In the spiritual life, the word ‘discipline’ means
‘the effort to create some space in which God can act’.
Discipline means to prevent everything in your life from
being filled up.
Discipline means that somewhere you’re not occupied,
and certainly not preoccupied…
to create that space in which something can happen
that you hadn’t planned or counted on.

Henri Nouwen

(a tucked away cove / Julie Cook / 2017)

This is the path of the mystic,
recognizing that heaven is
‘…a space that Christ made for man in God’

Joseph Ratzinger / Pope Benedict XVI
Excerpt from the book In God’s Hands

17 comments on “space

  1. That’s a lovely quote! “In the spiritual life, the word ‘discipline’ means
    ‘the effort to create some space in which God can act’.” I’m going to have to remember that one.

    This is fabulous too, “to create that space in which something can happen that you hadn’t planned or counted on.” Room for good things, surprises, miracles,the things in life that take our breath away. We actually have to make room for them, prepare to receive them. Myself, I get busy, I’m not paying attention, I focus on the negative, get into crisis mode, and than fail to make room for the miraculous.

  2. says:

    Sad that we have to carve out time for spiritual renewal, but oh so necessary.

  3. Lynda says:

    It’s a matter of priorities and so often we allow the urgent to take away time from the important. Yet we also need to keep in mind that at different times in our lives, we are able to set aside more time to be totally present to our Lord and at other times, it just isn’t as easy. Silent retreats are so very precious and allow us the time just to be present and away from all daily distractions. Karl Rahner, SJ writes: “The devout Christian of the future will either be a “mystic”, one who has experienced “something”, or he will cease to be anything at all.”

    • That is such a profound thought Lynda– jut might need to share that tomorrow 🙂

      • Lynda says:

        I replied to the wrong comment that you made. I should look more carefully and not be in such a hurry – anyway my comment should be here! Mysticism and the Holy Spirit were the themes for my synthesis paper which I’m having bound this afternoon to hand in! What a joy that was to research and write!

      • bound, sealed and delivered—-a true accomplishment—and I can usually follow the threads Lynda as Lord knows I usually stitch mine all over the place 🙂

  4. Tricia says:

    This was a short but very effective post Julie. I’ve been thinking a lot lately on how little time I have anymore to allow my mind to just wander and allow an opening for God to speak to me. This is entirely my fault and am trying to be more disciplined about not reaching for my phone during downtime or jumping to my next task and accepting to just be.

    Your cove scene reminds me so much of a place called Granny Pond nearby where I grew up. The photo brought back I many fond memories of fishing and ice skating there so thank you for that!

    • Thank you Tricia—short and sweet has been the name of the past two days as there was not much I could add to the quotes and the gist of the wise words—
      I am notorious for grabbing the phone, checking on this or that or simply being filled with massive preoccupation—
      learning to be still and simply being in the Presence—which is such a simple notion yet terribly difficult to actually practice.
      So I must heed what I write and share first and foremost.
      The cove is on Lake Wedowee in the middle eastern Alabama—close to the Georgia state line.
      The cove is my favorite place on this massive recreational watershed lake.
      My husband is a fisherman whenever time allows, which is not often, but when we do get to go, he knows I like to head to the little off beaten cove to have lunch.
      It is a spot not many boats visit as it is small and we usually don’t catch much fish in it…but it is just so peaceful.
      Funny how even on a lake visited for recreation, we often seek the secluded and off beaten in order to find solitude.
      God always seems to be drawing me away only to find more of Him….

  5. KD Manes says:

    This post goes perfectly with my devotions this morning: God risked all by creating us in His image and granting us freedom to think for ourselves. My restless mind is often like the waves of the ocean. How I need to make time and space for God’s light to permeate my thinking.

  6. Short and thought-provoking. Have a good weekend missy! 🙂 ❤

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