November 19, 2017

Another Look: Luther on Good Works

Note from CM: I was going to save this post for October, when we will focus almost exclusively on the Reformation, this being its 500th anniversary. But right now, as I posted last week, I am reading Inhabiting the Cruciform God, by Michael J. Gorman, a book that reorients the whole idea of justification around […]

The Path Is Made by Walking

Traveller, your footprints Are the path and nothing more; Traveller, there is no path, The path is made by walking. By walking the path is made And when you look back You’ll see a road Never to be trodden again. • Antonio Machado “We don’t believe something by merely saying we believe it, or even […]

#josiesimpact

One of the common disciplines in Lent is the practice of generosity through giving to others. Patricia and Mark have found a way to do that out of their deep sorrow, and I have been inspired by them. Though their little Josie lived only 18 days, their lives were forever changed by her presence. This […]

Another Look: Luther on Good Works

For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything; the only thing that counts is faith working through love. • Galatians 5:2, NRSV For Christ at the last day will not ask how much you have prayed, fasted, pilgrimaged, done this or that for yourself, but how much good you have done to others, […]

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 […]

Sundays with Michael Spencer: February 1, 2015

Note from CM: 2015 will mark five years since the death of Michael Spencer, the Internet Monk. Today, we continue our “Sundays with Michael” series with an excerpt from post that was originally published in January 2009. • • • Dietrich Bonhoeffer has been an influence on my life since high school. His Letters and Papers from […]