Monday, June 29, 2009

Nouwen Quote from Yesterday's Sermon

Several people remarked on the quotation I used in yesterday's sermon by Henri Nouwen. It comes from his great book Reaching Out: The Three Movements of the Spiritual Life.

Nouwen describes visiting the University of Notre Dame where he had previously taught and walking with a colleague who had taught there his whole life. The other man remarks as they walked across campus:

"My whole life I have been complaining that my work was constantly interrupted, until I discovered that my interruptions were my work."

I didn't include Nouwen's further reflections on life's interruptions, but here's a taste:

But what if our interruptions are in fact our opportunities, if they are challenges to an inner response by which growth takes place and through which we come to the fullness of being. What if the events of our history are molding us as a sculptor molds his clay, and if it is only in a careful obedience to these molding hands that we can discover our real vocation and become mature people. . . What if our history does not prove to be a blind impersonal sequence of events over which we have no control, but rather reveals to us a guiding hand point to a personal encounter in which all our hopes and aspirations will reach their fulfillment?

Grace and Peace,


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