tuesday post in five minutes or less ....

I have been slow on writing lately, so a quick break to jot something down.  Three thoughts on this bright, cool Tuesday afternoon, as has become customary:

1.  I am slowly working through Thomas Merton's Contemplative Prayer.  I cannot help but wonder to some degree if it reflects a tendency to complicate the very simple.  Perhaps my roots still cause me to bristle against too much formality (or form, for that matter) in the realm of prayer.  And it seems that there is some tension between this writing and Merton's personal observations that there is a seeming preference for the deeply personal, non-communal, and non-liturgical.  Or perhaps I have simply read this tension into his writing for my own reasons.

2.  I am mindful that peace comes as direct result of obedience.  Circumstances may change, but that a peace that surpasses all understanding, even in the midst of chaos, can accompany willingness to remain obedient.  I have been thinking a great deal about Mother Theresa's directive to Henri Nouwen, that all of his complicated bedevilments would be resolved if he would only spend an hour a day honoring God, and not intentionally do anything he knew to be wrong.  Simple.  Not easy, even for Nouwen, a "spiritually accomplished" Yale divinity professor.

3.  George Brookhart and I are working together to launch the platform for the "Gratitude Project."  The goal is to develop a forum for the public to post and read stories of gratitude.  I can hardly imagine a more appropriate way to remain mindful of the grace we are shown.

I'll leave you with a powerful reminder from Contemplative Prayer:

"We do not want to be beginners.  But let us be convinced of the fact that we will never be anything else but beginners, all our life!"

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