Centering Prayer

  • The True Self by M. Basil Pennington
    From An Invitation to Centering Prayer When we were born – of course, most of us don’t remember it for ourselves, though it is all written deep in our memories – we experienced ourselves as little bundles of need.  We needed warmth, we needed stroking, we needed nurture.  All these things were very important to us.  And we yowled to get them. And most of us got them. Our consciousness expanded.  The persons who supplied these needs became very important to us.  There was a deep [...]
Newly added

DISCIPLINE: Costly Grace (Part 1) by Dietrich Bonhoeffer

From The Cost of Discipleship Cheap grace is the deadly enemy of our church.  We are fighting today for costly grace. Cheap grace means grace sold on the market like cheapjacks’ wares.  The sacraments, the forgiveness of sin, and the consolations of religion are thrown away at cut prices.  [...]

The Gentle Art of Blessing

  • How It All Started by Pierre Pradervand
    From The Gentle Art of Blessing Bless them that curse you. (Matthew 5:44) At one point in my career, I was employed in the field of international development, working in the Swiss school system with both students and teachers.  During this time I had to make one of the most difficult decisions in my career: keep my job but accept a situation that violated the most elementary professional ethics, or quit.  (I learned later that the people who [...]

Seeds of Trust

  • God Is Tenderness by Brother Roger of Taizé
    From Seeds of Trust Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul and do not forget all his benefits— who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the Pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good as long as you live so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s. The Lord works vindication and justice for all who are oppressed. He made known his ways to Moses, [...]

The Grace Awakening

  • “No Faces—“Yes” Faces by Charles R. Swindoll
    From: The Grace Awakening Dr. Karl Menninger, in a book entitled, The Vital Balance, at one point discusses the negativistic personality.  That’s the type of person who says, “no,” to just about everything.  Calling these sad folks “troubled patients,” Menninger (no doubt with tongue in cheek) mentions several of the things that characterize their lives.  They have never made an unsound loan, voted for a liberal cause, or sponsored [...]

Eternal Echoes

  • Eternal Echoes, Prologue (Part 2) by John O’Donohue
    From Eternal Echoes Our world is suffused with beauty.  There are landscapes, oceans, paintings, and music whose beauty awakens in our hearts a sense of the eternal.  Yet nowhere do we feel so deeply encountered as we do in the presence of another human being.  There is something in another human presence that is equal to our longing and soul.  The human heart is a theater of longing.  One of our deepest longings is to find love and friendship.  In the Celtic tradition there was the [...]

My writing

  • GOD 101: Forgiveness, Grace, And Mercy
    I have a new little wooden box that is sectioned off.  It allows me to put small bottles in each section. I relate to that box.  My mind likes to put its ideas in little sections, and organize and reorganize the sections to see how things line up. Like a kaleidoscope.  Each piece standing in its own place, but changeable in its relationship to the other pieces. There’s a lot in theology and even in our liturgy that I find sloppy.  Or is done in such a way that causes a person’s [...]

Earth Psalms

  • Faithful To The End by Francine Rivers
    From: Earth Psalms Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others.  Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.  Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.  You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had. (Philippians 2:3-5) Years [...]

Psalms

  • Death In The Psalms (Part 2) by C. S. Lewis
    From Reflections on the Psalms In many passages this is quite clear, even in our translation, to every attentive reader.  The clearest of all is the cry in Psalm 89:46: “O remember how short my time is: why hast thou made all men for nought?”  We all come to nothing in the end.  Therefore “every man living is altogether vanity,” (Psalm 39:6).  Wise and foolish have the same fate, [...]

January 18th

 

 

In wisdom, there is a spirit which is all seeing and which penetrates all spirits. (Wisdom 7:22-23)

 

REFLECTION: Sometimes when we do things that we should not be doing, we pretend that God cannot see us, and he therefore does not know what we are doing.

 

But God knows everything. God even knows our hidden motivations, for the Spirit of God knows us better than we know ourselves.

 

PRAYER: Spirit of Wisdom, reveal that which is hidden, clarify that which is confused.

Epiphany poetry

Charis

  • Jesus Loves Cannibals by Preston Sprinkle
    From: Charis God’s scandalous grace invaded Portage, Wisconsin, with unwelcomed splendor in April 1994.  It sailed past several churches and seminaries and targeted a criminal serving multiple life sentences in the Columbia Correctional Institution.  It’s not uncommon for thieves and murderers in prison to encounter God’s grace, but this day was different.  The villain who attracted God’s love was a man who had killed, had sex with, dismembered, and eaten portions of (in that order) [...]

The Attentive Life

  • Practicing Attentiveness; First Thoughts by Leighton Ford
    From The Attentive Life C. S. Lewis said that when he first woke, thoughts came rushing in like a thousand wild animals all clamoring for attention. I understand that! So I have tried (and am still trying) to let my first thoughts – or at least some of my first thoughts – be toward God.  For example, on awaking I often pray parts of Psalm 25: To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul; in you I trust, O my God. Show me your ways, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for [...]

The Case For Grace

  • The Search For Grace by Lee Strobel
    From: The Case for Grace God waits to be wanted.  Too bad with many of us he waits so long, so very long, in vain. (A. W. Tozer) He was leaning back in his leather recliner in the wood-paneled den, his eyes darting back and forth between the television set and me, as if he didn’t deign to devote his full attention to our confrontation.  In staccato bursts, he would lecture and scold and shout, but his eyes never met mine. It was the evening before my high-school graduation, and my dad had [...]

The Cost of Discipleship

  • The Cost Of Discipleship, Introduction, by Dietrich Bonhoeffer
    From The Cost of Discipleship Revival of church life always brings in its train a richer understanding of the scriptures.  Behind all the slogans and catchwords of ecclesiastical controversy, necessary though they are, there arises a more determined quest for him who is the sole object of it all, for Jesus Christ himself.  What did Jesus mean to say to us?  What is his will for us today?  How can he help us to be good Christians in the modern world?  In the last resort, what we want to [...]

Epiphany prayers

  • Prayer To The Three Kings by Evelyn Waugh
    Like me, you were late in coming. The shepherds were here long before, even the cattle. They had joined the chorus of angels before you were started. For you the primordial discipline of the heavens had to be relaxed and a new defiant light set to blaze amid the disconcerted stars. How laboriously you came, taking sights and calculating, where the shepherds had run barefoot. How odd you looked on [...]

The Voice of Thomas Merton

An Ecology of Silence

 

The new bells sound wonderful from the woods.

 

St. John’s Day – Frater Tarcisius and I walked all the way to Hanekamp’s in the afternoon. Wonderful, quiet little valley! The silent house, the goats in the red sage grass, the dry creek, and Hanekamp’s vineyard. The beautiful silence of the woods on every side! Frater Tarcisius looked about with such reverence that you would have thought he was seeing angels. Later we separated to pray apart in the thinned pine grove on the southeastern hillside. And I could see how simple it is to find God in solitude. There is no one else, nothing else. He is all there is to find there. Everything is in him. And what could be more pleasing to him than that we should leave all things and all company to be with him and think only of him and know him alone, in order to give him our love?

 

To be alone by being part of the universe – fitting in completely to an environment of woods and silence and peace. Everything you do becomes a unity and a prayer. Unity within and without. Unity with all living things – without effort or contention. My silence is part of the whole world’s silence and builds the temple of God without the noise of hammers.

One Of Us

Visions of Hildegard of Bingen

  • First Vision—On The Oright Of Life (2) by Hildegard of Bingen
    From: Hildegard of Bingen’s Book of Divine Works, With Letters and Songs I, the highest and fiery power, have kindled every spark of life, and I emit nothing that is deadly.  I decide on all reality.  With my lofty wings I fly above the globe: With wisdom I have rightly put the universe in order.  I, the fiery life of divine essence, am aflame beyond the beauty of the meadows, I gleam in the [...]

Forgotten God

A Voice For My Soul

Epiphany sermons

  • The Beginning Of Miracles by George MacDonald
    Already Jesus had his disciples, although as yet he had done no mighty works. They followed him for himself and for his mighty words. With his mother they accompanied him to a merry-making at a wedding. With no retiring regard, with no introverted look of self-consciousness or self-withdrawal, but more human than any of the company, he regarded their rejoicings with perfect sympathy, for, [...]