Oh well, I guess every day is a new day, a new beginning, a new chance to put one foot in front of the other trying to walk that life of faith.
Saturday, August 21, 2010
The Christian life is not an easy path, there are days when I think, gee it would be much easier not to follow Jesus then to follow him!!! I feel like this when I get distracted and become irritable at those around me, get angry, or don't trust God. More often than not I think that I am the center of the universe rather than putting God in my center!
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Lately I have been reading a lot of poetry. Unlike prose and narrative, poetry slows you down, makes you savor and chew on every word. When reading a good page turning thriller or mystery it is easy to read fast skipping over words even, but not with poetry.
I have been reading several volumes of poetry by Mary Oliver. I came across this poem the other day and wanted to share, I hope you like it!
The Vast Ocean Begins Just Outside Our Church: The Eucharist
Something has happened
to the bread
and the wine
They have been blessed.
The body leans forward
to receive the gift
from the priest's hand,
then the chalice.
They are something else now
from what they were
before this began
or on the shore
On the hard days
I ask myself
if I ever will
Also there are times
my body whispers to me
that I have.
Monday, August 16, 2010
A while back I came across this short reflection by the famous pastor, author, and Church leader Reinhold Niebuhr and wanted to pass it along to you. I hope you find some inspiration in it too!
Nothing that is worth doing can be achieved in a lifetime, therefore we must be saved by hope.
Nothing which is true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history, therefore we must be saved by faith.
Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone; therefore we must be saved by love.
Friday, August 13, 2010
Once in a while a very interesting book comes across my desk and I Am Hutterite (Thomas Nelson, 2010) by Mary Ann Kirkby is one of them.
The Hutterites were a small Protestant break off group that appeared in 1528 in Moravia. They took the Book of Acts very seriously and decided to have a common life together and have everything in common; food, fellowship, and income. The Hutterites make the Amish look liberal!
The Hutterites left Europe and many of them found a new life in Western Canada and in the North-Central United States, North and South Dakota, Iowa. Mary-Ann Kirkby's book is part family history and part memoir telling the story of her family through the lens of daily life in a Hutterite commune. Life was very structured with everyone eating and praying together, working on the farm, working the land, mending, sewing, and building. Kirkby recalls that each commune had about 125 people, just enough people to work the land and to feed without being too cumbersome.
The cover of the book says that the book received an award in Canada and Publishers Weekly gave the book a strong endorsement. I found the book intriguing in that Kirkby manages to tell us her own story through the lens of the Hutterite community, but I found her own voice missing. There was no empathy or emotion between me and Mary Ann. Not only was the book a bit cumbersome with the many German words peppered throughout, but the book was written almost objectively, without real feeling. I almost felt like Mary Ann was writing from too far away, that there was very little of "her life" on the page but was telling the story from several generations removed. Maybe this was no fault of her own, but in the end I am glad that I read this book, not only does it fill a gap in modern religious history but Kirkby also included a recipe for a Sugar Pie which I want to try one day, it looks delicious!
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
A while ago I posted a short review of Judith Couchman's book, The Mystery of the Cross published by IVP Press. It is a wonderful read and a great resource for parish Bible study groups and or Christian book clubs.
Below is an interview that I recently had with Judith:
Sunday, August 1, 2010
Just wanted to let you know some fresh reviews in about my book, A 30 Day Retreat, one from the UK and the other from New Zealand, check them out if you have time.
Later this week I'll have some more book reviews and other spiritual reflections, but for now, I'm back on track for blogging!!!!!