God’s Dream For Us
By chance the Gospel for Friday evening was “I Call You Friends” and our homilist, Thomas, did his best to draw it out and relate it to our Friends of Carmel theme. He told us that the reason for our life is deification. God wants us to be his friends and his equals in a certain sense. Beginning in this life: to enjoy God now. How do we get there? What is it like? Listen in to this short pithy talk that sets the stage for unpacking God’s dream.
At our opening Eucharist Fr. Robert continued to speak of God’s dream, reminding us that in Baptism we are called to a heavenly life, to the risen life, to the fullness of glory. God intends us to see his face and he gives us the means. Through our contemplative life eternity is always breaking into time. Through Eucharist eternity breaks into time.
At our Rule of Life gathering we considered Jesus words the words from John 15.18f. about the world hating you. We asked how the world see us as Christians, and how do we view the world
Today that hatred shows up more as total disinterest, boredom, people are unwilling to admit there even is an inner life that governs our actions. We all can get fooled by falling for this delusion. We can be practical atheists at times.
As contemplatives we recognize that our deepest hunger is for meaning, for God. We know that we are two-dimensional, basically wonderfully human, yet incomplete, and yearning for our divine identity as well.
We remember how to get in touch with that hunger, that place, that sacred space within us that opens onto the divine. We remember that we are made up of body/psyche, soul, and spirit. We know that there is a point within us where it all converges, that sacred place of the heart that connects it all, and as well, is open to transcendence. Where we sense our God’s divine image within us—where we connect with God and with one another on the deepest possible level.
O Living Flame of love
That tenderly wounds my soul
In its deepest centre.
That flame is the Holy Spirit. The wound is that sacred presence.
The act of getting in touch with this wound of love is Contemplation. Contemplation is the intuitive perception of life in its Source.
Contemplation puts us perceptively and lovingly in touch with the innermost reality of everything because it is a simple intuition of the truth.
In our everyday lives we sense God’s purpose in creation when we adopt a stance of stillness. Not stillness as someone who sits under a tree with legs crossed. But rather a stillness that seeks to know the meaning of life not only with the head but with one’s whole being by living in depth and in purity and thus uniting oneself with the very Source of life. Soon we ask: What do you want of me? How can I help build up your kingdom?
But, Contemplation is an acceptance, not a rejection of life. It’s a supreme stillness that is achieved in the open. We suffer and enjoy; we fight and love, win and lose, but in the middle of it all we are still. Still so that we can be more present, more intuitive, tuned-in. We don’t reject the world. We consecrate the world.
Could God’s dream for us involve friendship, asked Gillian. Her talk entitled “The Way of Friendship with Teresa of Avila” gives us great encouragement showing us the kind of earthy friend Teresa was to so many people. She believed that one good means to God was speaking with his friends. At one point she quotes John of the Cross who says, “Where there is no love, put love and you will find love.”
Finally, Sr. Ceil brought us into the time of preparation for Pentecost as she spoke about living in the joy of the Spirit. To mourn for a particular thing or person, to grieve, can be blessed. But if love is making you miserable, perhaps some letting go is called for, or some forgiveness. The Spirit is always new.
Our next gathering is on October 26th which seems like a long time off. Do have a rest this summer and remember to stay in the zone.
With love and blessings,