faith

Our Own Interpretation

totoro-ca40

My Neighbor Totoro concept art.

“The thinking upon which the second step of humility rests is fascinating. The second step says, “Do not love your own will…” It does not say, Do not have one. On the contrary. We must learn young not to be afraid to think separately from those around us. In fact, our own interpretation of the way our piece of the world goes round is actually our gift to it.”

– Joan Chittister

Advertisements

The Stream Of Life

totoro-ca51

“My Neighbor Totoro” concept art by Hayao Miyazaki.

“I like to define biology as the history of the earth and all its life — past, present, and future. To understand biology is to understand that all life is linked to the earth from which it came; it is to understand that the stream of life, flowing out of the dim past into the uncertain future, is in reality a unified force, though composed of an infinite number and variety of separate lives.”

― Rachel Carson

The Seven Last Words of Christ: Meditations on the Cross

31NvquCkBxL._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

(Full disclosure: The author of this book is my friend.)

Yesterday, while in the middle of reading Jeff Blake’s new book “The Seven Last Words of Christ: Meditations on the Cross,” I had to stop and write to tell him how powerful it is. This short book is HANDS DOWN the best book I’ve read on the message of Jesus. At less than 40 pages the message is distilled to perfection, cutting through any filler or unnecessary repetition while also offering brief personal experiences by Mr. Blake that never take the reader off course.

My belief or faith is far, far away from rock solid. Like reading a passage from Richard Rohr, Henri Nouwen or Thomas Merton the words in these pages feel like an anchor of truth.  How so? While reading I felt the “how it isness” wash over me. I felt carried and at peace.  I also became aware of wanting to flee to distraction in the other direction to avoid letting it all sink in.  Am I the only one who does this? Stoping mid-chapter to write an email is a pretty good indicator I am misdirecting myself. (“Stop reading! Do something else! Tell the world!” You gotta love the ego. No really, you have to or it won’t leave you alone.)

I can’t say enough good things about “The Seven Last Words of Christ: Meditations on the Cross”, by Jeff Blake, so I won’t try. It’s awesome. Pick it up for Lent and read it. Read it more than once. You’ll be very happy you did.

To Know We Matter

ali-inay-2278

“Troubled people are not in search of the information we may be able to give them. They are not in search of scripture verses we can cram down their throats. You know what people are desperate to know when they seek help from another person? We want to know that we matter to God and to the people who are by our side.”

– Jeff Blake, The Seven Last Words of Christ