An Invitation to the Spiritual Life
By Henri J. M. Nouwen
Anaphora of St. Basil, writings of the fathers; Athansios. Ireanaus, Dionysios, Justin Martyr, Theophilus and many others
Opening thoughts and basis for discussion
“You are gods, And all of you are children of the Most High. But you shall die like men, and fall like one of the princes”…using the metaphor of life and death…Theosis becoming once again with God.
Stages of Theosis
Came about or developed by Evagrious of Pontus, Dionysios the Aeropagite, St Maximus the Confessor.
Not a three step process but rather a process of dynamic growth.
How do we work our way towards Theosis?
INNER PEACE and Worrying
The authentic spiritual life finds its basis in the human condition which all people whether they are Christians or not find themselves.
Let us make the human being according to our image and likeness Gen 1:26 And let them rule the fish.
What must we do to achieve inner peace?
The authentic spiritual life finds its basis in the human condition which all people whether they are Christian and not have in common. Spiritual life is a real when it is lived in the midst of pain and joys of the here and now.
Occupation or preoccupation
On top of our everyday lives is all of the bad news in the avalanche of ads-unrelenting insistence that we will miss out on something very important if we do not do something specific they advertise.
How do you feel about your present life?
What do you long for spiritually?
What are your priorities?
Henri reflects that boredom, resentment, and depression are the result of being unfulfilled. What role have these feelings played in your life? Henri describes boredom, resentment and depression, all of which are signs of disconnectedness.
“Jesus responds to this condition of being filled yet unfulfilled…” (p. 37).
Jesus says in Matthew 6:33-34 on page 21 in your bibles..
“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”