Archive for May, 2007

From An Old French Guy …
May 30, 2007

“The great and solid foundation of the spiritual life is to give oneself to God in order to be the subject of His good pleasure … and afterwards to forget oneself so completely that one considers oneself as a thing sold and delivered to the purchaser …

“This foundation being laid, the soul has nothing to do save to pass all her life in rejoicing that God is good, abandoning herself so completely to His good pleasure that she is equally content to do this or that, or the contrary, at the disposal of God, without reflecting on the use which His good pleasure makes of her.

“To abandon oneself! … All that follows this simple acquiescence is the work of God and not of man.”

-Jean-Pierre de Caussade
Eighteenth Century French (ee-gad!) Jesuit

 

 

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Fire …
May 29, 2007

A friend is here from Dwelling Places Children’s Home in Uganda. My husband connected with this place years ago on a trip there … I suppose before it was a “place.” It was just a dream in woman’s heart who wanted to be used by God to make a difference. So we’ve sought to help her do that. Over the years these people have captured and taken a piece of our hearts … which we are happy for them to have.

We asked this gal to explain to a group tonight why she does what she does. Why does she live to give her life away? Listening was extraordinary. To me it felt like looking into a piece of God’s heart. How she started in life pursuing her own dreams, but something caught her heart on fire. The course of her life was altered dramatically when she chose to look at what God put in front of her and allowed God to direct her life. She’s never married, but the burning that is inside of her to live for God, with her heart beating God’s heart, fills her with a life and love that so few ever experience. That life is mixed with pain to be sure … but I can see that it’s fulfillment mixed with painful longing … and fulfillment again. It’s giving everything for the Lord, and finding everything … and realizing you gave nothing! The way she aches inside for the kids God’s put in her life, loves and provides for them, will be known by so few in this world. But the beauty of transformed lives is something no one can measure.

What would happen if we all lived with this level of surrender and passion? I don’t mean selling everything and moving to Africa and caring for orphaned children. But letting God’s desires for our lives, and letting His love for others, burn within us.

I pray that if we ever succeed in building anything, we will build a community full of people who know God, and who live seeking to be God’s hands and feet, living with a fire that comes from allowing His heart to consume us.

Tough Times …
May 24, 2007

Do not rejoice over me, O my enemy. Though I fall, I will rise: though I dwell in darkness, the Lord is a light for me – Micah 7:8

When doubts disturb my troubled breast,
And all is dark as night to me,
Here, as on solid rock, I rest,—
That so it seemeth good to Thee.

– Ray Palmer

When trouble, restless fears, anxious fretfulness, strive to overpower the soul, our safety is in saying, “My God, I believe in Your perfect goodness and wisdom and mercy. What You do, I cannot now understand; but I shall one day see it all plainly. Meanwhile I accept Your will, whatever it may be, unquestioning, without reserve.” There would be no restless disturbance, no sense of utter discomfort and discomposure in our souls, if we were quite free from any—it may be almost unconscious—opposition to God’s will. But we do struggle against it, we do resist; and so long as that resistance endures, we cannot be at peace. Peace, and even joy, are quite compatible with a great deal of pain—even mental pain—but never with a condition of antagonism or resistance. – H. L. Sidney Lear


Let him set his heart firmly upon this resolution: “I must bear it inevitably, and I will, by God’s grace, do it nobly.”
– Jeremy Taylor