Humility, Obedience, Patience: December 2005 Archives

How Do We Train Desire?

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Following on the posts below, one can be led to ask the question--how then does one order disordered desires? How can one fix the compass that points home?

Well, simply, one cannot. Grace does it. But to dispose ourselves to grace--there are any number of ways. The boil down to two words, which themselves are a gift of grace--gratitude and humility.

Until I come to realize that I have nothing of myself--that every gift is a gift from above--every breath is a gift, and riches I have are granted by a gracious Lord, any grace, facility, ability, talent, or gift are His first and given without any merit on my part. Nothing I call "mine" is "mine" by right except my sin. All is gift.

If this is true--if the food I eat, the air I breathe, the gifts I exercise in earning my money, the house I live in, the wife and children I have, everything, everything down to and including this wretched body, everything is a gift unasked for. Some turn this to a bitter turn, but properly seen, these gifts are beyond measure gracious. The only attitude is ecstatic gratitude. Yes, even in the worst times, gratitude is the key to opening the door of riches and grace. I cannot begin to be transformed until I leave off self and self-aggrandizement and turn to Him who is the source of all.

Thus humility and gratitude walk hand-in-hand. When I know am I nothing and nothing I have comes to me through my own efforts, but rather through grace, what can I do but be grateful for everything. And in this gratitude is the beginning of the deepest love. True, human gratitude can sour and become a burden; however, God does not Lord it over us. He does not constantly remind me of how great He is and how small I am. He doesn't constantly crow about how wonderful He is and how small I am. Indeed, He calls me time and again one of His own. I am His dearly beloved child. I am the weaned child, rocked on the breast of the Father (psalm 131). I am loved as if I were His only child. Indeed, each of us is loved with the same prodigality.

When I consider how You say that Your delights are with the children of teh earth, my soul rejoices greatly. O Lord of heaven and erth, what words athese are that no sinner might be wanting in trust! St. Teresa of Avila

His delights are with us! There is no comment, no explanation, no set of words that pierces to the heart of delight centered in those words. You may look each morning in the mirror and say, "You are well and truly the beloved of God--at once one of many and the sole point of all his attention."

God delights in us.
Delights in us--rejoices in us.
As I delight in all the antics of my young son,
so God delights in us--
He is swift to forgive and rich in lovingkindness--
deserving or not, each person is loved as the only person,
each child is loved as an only child.

God's delight is with His people,
to be among them, to be loved by them,
to be present.

God's love knows no bounds
His embrace is limitless
overcoming even our own self-doubt
and our worthlessness.

What have I done to have such a Father?
Nothing--He made me and I am His.\
And He whispers to me:

Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm:
for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave:
the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame.

Song of Songs 8:6

Thank you, Lord. Thank you. I wait for you now--hasten and do not tarry. Come Lord Jesus!

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Humility, Obedience, Patience category from December 2005.

Humility, Obedience, Patience: November 2003 is the previous archive.

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