Tuesday, September 20, 2011

"Most people are like a shaving of wood which is curled round its central emptiness." -Saint Theophan the Recluse

Father brought this concept up last Sunday. It was expository for me in more than one way, although I don't claim to understand the Gospel that Father was talking about. I think the reading was from Mark chapter 8,

†“Whoever desires to come after Melet him deny himselfand take up his crossand follow Me35For whoever desires to save his life will lose itbut whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it36 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole worldand loses his own soul37Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul38 For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generationof him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”†

Being self absorbed is not necessarily thinking you're the best, or building yourself up. It is also thinking you're a failure, and obsessing over your own shortcomings. It is everything which is not extending your heart in love which reaches every direction. Denying your own will, and instead becoming busy with the work of love, as Father put it.

Openness to love, and to life. Right now we are in a waiting place. We can't move forward with our plan for this life until we deal with the mess we are in. As upsetting as this feels, it really should not concern us much. The real work of living, what we are really about, has nothing to do with our circumstances. And I know that I am like the shaving of wood, wrapped around my own empty ideas of what life is, who I should be, and my broken concept of love.


  1. I just wanted to let you know that this post was a much-needed reminder and a blessing to me. Please read this particular post (http://eclecticismjncl.blogspot.com/2011/09/welcome-to-red-sea-place.html) on my blog to better understand why.
    In Christ,

  2. Very powerful point about self absortion. I know I do need many times get out of my own self doubting state and think of the true meaning of life and how we are just a piece of a much bigger equation on the hand of G*d.

    I love reading abut your journey in conversion.
    I'm doing it too but as a Jew. I find Torah fascinating.


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