Monday, December 10, 2012

Nouwen and Houselander: Recent Reading

Your heart is broken, the heart that did not know hatred, revenge, resentment, jealousy or envy but only love, love so deep and so wide that it embraces your Father in heaven as well as all humanity in time and space. Your broken heart is the source of my salvation, the foundation of my hope, the cause of my love. It is the sacred place where all that was, is and ever shall be is held in unity. There all suffering has been suffered, all anguish lived, all loneliness endured, all abandonment felt and all agony cried out. There, human and divine love have kissed, and there God and all men and women of history are reconciled. All the tears of the human race have been cried there, all pain understood and all despair touched. Together with all people of all times, I look up to you whom they have pierced, and I gradually come to know what it means to be part of your body and your blood, what it means to be human.

Henri J M Nouwen, Heart Speaks to Heart: Three Gospel Meditations on Jesus (Ave Maria Press, 2007), pp 36-7

+ + + + + + + + + + + + + +

The Christ Child in a nation is like the presence of the child in the house: everything centers upon his youth; and he fills everything with his life. If He goes away, the child's values go, too, such as the sense of wonder, mystery, beauty, and adventure: the poetry which, free from materialism, is the most complete realism.

Caryll Houselander, The Reed of God (Sheed and Ward, 1961), pp 103-4