Archive for the ‘Life’ Category

Living in the Present, Without Fear

Thursday, December 29th, 2016

Fear can only be experienced by living in the future. Trying to live in the future now, which is impossible, only creates strain and fear. Even if we move only five minutes ahead in a difficult situation, we create a lot of fear for ourselves. By living in the future rather than the present, we can only expect our future to be like the past, because the past is all we have to give our future. However, if we fully live in the present moment, we give this to our future, and fear disappears. When living fully in this moment, no matter how difficult it looks, we are not concerned about our future; therefore there can be no fear.

— Chuck Spezzano, If It Hurts, It Isn’t Love, p. 213

Learning Takes Time.

Friday, November 4th, 2016

“Sometimes we get too angry with ourselves thinking that we ought to be perfect from the word go. But this being on earth is a time for us to learn to be good, to learn to be more loving, to learn to be more compassionate. And you learn, not theoretically.” The Archbishop was pointing his index fingers at his head. “You learn when something happens that tests you.” And then he was pretending to be speaking as God might. “‘Hello, you said you wanted to be more compassionate.’ ‘Hello, you wanted to be a little more laid-back.'”

— Archbishop Desmond Tutu, quoted by Douglas Abrams in The Book of Joy, p. 91-92

Life Wins.

Sunday, October 30th, 2016

We have staked it all on this — that life wins. Oh, dear friends — life wins.

Life wins. Sometimes now, especially if we will pray. But life wins fully, and very soon.

Just as we must fix our eyes on Jesus when we pray, we must also fix our hearts on this one undeniable truth: life will win. When you know that unending joy is about to be yours, you live with such an unshakable confidence it will almost be a swagger. You can pray boldly, without fear, knowing that, “If this doesn’t work now, it will work totally and completely very soon.” We can have that kingdom attitude of Daniel’s friends, who said, “God is able to deliver, and he will deliver. But if not . . .” we will not lose heart. Period.

— John Eldredge, Moving Mountains, p. 228-229

Love Is an Inside Job.

Monday, October 10th, 2016

Through her own challenging experiences of both love and solitude, she had come to know that love is first and foremost an inside job — not in the sense of trying to love herself with positive affirmations but rather in becoming intimate with her own experience, with allowing herself to be transparent to herself and others rather than protecting her heart for fear of being known too well and then rejected.

She was also engaged in a creative and fulfilling life that she loved. As an individual ripens, becomes something in herself, as Rilke puts it, there is less need to find someone else to fill the missing gap. Athena wasn’t averse to an intimate relationship; on the contrary, she knew that she wanted one, but she didn’t need it.

— Roger Housden, Dropping the Struggle: Seven Ways to Love the Life You Have, p. 74-75

A Hero’s Journey

Sunday, August 28th, 2016

You may not have signed up for a hero’s journey, but the second you fell down, got your butt kicked, suffered a disappointment, screwed up, or felt your heart break, it started. It doesn’t matter whether we are ready for an emotional adventure — hurt happens. And it happens to every single one of us. Without exception. The only decision we get to make is what role we’ll play in our own lives: Do we want to write the story or do we want to hand that power over to someone else? Choosing to write our own story means getting uncomfortable; it’s choosing courage over comfort.

— BrenĂ© Brown, Rising Strong, p. 45

Vocation

Sunday, August 14th, 2016

God calls each of us to different vocations. Or, rather, God plants within us these vocations, which are revealed in our desires and longings. In this way God’s desires for the world are fulfilled, as we live out our own deepest desires. Vocation is less about finding one and more about having it revealed to you, as you pray to understand “what I want and desire.”

— James Martin, S.J., The Jesuit Guide to (Amost) Everything, P. 343.

What We Need Is More Life

Thursday, July 21st, 2016

Let us in all the troubles of life remember that our one lack is life — and what we need is more life — more of the life-making presence in us making us more, and more largely alive. When most oppressed, when most weary of “life,” as our unbelief would phrase it, let us remember that it is, in truth, the inroad and presence of death we are weary of. When most inclined to sleep, let us rouse ourselves to live.

— George MacDonald, Unspoken Sermons, Second Series, quoted in Knowing the Heart of God, edited by Michael Phillips, p. 21

Moving in the Direction of Love

Friday, July 15th, 2016

The purpose of your life is not to carry a grievance. With forgiveness, you can grieve and then ask love to help you use the past to create a future that moves in the direction of love.

— Robert Holden, Loveability, p. 182

God Meets You Where You Are

Monday, July 4th, 2016

Even though God is always calling us to constant conversion and growth, and even though we are imperfect and sometimes sinful people, God loves us as we are now. As the Indian Jesuit Anthony de Mello said, “You don’t have to change for God to love you.” This is one of the main insights of the First Week of the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius: you are loved even in your imperfections. God already loves you.

The Christian can see this clearly in the New Testament. Jesus often calls people to conversion, to cease sinning, to change their lives, but he doesn’t wait until they have done so before meeting them. He enters in relationship with them as he finds them. He meets them where they are and as they are.

— James Martin, S.J., The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything, p. 81-82.

Alive Indeed

Saturday, July 2nd, 2016

The soul in harmony with his Maker has more life, a larger being, than the soul consumed with cares. The sage has a larger life than the clown. The poet is more alive than the man whose life flows out that money may come in. The man who loves his fellow is infinitely more alive than he whose endeavor is to exalt himself above his neighbor. The man who strives to be better in his being is more alive than he who longs for the praise of many.

But the man to whom God is all in all, who feels his life roots hid with Christ in God, who knows himself the inheritor of all wealth and worlds and ages, yes, of power essential and in itself, that man has begun to be alive indeed.

— George MacDonald, Unspoken Sermons, Series Two, “Life,” quoted in Discovering the Character of God, p. 21