October 10, 2015

Sundays with Michael Spencer: September 27, 2015

Every time I feel like I have lost my way in the Christian life, I find myself back looking at monasticism, and the lessons I learned in two decades of reading Thomas Merton. I’m not attracted to Catholicism, but I am very much attracted to the tradition of self-conscious, disciplined spiritual formation into a disciple […]

Problems with Teaching about Good Works

I like to use the phrase “good works” to describe Christian living. Doing so reminds me of Ephesians 2:10, a favorite text of mine: “We are his workmanship,” says the apostle, “created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” His workmanship. Created in Christ Jesus. This eliminates any possible understanding […]

Fr. Michel Quoist: “If each note said…”

If each note of music were to say: one note does not make a symphony, there would be no symphony. If each word were to say: one word does not make a book, there would be no book. If each brick were to say: one brick does not make a wall, there would be no […]

Little Brave Unselfish Things

Love has awakened extraordinary energies in him that he himself didn’t think he was capable of. • Michel Quoist Keeping Hope • • • There is one thing people fail to understand who speak disparagingly of “good works” in favor of “faith alone”: any deed done in love cannot, by definition, be done for the […]

Follow Me

I refuse to accept your resignation, says the Lord. • Michel Quoist Keeping Hope • • • This bit of divine response is found near the end of a poem by Fr. Quoist that speaks of how easy it would be to simply give up on being part of God’s mission. However, God loves us […]

Playing the Saint

The most arresting phrase in this quote by Fr. Michel Quoist is: “You play the saint….” When you receive a gift from a friend, you usually open the package immediately, admire your gift, indicate your approval and thank the giver. Your heavenly Father has given you many different gifts, but all too often you do not even dare […]

Daniel Grothe: Bedtime, and the day is beginning

Note from CM: We welcome our friend Daniel Grothe today. His delightful post is a refreshing reminder of God’s fatherly love for us. Daniel blogs at Edging into the Mysteries. • • • Bedtime at our house is something. Often the event that it most closely resembles is the moment a bunch of wild convicts attempt […]

A word from our sponsor, and Michael’s thoughts on “gear”

First today, a word from one of our friends and sponsors, Alan Creech . . . Greetings Internet Monk-ites! It’s been a while since I’ve made an appearance in the actual blog copy of this estimable site. Many thanks to Chaplain Mike for the opportunity to beg for sales. And, from of old, thanks to the […]

Wisdom Week: Life is the Farm

To focus on technique is like cramming your way through school. You sometimes get by, perhaps even get good grades, but if you don’t pay the price day in and day out, you never achieve true mastery of the subjects you study or develop an educated mind. Did you ever consider how ridiculous it would […]

Another Look: Depression and Delight

Note from CM: I’ve been in a funk for several weeks now. Functioning okay, but with little enthusiasm or joy. I needed to read this post I wrote back in 2012. I may need it again tomorrow, and the next day . . . • • • The opposite of depression is delight, being spontaneously […]