Friday, March 12th, 2021
Greetings and Happy Friday! 🌻☀️
— Mark 12:30 —
“You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength.”
Henri Nouwen says, “ To live spiritual life is to live in the presence of God.”
Mr. Nouwen references a book called, “The Practice of the Presence of God,” by Brother Lawrence, a French Carmelite brother who lived in the seventeenth century.(1). I felt a sense of familiarity after reading some of his quotes found here: https://www.goodreads.com/
The words of Brother Lawrence are straightforward, simple and yet filled with profound depth. Love is essential for our spiritual lives, it is central for being within “The Presence of God.” Love means embracing God, opening and emptying our hearts, so that God can fill our hearts. I did some research on my own regarding our verse for today, which says, “You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength,” and I found 11 other verses similar to it, I think that is very relevant to living with “The Presence of God.”
Deuteronomy 6:5, “You must love Yahweh your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength.”
Deuteronomy 10:12, “And now, Israel, what does Yahweh your God ask of you? Only this: to fear Yahweh your God, to follow all his ways, to love him, to serve Yahweh your God with all your heart and all your soul.”
Deuteronomy 11:13, “Depend on it: if you faithfully obey the commandments I enjoin on you today, loving Yahweh your God and serving him with all your heart and all your soul.”
Deuteronomy 13:4, “…you must not listen to that prophet’s words or to that dreamer’s dreams. Yahweh your God is testing you to know if you love Yahweh your God with all your heart and all your soul.”
Deuteronomy 30:6, “Yahweh your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, so that you will love Yahweh your God with all your heart and soul, and so will live.”
Joshua 22:5, “But take great care to practise the commandments and the Law which Moses, servant of Yahweh, has given you: to love Yahweh your God, always to follow his paths, to keep his commandments, to be loyal to him and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.”
1 Samuel 7:3, “Samuel then spoke as follows to the whole House of Israel, ‘If you are returning to Yahweh with all your heart, banish the foreign gods and Astartes which you now have, and set your heart on Yahweh and serve him alone; and he will deliver you from the power of the Philistines.”
Matthew 22:37, “Jesus said to him, ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.”
Mark 12:30, “…and you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and with all your strength.”
Mark 12:33, “To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and strength, and to love your neighbour as yourself, this is far more important than any burnt offering or sacrifice.”
Luke 10:27, “He replied, ‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbour as yourself.”
It is not necessary for being with GOD to be always at church; we may make an oratory of our heart, wherein to retire from time to time, to converse with Him in meekness, humility, and love. Every one is capable of such familiar conversation with GOD, some more, some less: He knows what we can do.
— Brother Lawrence
That all things are possible to him who believes, that they are less difficult to him who hopes, they are more easy to him who loves, and still more easy to him who perseveres in the practice of these three virtues.
— Brother Lawrence
“To live in the presence of God, however, is to live with purity of heart, with simple mindedness, and with total acceptance of his will. That, indeed, demands a CHOICE, a DECISION, and great COURAGE. It is a sign of true holiness.” — Henri J. M. Houwen
Lenten M•I•C•R•O Practice for today:
~ Sustain – Day 21
Write a note of thanks to those who work to keep us healthy (doctors, nurses, etc.). Your words of thanks and appreciation will sustain them through difficult times.
🙏🏻 Prayer 🙏🏻
Dear Lord, you once said,
“The will of the him who sent me
is that I should lose nothing
of all that he has given to me.”
These words are a source of consolation this day.
They show that you are doing all that can be done
to keep me in your love.
They demonstrate that indeed
you entered this world to save me,
to free me from the bonds of evil and sin,
and to lead me to your Father’s house.
They reveal that you are willing
to struggle against the strong powers
which pull me away from you.
Lord, you want to keep me, hold onto me,
fight for me, protect me, help me, support me,
comfort me, and present me to your Father.
It indeed is your divine task not to lose me!
And yet I am free.
I can separate myself from you,
and you will never take this freedom away from me.
Oh, what a wonder of love,
what a mystery of divine grace!
Please, Lord, let me freely choose for your love
so that I will not be lost to you.
~Charlotte, the Seeker of unexpected Comfort, Happiness, Joy and Patience.
Show Me The Way — Henri J.M.Nouwen • 1992 The Crossroad Publishing
(1) Show Me The Way — Henri J.M.Nouwen • 1992 The Crossroad Publishing • Page 76paragraph 1.
(NIV) New International Version Bible/Translation
(NRSVA) New Revised Standard Version Apocrypha
(NJBV) New Jerusalem Bible Version/Translation