Assisi column and steps  

   The Religion Network publishes every Monday, Wednesday & Friday
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Published 7/2/10
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Henri Nouwen, Joni Eareckson Tada, James Dillet Freeman


Dear Readers,

I chanced upon an remarkable video on television a week or so ago
displaying interaction between an 18-foot manta ray and divers in the
waters off the Hawaiian islands. Mantas are intimidating but harmless,
and they seem to enjoy contact with humans. This one had an ugly mass
of fishing wire wrapped around one of its wings. The divers were poised
in the water holding cutters. Astonishingly, the manta swam to the divers
and slowing down, allowed them to snip away. In the process, the wire
began biting painfully into its flesh, yet the manta circled again and again,
slowing each time so more wire could be removed. The creature's gentle
trust paid off, for eventually it was free -- to swim again and to heal.

We circle back to God each time we pray, and every time we do,
we allow Him to cut away at our entanglements. He is always there,
poised with wire cutters, ready to free us. Although it may
momentarily hurt, it will allow us to heal ultimately.
Circle back again in prayer.

- Lisa

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Woman walking on the beach
Photo by Stephen Bowman            All rights reserved

Those who live prayerfully are constantly ready to receive
the breath of God, and to let their lives be renewed and
expanded. Those who never pray, on the contrary, are like
children with asthma; because they are short of breath, the
whole world shrivels up before them. They creep into a
corner, gasping for air, and are virtually in agony. But
those who pray open themselves to God and can breathe
freely again. They stand upright, stretch out their hands,
and come out of their corner, free to move without fear.

Excerpted from "With Open Hands,"
by Henri Nouwen
Ballentine Books, 1972


You see, God doesn't walk away from His creation.
He doesn't take coffee breaks. He's not off relaxing
somewhere between jobs, sipping on some
refreshments. He's never nonchalant or
aloof about the work of His hands.

Excerpted from "31 Days Toward Intimacy with God,"
by Joni Eareckson Tada
Multnomah Publishers, 2005


The light of God surrounds me;
The love of God enfolds me;
The power of God protects me;
The presence of God watches over me.
Wherever I am, God is.

James Dillet Freeman (1912-2003)
Poet, Minister of the Unity Church
This "Prayer for Protection" (1941) was carried
to the moon on board Apollo 11 by astronaut Buzz Aldrin

The Last Word:

No experience -- no matter how senseless it might
seem -- is wasted. The shaping hurts sometimes,
Father, but by faith I affirm that the end
will be glorious.

Excerpted from "31 Days Toward Intimacy with God,"
by Joni Eareckson Tada
Multnomah Publishers, 2005






























































Random Bonus Quote:

He was an embittered atheist, the sort of atheist who does
not so much disbelieve in God as personally dislike Him.

George Orwell (1903-1950)
British novelist and essayist

(Sorry, but it made me laugh!  - Lisa)


Welcome to
The Religion Network!

I'm Lisa Bowman, editor
of The Religion Network,
a multi-faith Web site.
We offer motivational
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Holy Stretching

Rejoicing the Heart


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