is a fullness
that comes
from right relation
with people
and God
is choosing
to practice
of spirit
Anchoring your soul
in the person of God
is the way
to weather life's storms
The true beauty
of Christianity
is people
by love
Introspection can become the enemy of Christ likeness. Our constant navel gazing creates only self focus even when that introspection is clothed in a 'spiritual' garment.

Those that are becoming truly Chris like have forgotten themselves. They have lost their self focus as they gaze upon on Christ. Only those that gaze completely on Christ forget themselves and become like him.

Joy Moments

There are these brief moments of joy
that happen
every day
and I want to remember them
before I rush on

So I'm starting a list
on a white card
in my pocket
where I write down the moments
before I forget

Then in the evening
when darkness comes
I take out my card
and lift it up
into the light

Cease Your Striving

I am coming to the conclusion that there is a certain psychological wear and tear which happens to every person as we pursue our dreams, plans and passions.

We are constantly pursuing things.
Or people.
Or accomplishments.
Or recognition.

Most of us have the eyes of our hearts fixed on some object that we are pursuing.

The Bible calls this 'striving' and it means running after things. Even good things. We are striving when we are running after whatever it is we are currently running after.

The purpose of Sabbath is to rest. To cease striving and let God care for you. It is a chance to rest from the constant pull of our passions, from the constant effort of our hearts to reach our desired goal and to receive care. This not only recharges our hearts but it also helps bring the objects of our desires into proper view again. By setting these goals aside for a time we remember that those goals exist inside of the larger context of God's love. They are passing passions that will someday be engulfed by the magnificence of God.
The beauty of God
will only unfold
from the heart
that is broken
and empty
like Jesus
Jesus life
is a daily
and a daily
like Winter
into Spring
I believe in a Jesus who was broken for me.

Am I being broken for others?
Christ like
through me
To pray
is to dream
out loud
with God.

Hope is a great thing, maybe the best thing.

- John Cristy

The True Definition of Peace

The true definition of peace
is right relation
with God
and with people.

Why did it take me so long to figure that out?

Bono' s Journey

from YouTube at the national Prayer Breakfast

A Question for 2008

"How can I grow deeper in love with God this year?"

Jesus' command to love God first among all other things in this world is a compelling call to create our lives with Him at the center. This is an active decision of the will to reach for God first in every situation and to value Him above all the other beauties that call out to our hearts. This first effort, reaching for God in every situation, may seem simple enough. But the second effort, valuing Him above all else, is much harder. Many things, people and ideas compete for our attentions and affections. Many treasures sparkle and shine, calling us to value them and adore their beauty. But only one treasure, God Himself, is most brilliant. So how do you live this out? How do we cherish Him daily, returning God moment by moment to the rightful place in our hearts as most beautiful and lovely?

That's the big question.

Letting go of yourself is the path to letting God in.

Fr. Thomas Keating and Centering Prayer

Fr. Thomas Keating's long life of dedication to contemplative prayer has given us the Contemplative Outreach ministry among its many fruits. This site is an excellent guide to contemplative prayer and connecting with groups, retreats, books and other resources for the contemplative life. Keating invites us to join with these people who are seeking to join with God.

For an armchair introduction to Centering Prayer I recommend Keating's book Open Mind, Open Heart: The Contemplative Dimension of the Gospel. This slim book provides a thorough introduction that can get you started on centering prayer right away. And starting is probably the most important thing you can do. Keating is more about 'embodied' theology than abstract analysis. You learn centering prayer by doing centering prayer and we grow in prayer by praying day in and day for a lifetime.

A Communion Throught

Our modern, materialist view of life has taken much of the sacred out of our view of the physical world. For example, desanctification of the material world has resulted in us seeing the Communion bread as 'only bread' and the Communion wine as 'just some juice'. These traditional elements cease to be the miraculous evidences of God's healing work and have become instead merely a dry crust and a token drink. But if God does indeed invest every molecule of this world with vibrant, powerful presence then why could a piece of bread not become the body of God? And what prevents a glass of wine from transforming into the living blood of Jesus?

If God can transform us by His presence, He can tranform the world too.
Christ is the sweetness of every moment. The trick is to enjoy him!

How People Grow : Henry Cloud and John Townsend

How People Grow is a book that came and went on the Christian bookshelf with little notice by most readers. Cloud and Townsend's other more popular titles seem to have eclipsed this seemingly mundane work in the public eye. And yet this substantive book provides us with the deeper foundations for their forays into Christian psychology and the unique ways that God calls us to grow spiritually. This is the deep work of God below the surface of the soul that brings forth fresh, new transformation of the spirit. This book also skillfully weaves the worlds of modern psychology together with the richer, deeper work of Christ-language to explain the process of soul transformation in ways that modern, psychologically minded readers can understand. We live in a psycho-therapeutic age where everyone has a therapist. Cloud and Townsend want you to know that Christ is the best therapist we have and he works in unique ways on our souls.

Seperation from God

The biggest thing that seperates us from God is the worry that we are seperated from God.

- Thomas Keating