Pastor Pete Scazzero suggests thirteen indicators of being out of loving union with God:
- I feel anxiety in the tenseness and tightness in my body.
- I am not present or listening intently.
- I feel pressure, with too much to do in too little time.
- I am rushing.
- I give quick opinions and judgments.
- I am fearful about the future.
- I am overly concerned with what others think.
- I am defensive and easily offended.
- I am preoccupied and distracted.
- I am resentful of interruptions and abrupt.
- I am manipulative, not patient.
- I am unenthusiastic or threatened by the success of others.
- I talk more than I listen.
“Abide in Me, and I in you.
As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself
unless it abides in the vine,
so neither can you unless you abide in Me.”
Jesus in John 15:4
Moving From the Head to the Heart
- This list is a profound body-focused diagnostic tool. What is your body telling you about your present experience of loving union with God?
- The desert fathers talked about the life of faith this way: “I fall down; I rise up. I fall down; I rise up.” The point of the list is that your body will tell you when you have “fallen down.” When you do, can you be gracious with yourself (instead of heaping self-recrimination, wallowing in guilt and shame, or making excuses), and simply act to reestablish union?
- It’s hard to live in loving union with God and others. Will you accept God’s guidance to you, to help you do better, as he speaks to you through your body? Has God been speaking to you lately in this manner? Have you been listening?
Abba, anxiety, defensiveness, talking too much, hurrying, criticizing others – these are the “trouble lights” in my O.S. I’d rather not notice them, but if you’re going to talk to me this way, I want to listen. Please help me pay attention to the indicators and steer myself quickly back on course.
For More: “Your Body is a Major, Not Minor Prophet” by Peter Scazzero
Thomas Merton’s goal is his writing is the same as mine in this blog: “The purpose of a book of meditations is to teach you how to think and not to do your thinking for you. Consequently if you pick up such a book and simply read it through, you are wasting your time. As soon as any thought stimulates your mind or your heart you can put the book down because your meditation has begun.” I’m not Thomas Merton (!), yet I hope these Daily Riches will lead you into much life-enriching meditation. – Bill (Psalm 90:14)