘You think my pictures are silly and childish. I tell you, they are much, more true than the images you may have, especially if you have some picture in the back of your head of a distant and bored and sulky God. Perhaps even after years of theology studies, false pictures of God can still lurk in our imaginations, so that we too become false. We put on prayer masks. We do our religious duty. We try to bargain with this Boss or placate this judge. We have forgotten that the Lord takes delight in people. In more ordinary language, God is thrilled’ to see us. So get yourselves ready patiently. But remember the true God of love to whom you come. Then, some days at least, those ten minutes of yours can flow naturally and easily, and most importantly of all, leave you strengthened for a life of love.
— from Letters on Prayer by Michael Paul Gallagher
Anthony de Mello was an Indian Jesuit who achieved international fame for his writings and spiritual retreats.