Friday, January 30

Jesus of Nazareth on THE KINGDOM OF GOD

This is how it is with the Kingdom of God;
it is as if a man were to scatter seed on the land
and would sleep and rise night and day
and the seed would sprout and grow,
he knows not how.
Of its own accord the land yields fruit,
first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear.
And when the grain is ripe, he wields the sickle at once,
for the harvest has come.
(Mk 4:26-34 NAB)

Monday, July 7


The body is the symbol, not of individuality, but of solidarity. It is that which binds, in each individual, divinely unique as he is, an inescapable relatedness to the whole of nature and history and the cosmic order. It is the bond of continuity and unity between man and his environment, between individual and community, between generation and generation. The doctrine of the resurrection of the body is the doctrine of the redemption and replacement of one solidarity by another, by the body of the old mortality by the Body of Christ. It is an assertion that no individual can be saved apart from the whole. Through His body He is organically linked with all other life and all other matter in the universe. There is no redemption for the individual out of this math, but only in it and with it. The Christian Gospel is not of the rescuing of individuals out of nature and history, but the redeeming of all the myriad relationships of creation into a new Heaven and a new Earth - the City of God, the Body of Christ.
(In The End God)

Saturday, January 4


You must picture me alone in that room in Magdalen, night after night, feeling, whenever my mind lifted even for a second from my work, the steady, unrelenting approach of Him whom I so earnestly desired not to meet. That which I greatly feared had at last come upon me. In the Trinity Term of 1929 I gave in and admitted that God was God, and knelt and prayed: perhaps, that night, the most dejected and reluctant convert in all England. I did not then see what is now the most shining and obvious thing: the Divine humility which will accept a convert even on such terms. The Prodigal Son at least walked home on his own feet. But who can duly adore that Love which will open the high gates to a prodigal who is brought in kicking, struggling, resentful, and darting his eyes in every direction for a chance of escape? The words compelle intrare, compel them to come in, have been so abused by wicked men that we shudder at them; but, properly understood, they plumb the depth of the Divine mercy. The hardness of God is kinder than the softness of men, and His compulsion is our liberation.
(Surprised by Joy)

Saturday, December 7


        With this ambiguous earth
        His dealings have been told us. These abide:
        The signal to a maid, the human birth,
        The lesson, and the young Man crucified.
        But not a star of all
        The innumerable host of stars has heard
        How He administered this terrestrial ball.
        Our race have kept their Lord’s entrusted Word.
        Of His earth-visiting feet
        None knows the secret, cherished, perilous,
        The terrible, shamefast, frightened, whispered, sweet,
        Heart-shattering secret of His way with us.
        No planet knows that this
        Our wayside planet, carrying land and wave,
        Love and life multiplied, and pain and bliss,
        Bears, as chief treasure, one forsaken grave.
        Nor, in our little day,
        May His devices with the heavens be guessed,
        His pilgrimage to thread the Milky Way
        Or His bestowals there be manifest.
        But in the eternities,
        Doubtless we shall compare together, hear
        A million alien Gospels, in what guise
        He trod the Pleiades, the Lyre, the Bear.
        O, be prepared, my soul!
        To read the inconceivable, to scan
        The myriad forms of God those stars unroll
        When, in our turn, we show to them a Man.

Wednesday, April 10

George William Russell on THE STARS

Even as a bird sprays many-coloured fires, 
The plumes of paradise, the dying light 
Rays through the fevered air in misty spires 
That vanish in the heights. 

These myriad eyes that look on me are mine; 
Wandering beneath them I have found again 
The ancient ample moment, the divine, 
The God-root within men. 

For this, for this the lights innumerable 
As symbols shine that we the true light win: 
For every star and every deep they fill 
Are stars and deeps within.

Thursday, January 17

King David on ALL MY DELIGHT

Thou art my God, my goods are nothing unto thee. All my delight is upon the saints, that are in the earth: and upon such as excel in virtue. But they that run after another god: shall have great trouble. Their drink-offerings of blood will I not offer: neither make mention of their names within my lips. The Lord himself is the portion of mine inheritance, and of my cup: thou shalt maintain my lot. The lot is fallen unto me in a fair ground: yea, I have a goodly heritage. I will thank the Lord for giving me warning: my reins also chasten me in the night-season. I have set God always before me: for he is on my right hand, therefore I shall not fall. Wherefore my heart was glad, and my glory rejoiced: my flesh also shall rest in hope. For why? thou shalt not leave my soul in hell: neither shalt thou suffer thy Holy One to see corruption. Thou shalt shew me the path of life; in thy presence is the fulness of joy: and at thy right hand there is pleasure for evermore.
(BCP Psalter)

Wednesday, January 16

Amy Carmichael on FADING HOPES

The thoughts of the son ran thus: ‘My hopes painted beautiful pictures, but they are fading one by one.’ His Father said: ‘Destroy all those pictures. To watch them slowly fading is weakening to the soul. Dare then to destroy them. You can if you will. I will give you other pictures instead of those your hopes painted.