Sunday, March 13, 2011

Sunday Thought from Henri Nouwen

Yesterday's Henri Nouwen reading in my Lenten devotional discipline struck me:

"To live a spiritual life does not mean that we must leave our families, give up our jobs, or change our ways of working; it does not mean that we have to withdraw from social or political activities or lose interest in literature and art; it does not require severe forms of asceticism or long hours of prayer. . . . the spiritual life can be lived in as many ways as there are people" (originally from Making All Things New, reprinted in Show Me the Way, pages 20-21, emphasis mine).

Why does this passage interest me so much? I've spent much of my life thinking of a spiritual life in terms of right or wrong: do this, don't do this, this is the right way, all other ways are wrong. What a wonderful counterpoint to my severe view: just as there are a multitude of humans, there are a multitude of ways to live a spiritual life.

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