Human beings only create by drawing on their poverty. I am well placed to assert that today: it is exactly thirty years ago that I discovered Taize.
In the Gospel, to be oneself means searching deeply until the irreplaceable gift given to each one of us is revealed. Through that special gift, unlike anyone else’s, each person is brought to fulfillment in God.
In all things peace of heart, joy, simplicity, and mercy.
Love, and say it by your life.
Original sin is our sharing int he common pain of being human. It does not need hatred. It needs healing. It does not deserve punishment. It deserves tears. It is not worked through so much as washed away by situating one’s life in a much bigger picture.
In each person there is a portion of solitude which no human intimacy can ever fill.
More often than ever before young people ask me, “What is the most beautiful thing in your life?” Without hesitating I reply:
- first of all the common prayer, and in it, the long periods of silence.
Then, immediately after that, the most beautiful thing in my life is this:
- when I am talking with someone alone, to perceive the whole human being, marked by a tragedy or by being torn apart within, and at the same time by the irreplaceable gifts through which the life of God in that person is able to bring everything to fulfillment.
It is essential to try to comprehend the whole person… It is not enough simply to share what assaults a person within. It is even more vital to search for that special gift of God, the pivot of their whole existence. Once this gift (or gifts) has been brought to light, roads forward lie open.
“[The heart is] the place where intellect and emotion and spirit will converge in the human self.”
- Parker Palmer
“The ultimate measure of a person is not where they stand in moments of comfort and convenience, but where they stand at times of challenge and controversy.”
Martin Luther King, Jr.
You and I are incomplete. I’m unfinished. I’m unfixed. And the reality is that’s where God meets me is in the mess of my life, in the unfixedness, in the brokenness. I thought he did the opposite, he got rid of all that stuff. But if you read the Bible, if you look at it at all, constantly he was showing up in people’s lives at the worst possible time of their life.
– Mike Yaconelli