Risk of surrender

Daily Reading for August 26

John of the Cross speaks to people who feel unable to change. We may have sensed in our lives a call to freedom, to wholeness, to more than what we are now. John felt this as a call to reach out for God. But within us, an unvoiced fear can make change impossible. It is the fear that when we reach, we may not find. It begs the question: If I give myself, will God fill me in my life?

Our being naturally hesitates to say ‘yes’ to a one-way track that may end only in wasteland. This is the undermining fear, and while we may not opt for a different track, we may never fully choose this one.

Here John of the Cross has something helpful to say. Poet, pastor, mystic, John is first a witness to the impact of God in his life. He has taken the risk of surrender, and can speak with the authority of one who has been there. He testifies to a God who, precisely, is pressing in to meet, to change, and to fill us in our deepest need.

From The Impact of God by Ian Matthew, quoted in Wisdom of the Cloister: A Monastic Reader, edited by John Skinner (Image Books, 1999).

Past Posts