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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

So Little Time for Prayer

The past two days the reading in the Celtic Daily Prayer have included thoughts on prayer from Horatius Bonar, a 19th century minister of the Church of Scotland.  I found this to be challenging and encouraging to me as I seek to renew my rhythm of prayer in this year.  It both corrects my heart and holds out a promise.  
"Why is there so little concern to get time to pray? Why is there so much speaking, yet so little prayer? Why is there so much running to and fro, yet so little prayer? Why so much bustle and business, yet so little prayer? Why so many meetings with our fellow men, yet so few meetings with God? Why so little being alone, so little thirsting of the soul for the calm, sweet hours of unbroken solitude, when God and His child hold fellowship together as if they could never part? It is the lack of these solitary hours that not only injures our own growth in grace, but makes us such unprofitable members of the church of Christ, and that renders our lives useless. In order to grow in grace, we must be much alone with God. It is not in society, even Christian society that the soul grows most rapidly and vigorously. In one single quiet hour of prayer it will often make more progress than in whole days of company with others. It is in the 'desert' that the dew falls freshest and the air is purest. So with the soul. It is when none but God is near; when His presence alone, like the desert air in which there is mingled no noxious breath of man, surrounds and pervades the soul; it is then that the eye gets the clearest, simplest view of eternal certainties; it is then that the soul gathers in wondrous refreshment and power and energy."  Quoted from "Ministerial Confessions"

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Quotes along the Way

"There is more hunger for love and appreciation in this world than for bread."- Mother Teresa

"Surely next to its love for the chief of sinners the most touching thing about the religion of Christ is its amazing trust in the least of saints." Henry Drummond, City without a Church

There is a great difference between successfulness and fruitfulness. Success comes from strength, control, and respectability. A successful person has the energy to create something, to keep control over its development, and to make it available in large quantities. Success brings many rewards and often fame. Fruits, however, come from weakness and vulnerability. And fruits are unique. A child is the fruit conceived in vulnerability, community is the fruit born through shared brokenness, and intimacy is the fruit that grows through touching one another’s wounds. Let’s remind one another that what brings us true joy is not successfulness but fruitfulness. -Henri Nouwen Bread for the Journey

"Remember there's no such thing as a small act of kindness. Every act creates a ripple with no logical end."  - Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert