The week is beginning its spin cycle. Monday morning. I have much to do today to prepare for the trip to Birmingham which begins tomorrow. I still need to get that boy taught too.
My brain is whirling this morning, though, in a good productive way. I have three books in front of me which I plan on taking to 'Bama. One is my study called "Abba's Child" by Brennan Manning. Chapter 2, wow, hits hard. Here's a line that made me cringe and confess last night:
"Prayer is death to every identity that does not come from God." I confess to grappling after false idols lately and feeding a false identity which has its importance away from God's light. We all mingle in the dappled shade from time to time, but wrongful priorities have a way of stealing your substance. I've been walking there more lately, and I know why in some ways. Manning says it here too in another way:
"The false self specializes in treacherous disguise. He is the lazy part of self, resisting the effort, asceticism, and discipline that intimacy with God requires." (42) Yes, I've been lolling about, looking at the sparkly, lit up filler items. I've desired distraction; I've resisted prayer during my times of restlessness or anger or sadness. This is an amazing chapter; unfortunately, I'll be gone on Wednesday when the group discusses their reaction. The chapter made me peer more suspiciously at our upcoming trip too -- what are we feeding? if changes happen, how can we assure that they're not only for insubstantial gain? It's a powerful temptation to ward off.
St. Augustine knew about temptation. I picked up a bargain 'The Confessions of Saint Augustine" a couple of years ago, and before my bath last night, I scouted for an unread title to take with me into the warm bubbles (the luxurious Western woman's options!). Wow. So far, in this weighty-worded, exclamative book, I see Augustine exploring the nature of sin in man, in our infancy even, probing how things were created, and why we need the love of God. Amazingly enough, I see a hint of the 'collective unconscious' ideas in his writing. Did Augustine come first and then Jung? God came first says the Bible which Augustine confirms. Aug. speaks of time in an interesting way. I like it.
Then, finally, "Hope for the Troubled Heart" by our own Billy Graham. It's lovely so far, and narrows in on the heart of the problem and the antidote.
Well, I've got lots more reading and pondering to do. However, life means much more than reading (darn!:).
But before I go, just a word to say that my daughter turns 16 today. She is on her way to adulthood which will be here soon. Unbelievable. I look at her and resist this age in a way -- it's full of worry and resentment; a hard reflection of your parenting up to this date. Please, God, be with her in a loving active way, and teach me to love her better each day. Only you can work and soothe.