Tag Archives: Gods_mercy

His Creation

“The creation is not a study, a roughed-in sketch; it is supremely, meticulously created….Even on the perfectly ordinary and clearly visible level, creation carries on with an intimacy unfathomable and apparently uncalled for.”  Annie Dillard,  Pilgrim at Tinker’s Creek   

I love that phrase, “uncalled for.”  How can we doubt that a loving, purposeful God indeed created us for Himself?
Mt_Emily, La_Grande, Union_County

Anthony_Lake_OR

Healing from the roots up

This Fr Keating statement needs to be read a couple times slowly to truly absorb. Simply put, regardless of our chronological age, emotionally we are still healing, growing up, and learning to see the world as God sees, not as we define it.

“Until basic childhood programs for happiness are repented of, or that is to say changed, we’re engaged, all of us, in an addictive process which will show up if you live long enough in a specific addiction unless you take the spiritual journey to heart and practice to heal that situation. The Gospel is about the healing of our conscious and unconscious wounds.  


It is into this melodrama of everyday life that Jesus has come with the Kingdom, and that’s where it works. That’s where it’s powerful; that’s where it’s found on an everyday basis. Right where you feel it and experience it. And it’s the gift of Jesus. And this is the full meaning of redemption–to heal you from the roots up.

So that instead of self centered motivation and a world in which you see everything from the perspective of the big “I am” of your ego, you see it from the big I AM of God’s selfless-self. That is the true view of reality.” Father Thomas Keating
Cedar waxwings

Joseph Canyon, Rimrock Inn

The mystery of forgiveness

“I believe with all my heart that the mystery of forgiveness is the entire Gospel.  When you ‘get’ forgiveness, you get it.  We use the phrase ‘falling in love.’ I think forgiveness is almost the same thing.  It is a mystery we fall into: the mystery is God.  God forgives all for being imperfect, broken, and poor.  When we know God, we meet  a lover, not a dictator. God is never found to be an abusive father or a tyrannical mother, but always a lover who  is more than we dared hope for.  How different than the ‘account manager’ that most  people seem to worship.”  Fr Richard Rohr

Bird Woman Falls, Glacier National Park

On the way to Sperry Glacier


Some deep thoughts about forgiveness from Father Thomas Keating

“Vulnerability means to be hurt over and over again without seeking to love less, but more. Divine love is sheer vulnerability–sheer openness to giving.  Being vulnerable means loving one another as Christ loved us.  If we did not have to forgive people, we would have no way of manifesting God’s forgiveness toward us.  We pass on the mercy we ourselves have received. The best way to receive divine love is to give it away, and the more we pass it on, the more we increase our capacity to receive.”  Father Thomas Keating

Feather Woman Falls near Sperry Chalet

Hells Canyon and the Seven Devils Mts


Doing love

I decided to continue with more from Henri Nouwen on this simple yet challenging subject.

“Often we speak about love as if it is a feeling.  But if we wait for a feeling of love before loving, we may never learn to love well.  The feeling of love is beautiful and life-giving, but our loving cannot be based in that feeling.  To love is to think, speak, and act according to the spiritual knowledge that we are infinitely loved by God and called to make that love visible in this world.

“Mostly we know what the loving thing to do is.  When we ‘do’ love, even if others are not able to respond with love, we will discover that our feelings catch up with our acts.”  Henri Nouwen
The Cats Back, NE Oregon

The Cats Back, NE Oregon

Between Memory and Hope

Thanksgiving for me always has a certain bitter-sweetness to it.  I am overwhelmingly grateful for the many blessings I have received, but I am also reminded that my “highs,” like my “lows,” are transitory.  As I ponder Christ’s statement that the Kingdom of Heaven is near, I wonder why it still seems far away.  And so I live between memory and hope, grateful for my past, but also looking forward to an eternal life in the future. “Let nothing disturb thee;
Let nothing dismay thee: All thing pass; God never changes
.”  Teresa of Avila

Wallowa Lake

Powder Valley sunrise over the Wallowas


The steadfast love of the Lord

God never stops pursuing us, no matter how perilous our lives, our times may be. He yearns for our response; His faithful presence never ceases.

“You called, shouted, broke through my deafness;

you flared, blazed, banished my deafness;
you lavished your fragrance, I gasped,
  and now I pant for you;
I tasted you, and I hunger and thirst; 
you touched me and I burn for your peace.”
                      St Augustine
Mt Hood

McKenzie Pass

Receiving God’s Love

Last weekend we took care of our friends’ goldendoodle, a cross between a poodle and a golden retriever.  Buddy was an excellent companion, mellow and loving. As we interacted, I was again reminded how much a dog tells us about loving God.  All Buddy really wanted was our love.  He reveled in being petted, positioning himself so as best to receive our touches and attention. He seemed to know that he did not need to do anything to “earn” this love other than just making himself open and aware of us. His purpose was not achieve us, but to receive us.  And so it is with our relationship to God.  How do we position ourselves, purpose ourselves, to receive Him?

“Use the things of the world, but long for things of eternity. You cannot be fully satisfied by material possessions, for you are simply not made to enjoy them.”  Thomas á Kempis
Painted Hills

John Day River

God’s Mercy

“In the world of the Bible, the real explanation for the force shaping the course of things is gathered up in one radiant word: mercy. Creation in its entirety is a work of God’s love and though it is fractured by every sort of strife, it cannot escape the gravity of mercy.  God’s mercy fills the earth (Psalm 35:5). Mercy is the deepest quality of God’s love, the most stunning, unexpected evidence of God’s generosity, the most enduring commitment of God’s sovereignty…. Flexible and strong, mercy is capable of bearing sorrow’s weight and of supporting every honest effort to build new life.”

                                                         John S. Mogabgab
Seven Devils Mts in Idaho, taken near Hat Point, OR

Whale Island, Ohope Beach, North Island, NZ

Forgiveness 2

I am always amazed at how much lighter and freer I feel, spiritually and emotionally, when I first let go of, then actually forgive, those who have hurt me in one way or another. I find there is a real danger when I let the negative energy of “my hurt” take hold of me and control my actions. Henri Nouwen puts it very well in his book, “Bread for the Journey:

“To forgive another person from the heart is an act of liberation….As long as we do not forgive those who have wounded us, we carry them with us, or worse, pull them as a heavy load.  The great temptation is to cling in anger to our enemies and then define ourselves as being offended and wounded by them. Forgiveness, therefore, liberates not only the other but also ourselves. It is the way to the freedom of the children of God.”  

Chimney Lake, Eagle Cap Wilderness

Hells Canyon sunrise