“Lord, now let your servant depart in peace, according to your word; for mine eyes have seen your salvation… LUKE 2:28-30 Christians say with Simeon: “Our eyes have seen His salvation.” The Jews reply: “We have not seen His salvation, we are waiting for it.” The presence of the Messiah is a mystery; it cannot be said to everybody, and it cannot be seen by everybody, but only by those like Simeon who are driven by the Spirit….The mystery of salvation is the mystery of a child. Its nature is visible and invisible, it is here and not yet here…Salvation has the nature of a child….He who wants a salvation which is only visible cannot see the divine child in the Manger as he cannot see the divinity of the Man on the Cross and the paradoxcal way of all divine acting. Salvation is a child and when it grows up it is crucified.. Read more.
As goes the sexual embrace of a husband and wife, so goes the marriage. (As goes the sexuality of a single person, so goes their close relationships). As goes the marriage, so goes the family. As goes the family, so goes the church. As goes the church, so goes the community. As goes the community, so goes the city. As goes the city, so goes the world.
Augustine once said that God is always trying to give good things to us but our hands are too full to receive them. Roslyn H. Wright, a Director of Field Education at Whitley College in Australia, visited me in NYC recently. The following are reflections out of her work with seminary students around “Incarnational goal setting”: 1. God’s calls us to courageously lead out of our ‘true self.’ “The problem of sanctity and salvation is in fact the problem of finding out who I am and of discovering my true self” (Thomas Merton). God gives to each of us a “manifestation of the Spirit for the common good” with a unique working out of that gift in the Body and the world. The forces, internal and external, that move us away from that place of leading from within are enormous. 2. Prayer, particularly the Examen, along with a trusted community, is the foundation for. Read more.
Joseph Pieper (1904-1997), German philosopher and theologian, wrote Happiness and Contemplation in 1958. In this short work, he summarizes much of the theology of Thomas Aquinas. If you are willing to read slowly and thoughtfully, you will encounter rich, life-transforming spiritual food on these pages. The following are a few of the quotes I noted in my journal: Every human being, without exception, is called to eternal contemplative happiness with God. The human craving for happiness may be distracted by a 1000 small gratifications but “one sweet fruit is sought” (Dante). The ultimate satiation of man’s deepest thirst takes place in contemplation. Many joys in the course of everyday life come to us. They are a foretaste and beginning of perfect joy. The whole good cannot be quenched by anything less than God! It cannot be found in realm of created things. What then is the drink known as happiness that can ultimately suffice. Read more.
A number of people have asked me about where God is amidst the devastation of the recent earthquake in Haiti. What do we tell our children, our young people, our church, and seekers? Last Sunday I preached a summary of the Book of Isaiah to our church as we concluded a recent teaching series. We distributed two weeks of a Daily Office based on Isaiah that you are welcome to download. It can be found at: http://newlifefellowship.org/resources/sermons Why does God allow evil like the earthquake in Haiti? The answer is: “I don’t know.” Nobody does. The Jews went through repeated tumultuous, confusing, often disastrous, events during the time of Isaiah. The country was shaken to the core after King Uzziah died. He had provided 52 years of stability and relatively good leadership. They were invaded by the Assyrians and later conquered by the Babylonians. They lost everything and were carried into exile 500-700. Read more.