Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Words of Wisdom from The Daily Office - Part 7

I have returned to the ongoing discussion thread of the past few weeks. Week 6 of the Daily Office study focuses on helping us to establish a pattern of stopping during our day to remind ourselves of the presence of God in our lives and in the goings on around us. If I had been writing the book, I probably would have put this first … but I think it is very effective coming where it does in the pattern of recovery of spiritual health. Sabbath-taking (talking about brief sabbaths throughout the day as well as taking a Sabbath rest during the week) is a lost art in this day and age. We just don’t know how to do it … and I mean myself when I say “we.”

In New Seeds of Contemplation, Trappist Monk and theologian Thomas Merton wrote:
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.

This is no new idea. Christ in the parable of the sower long ago told us that “the seed is the word of God.” We often think this applies only to the word of the Gospel as formally preached in churches on Sundays. But every expression of the will of God is in some sense a “word” of God and therefore a “seed” of new life. The ever-changing reality in the midst of which we live should awaken us to the possibility of an uninterrupted dialogue with God.

We must learn to realize that the love of God seeks us in every situation, and seeks our good.
As I read that back on July 21, I was blown away by the fact that God seeks me in EVERY situation … even the ones that feel totally devoid of the presence of God. God is not limited by our perception of His presence. He is always there. In the words of Carl Jung: “Bidden or unbidden, God is here.” Another way of saying it might be this: “God is here whether I want Him here or not.” Or maybe this (and I really take comfort in this):

“Even if I forget to invite Him, God comes anyway.”

That’s enough to think about for now. The peace of Christ to you.


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