Thursday, April 12, 2012

Recommended Reading

I'm always reading and most of what I read is religious/spiritual/theological in subject. And of that reading, every now and then I come across books that I just have to recommend. Over the past two weeks I read two books, both of which touched me in a deep place and spoke volumes into my heart.

The first of which is called We have Found Mercy: The Mystery of God's Merciful Love, by Cardinal Christoph Schonborn. (Click the title for a link to amazon.)
-Cardinal Schonborn is one of my favorite writers. He has an easy and accessible way of writing about the Faith and about our call to Discipleship. This particular book discusses the depth of God's mercy as exercised through His mission of mercy to us and for us through His Son, Jesus. He starts in Scripture (Old Testament: a great explanation about why God is so violent in the O.T.), picks up a brief history of St. Faustina Kowalska, and ends with a beautiful explanation about how we can receive God's mercy and also give to others, share it with others. There are also great chapters on Blessed John Paul II, St. Paul and the spiritual and corporal works of mercy. 

This book will no doubt change the way I receive God's mercy as I continue my journey of deepening Discipleship and growing holiness. But it will also change the way that I approach the ministry of mercy I share with Jesus as a priest.  It has given new meaning to the Beatitude, "Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy."

Secondly, there is Deep Conversion/Deep Prayer, by Father Thomas Dubay, S.M.  I'm gonna level with you, I got done reading this book and I felt like I had been put through the wringer. Holy Cow! This priest knows how to challenge and support and encourage and teach!  So, here's the thing: Dubay discusses the challenges that occur when we're ready to deepen our relationship with the Lord. He says that once we've conquered the mortal sins in our life, we have to take dead aim at the venial ones: the little sins that keep us from a deep, deep relationship with the Lord, 'in the Spirit'. He then talks about how this has to occur through 'deep conversion and deep prayer.'  I got done reading this book and I was, and still am, somewhat speechless.  However, the invitation is clear!

This is one of those books that, if I won the Mega Millions Lottery, I would use the money to buy a boatload of copies and give them away.  This book was amazing and I highly recommend it if you're ready to up the ante with the Lord and see where He can take you.  I'm thinking I'm gonna throw in- Dubay taught me that I have nothing to lose, and everything to gain!

So, I offer these for your consideration and education and inspiration.  Enjoy.

Peace and prayers to you today.

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