Sunday, March 04, 2007

GOD AND THE CONTEMPLATIVE TRADITION

Read the story of the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:11-32).

Reflection Question: How does this story match your own understanding of what God is like?

8 comments:

Jemila Monroe said...

The story of the prodigal son evokes in me both my best hopes for God and my worst fears that God either "isn't really like that," or that somehow that kind of grace is for other people, but not for me, because I sometimes carry around guilt for the sins other people think I have committed, and since I cannot repent of them, or do not know (in some cases) whether I should or not,) I imagine that God still stands far off with arms crossed, witholding his best blessings, saving them for someone else.

Nancy said...

I think I identify most with the father in the story. In the end, that would be me...just glad to have my wandering child back home and wanting to have a party to celebrate. Funny, because if I take on the role of the prodigal, I do not think I would expect a warm welcome. I'd be afraid to return, even.

As a whole, I suppose the story reminds me of God's grace and joy over the lost children who come home, hat in hand. Having been one of those souls, I'm very grateful to find God's nature is just so merciful and understanding.

Jemila Monroe said...

Beautifully expressed, Nancy. Your words are always so soft and truthful.

Amy said...

I love this story. I've always heard it and understood that it was referring to God, but just recently I'm trying to actually identify with the God described in the story. Basically the process of understanding the story in my heart rather than my head.

Nancy and Jemila, I appreciate each of your perspectives on this story. You've both helped me better understand.

Kate said...

When I think of this story, it reminds me of the times in my youth when my mum and I would fight and I would storm out of the house, slamming the door, yelling at her that I was going to leave forever....and then sitting on the edge of the curb at the end of my street, with no real courage or desire to leave because I knew deep down where it was that I belonged and who loved me.
I sometimes get that way with God - i know it's childish, but sometimes I slam the door, yelling that I'm going to leave and never come back - only to be so grateful when he wraps his arms around me and lets me cry it all out - knowing where I truly belong and who loves me.

Jemila Monroe said...

Kate, I so relate! eemmsmw

Amy said...

Jemila, please tell me the secret to "eemmsmw". I've been thinking about it all weekend! :)

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