Deeper thoughts - Monasticism and the inner spirit
Updated: Jul 26
I was recently awakened to a sleeping giant - the deeper thinking of the ancients. There are those who have though long and hard about life without the constant clutter of noise that goes on today.
The book of common prayer - 1662 - morning & evening every day
The works of MG Wright
The mystical ways of our spirits and our soul... how do they work or manifest or indeed function?
Do we need to worship something bigger than ourselves? Is that what creates the restlessness within a man's sou?
How about becoming a friend to the Book of Psalms? Singing to God?
What about this thought: Do you know what you do not know?
It is not all about results. Nor about likes and shares. it is about creating inner lasting change. Deciding what I want and then dedicating myself to getting it.
There is word called Sanctified. Do we know and understand what it means? Do we have any inkling of the depth of this word? And the feelings associated with attaining sanctification? I know not.
We are all human. And therefore we are all messed up. None of us are perfect, we are just people all on our personal journey. Let us share kindness with everyone around us as we travel on this journey.
Athonasius - The incarnation - Deep thoughts
Here's a brilliant concept. Read and stop. Stop when your brain has absorbed something and let it settle there. Think about it and turn it around in your mind. Slow down and enjoy the journey
St Bernard - Stop Trying to Assert Yourself
And so the learning continues...
Romans 7 makes no sense when you read it as a stand alone chapter
However, having completed the reading of Romans 6, 7 and 8 you will understand more completely what it is saying. It is a challenge to the mind, to the soul to know that without God, more specifically Christ, we are dead. Our purpose is to Bear Fruit to God. In order to do so we must die to the selfish life and be made alive by the spirit of Jesus to live for God and bear fruit to him.
In Romans 7 I discerned that I was once alive apart from the law. So there was no burden on me, for I lived along the way, without really a care. As soon as I know the law, then I am under a new commandment. now that I know, so I am dead! Deep.
Reading in Psalm 55 it calls upon us to pray, three times a day, to trust God to come to our rescue and not to worry or to focus on the things around us, for God will take care of those by himself.
My prayer is to be received by God, to live according to His word, to be free of the burden of money, to help people walk right in this life and so discover God. I call to God and the Lord answers me.
I need help. I must acknowledge that I need help. God is silent and present.
What is it that you desire? Is it greatness? That is a lot of pressure. How about to serve? Now that is a good place to start!
Mark & Craig - 21 May 2020
It is all about humility
Wait in faith - make every effort
Grace upon grace - I am open and ready
Praying is telling - meditating is listening
Let Christ do it for you
Turn to Proverbs and Psalms
Read 2 Peter 4
2 Peter Ch 1 - May 20th 2020
It is all about adding to your faith. Add goodness, add knowledge, add self control, add perseverance, add godliness, add kindness, and finally add love.
It means to me, take the little faith that you have and make every effort to add these things to your faith. Starts with moral behavior, add good behavior, then learn and grow, then be self-controlled and disciplined to follow through on what you have learned. Then stick at it no matter what. This is perseverance. Endure whatever it takes to get to your goal. Be godly. the act of becoming like God. Be like Him. Be kind, practice kindness and finally be love. Do not try to be loving, be love.
Peter wrote this at the end of his life and he said he made every effort ensure that we remember this, it is so important that the man who was so close to Jesus considers it of prime importance that he makes every effort to ensure we remember this.
If you do not you will be nearsighted and blind and forgetful. Do whatever it takes to grow in these things.
Seek Real transformation not shallow change
Seek to become stable, focused and balanced as a person.
I run the race to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Straining - pulling hard towards the goal
Always going forward. forgetting what is behind, both the good and the bad and straining towards what is ahead. it is incomparable. Forget past victories and forget past failures.
The past is not where glory and greatness or salvation lies. It is only in what lies ahead.
I will is useless
I want to is hopeless
I should is guaranteed failure
I could means you have no intention whatsoever of doing anything about it
I am doing it now! This is the power of transformation
Believing is not enough
Self help is not enough
You want to go on a journey where you spin your brain
You will face challenges - you will refocus and go again
Growth becomes my natural outcome
Mark and Craig 28-5-20202
It is precious to get older, for in age we understand far more. I do not judge myself. No. Let go and let go of all things.
Be zealous to be passive... zealous passivity. Be radically self honest. find out the truth of what is within. Know what I can do and do it
In all things and at all times. God has to be God.
Jesus said to the rich young ruler, sell all your possessions. He went away sad, but it does not say that he did not follow. Maybe he did later.
Psalm 46:10 - cease striving
Titus 3:5 He saved us, not because of our righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us by rebirth by the holy spirit.
Eph 2:8 It is by grace that I have been saved. His love is for us. He is rich in mercy. He made me alive when I was dead. it is by God's grace alone, through faith, not works.
Make every effort to do what leads to peace and mutual edification.
Become who I should be
God is in charge, not me!
Remember, when you feel that nothing is happening, things are happening. It is somewhat like making compost. You cannot see anything happening. It is very black and lots of dirt stacked up and just looks like nothing is going on. However, deep down inside the pile there is something magical happening. There is compost being created. Later it will be extremely useful to make plants grow and it will be rich and fertile. It starts off as dirty uselsss discarded stuff and eventually becomes of value. So remember, while it appears that nothing is happening, it is!
Humility is the core. I don't choose. Practice makes mastery.
Learn to go deeper and deeper. Memorize scripture so that you may have it whenever you need it.
Remember Psalm 46:10... be still and know that I am God.
Let it soak in.
Go to Psalm 91, 95 and 100. it is not about doing.
Be ready, sit with it and do nothing.
Zealous passivity. Be ready and eager to be ready, but wait.
Psalm 107:10 - 16
He, He, He, He, He, He
He humbled them. He saved them. The active agent in all things is God.
Thanksgiving! Practice it.
Radical self-honesty. Practice it
Be zealous to be patient.
Read Pilgrim's Progress.
Have the patience to wait for God's Grace
Georgio - 5th June
Everything is possible for him who believes
God wants to have a conversation with us. He wants to be with me on a heart level and know my emotions. God delights in my conversation
Help me overcome my unbelief.
Listen to the voice of Jesus. The Holy Spirit is a coach, is a guide for me
God is a father, with a sense of humor. like a dad. Enjoy being loved by God.
Take time to learn to pray. Pray together.
Come back to God. Like a small child will run away, go astray. Come back to God.
The Wheel of Awareness by Dr Daniel Siegel
There are the first 5 senses
6th sense: gut sensations, breathing/respiratory, heart, muscles, bones, blood, etc
7th sense: mental activities such as thoughts, feelings, memories, beliefs, emotions, images, plans, and anything else on your mind.
8th sense: interconnectedness, the ability to connect to yourself, your neighbors, all other humans, plants, and Planet Earth as a whole, bringing compassion and kindness to others and to yourself.
Meditations with Georgio 10th June.
John 12:49 & 50
Jesus spoke only what God commanded him to say. He only said what God told him to say. God told him how to say it!
When we talk do we think about what God has told us to say and how to say it? I think not. Jesus was completely surrendered to God. At a level that his words were those that were given him to say and he delivered them in the way that he was commanded to deliver them. Total surrender.
Living in the Presence of God is only possible when we totally surrender to Him. When we reach the point that we only say what God has told us to say and we say it the way that He has told us to say it. That requires first listening to how God wants us to speak. Then remembering what He has told us to say. Then saying it the way that He has told us to say it. This is quite a thing.
His commands lead to eternal life. The whole time Jesus was on earth there was a chance that he would go his own way.
Jesus commanded us to walk as he did. "'I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.
Drive away everything that is not of God, nor from God.
11th June Mark & Craig
Each day pray and connect. Lawrence the monk was a potwasher. He wrote incredible letters - He was a potwasher for the Lord.
Matt 16:19 "I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven."
In other words, if you let go of things on earth you will not carry them beyond this life. If you hang on to them, then you will have them aftwards.
Life is kind of like bowling lanes with bumpers. Left hand side is failure and sin, right hand side is victory and God's presence. We tend to go through life bumping from one side to the other. Self awareness. I am the greatest of sinners! Learn who I am really...
It is Amazing Grace that saves me and brings me home.
Concentrate on learning to be in the presence of God.
Let His presence satisfy me completely. For what could there possibly be that is better than being with God? There is nothing.
As I open my eyes to the wonder of the Kingdom of God and to walking in His presence all day, every day, and being taken care of by Him, and filling my heart and my time with conversations with God, so my life will flourish and I will be closer to Him and know His power, His grace and His love. Wow!
20th June 2020 - A personal devotion on NEW
"New", which was put upon my heart as I walked and thought upon God and my newfound relationship with Him.
1. It must all be new. Every bit. Nothing old may remain, for it will destroy the new, in one way or another.
Matt 9:17, Luke 5:37-39, Mk 222 New wine into new skins, new onto old will not work
I must not patch up my old life with something new. I must not tear something new to fix something old. Neither must I try to put something new into something old. The consequence of all of these actions shall be worse than the beginning. The cloth will tear worse than before, the wineskins and the wine will all be lost.
No, for this "New", I must start off completely from scratch. Everything must be new. A new cloth, a new wineskin, new wine. These work. The old is of no use.
2. It takes a new heart and a new spirit - and then I shall live a new life by the Spirit of God within me - there are no part measures, it must be ALL.
Ez 11. remove all detestable things and all abominations. Have singleness of heart. God will remove the heart of stone and give a heart of flesh. A new Spirit he will give. For then I may walk by his statutes. I will be His and he will be my God.
Ez 18. The soul who sins is the one that will die. IF I turn from ALL my sins, keep God's law, do right, I WILL LIVE! I must repent and turn from ALL transgressions. Cast away ALL transgressions and FASHION FOR MYSELF A NEW HEART AND A NEW SPIRIT. Repent and live
Ez 36. The Lord will bring me back, he will ALSO sprinkle me, I will be clean from ALL impurities and idols. A NEW heart and a NEW spirit I will receive. The LORD will put HIS Spirit in me!!!!!! and CAUSE me to walk in His ways.
Gal 5:16 I will walk by the Spirit of God and I will not sin, for I will be alive by the Spirit!
Rom 8:12 It is an obligation. Put to death, by the Spirit, the deeds of the body and LIVE!
3. I shall no longer live, for I shall be a NEW creation - sin will be gone for I only live because of God's Spirit in me, who cannot sin
2 Cor 5:15 I should no longer live for myself, but for Jesus. He died and rose again. The Spirit is a deposit guaranteeing what is to come. IF I am in Christ, then, THE NEW CREATION HAS COME! The old has gone and the new is here. All this is from God. He does not count my sins against me. Be reconciled to God. He made His Son to be my sin so that I MAY BE THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF GOD
Col 3 Set my heart on things above. Set my mind on things above.
I have died.
Christ is my life.
When He appears before God, I will also appear before God, for I am hidden in Christ.
I put to death earthly nature, rid myself of anger, rage, malice, slander, filthy language and do not lie.
I have a NEW self, it is being renewed in his knowledge in the image of God.
In the IMAGE OF GOD!
Clothe myself (or I shall be naked) with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and ;patience. Bear with one another, forgive one another, as I am forgiven.
Put on love. Jesus' peace rules my heart. Be thankful.
Do everything in Jesus' name, giving thanks to God the Father, through Jesus.
4. A NEW heaven and a NEW earth for those whose names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life
Is 66:22 There shall be a new heaven and a new earth, people from distant lands will proclaim God's glory among the nations
2 Peter 3 Live Holy and Godly lives as you look forward to God's day. He will reveal a New Heaven and a New Earth where righteousness dwells.
Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, to Him be the eternal glory.
Rev 21 A NEW heaven and a NEW earth. The glory of the nations will enter. Nothing impure will enter it.
ONLY those whose names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life.
THE PRACTICE OF THE PRESENCE OF GOD
We should focus our life's effort on being
THE MOST PERFECT WORSHIPPER OF GOD I CAN POSSIBLY BE
The greater perfection a soul aspires after, the more dependent it is upon Divine grace.
The goal and objective of all my thoughts is God.
Rise after falling, frequently renew by acts of faith and love, I can only think of God
Become Wholly God's
Live as though there is just He and I in the world
Drive away everything that has the power to interrupt my thought of God
It is all by the mercy of God, and His goodness. Not of me, for I have none.
By habit, the presence of God becomes natural for me
The first 10 years, I suffered much. I found myself changed all at once, my soul found profound peace.
I walk simply before God in faith, with humility and love
Do nothing and think nothing that may displease Him
I have no will, but that of God
A secret conversation with God causing me joy and inward raptures.
30 years, he considers himself wretched. I am similar. And yet the Lord invites me into His presence that I may be with Him. I desire Him to make His perfect image in my soul, making me, like Him.
I desire only Him, and to be wholly devoted to Him.
Hope in God, more than ever.
40 years, be always with God, do nothing, say nothing, think nothing that displeases God.
Practice the presence of God and you will soon become spiritual. Put my whole trust in HIM.
I need not cry very loud. He is nearer to us than we are aware of
Let us live and die with God
And with a general confidence in God, with love and humility.
The remedy of a wandering mind is to confess our sins, and humble ourselves before God.
To be focused in prayer is to practice focus on God at all times.
80 years old, Let us pray for one another, and set about it seriously, the Practice of the Presence of God.
Our only business in this life is to please God.
Let us begin in earnest, renounce all that is not Him
With His grace, we can do all things, without we can only sin.
Escape danger with God's help - continuous prayer - being with Him - often thinking - becomes a Holy habit
Knowing God leads to love. To know we must think, and by love we shall think. We will be with our treasure.
The glorious employment of a Christian, live and die with Christ.
1 July 2020
Angels are watching
According to the Bible, angels are watching over me and talking to God on my behalf. What a wonderful thing. My life is cared for so much that God has elected to appoint an angel to watch over me. This means that I am special, unique, loved, cared for and protected.
What if Jesus walked by, would you listen?
You are busy, on your way to work and there is a guy standing on a small box on the corner of the street. He's talking and there is crowd gathered around him. Would you stop? Would ou listen? If it was Jesus would you have the time to stop and listen to what he has to say? Would you take time out of your working routine, or your shopping activity, or social calendar to pay attention? And more than that, would you actually take the time to think about what he was saying? And finally, on top of all of that, would you try to understand and apply what he was teaching? Or would you consider him so religious nut.
One day they kill the man by public execution. What would be your reaction?
A few days later the newspapers say that actually he is alive and well and walking around. Would you declare it the latest great stunt, an incredible trick? Or would you submit to thinking that it is true?
Very hard to answer this question? The same as reading the Bible and believing what you read there. If you can read it adn beleive it then you would believe it in real life.
Thoughts with Georgio
God is preparing a place for us. Jesus in fact goes to make it ready.
Jesus has chosen a place for me and he calls, "Mark, Mark, I chose this place for you. A familiar, wonderful place of comfort and security". Would you turn it down?
How could you turn it down when the greatest of the great is inviting you to come and sit there?
Do we understand truly what a life with God is all about? Do we really know what it means to be chosen by the creator of all this? Or are we blinded by the things around us, things that we can feel and touch and count and therefore discount the unseen. Can you see love?
Can you see patience?
Can you see empathy? No!
But you can sure feel them.
In the darkest days remember this: Be humble. Submit to God. Trust Him!
For if you claim to have faith, is it not the darkest hour that will test your faith the most? Is it not the darkest hour where you must hold on the tightest to what has been promised? Is it not in the most difficult of times that you stay calm and say, surely the Lord will take care of this? If it is not in these times then what is your faith made of? Candy floss and ice cream? For high days and holidays? That would not be faith. A fool can be happy surrounded by toys and shiny things.
It is on these difficult days that we prove our faith. We show that we love God by obeying His commands, by living in faith. We do not complain, for that would not be faith. By it's very nature we would be questioning the foundation of faith. For faith is found in trials. Faith is found in the unseen and as yet not-come-to-pass.
No, this is your chance. Your break. This is where you stand up and say, I will overcome. I will prove that I have faith by staying faithful in these darkest of times. That is faith. To be righteous and to continue to obey the word of God.
These dark days are where you build a testimony to your love for Him and where you prove that you are trusting and trustworthy.
Jesus says, I am here. I love you. I feel your pain. You can tell me how you feel. Then move on, for he says, Do not let your heart be troubled. He is preparing a place for us. John 14 says so.
In dark days depend upon God. Get those around you to help you to depend upon God. And the Lord will act when it is time.
Crash through temptation. Stopping is not it. Its when the desire changes that you overcome. You must overcome your desires. Build accountability. Overcome your emotions. Be cautious of the high and the low for both are a lack of faith. Walk by the Spirit not by human based desire. Not by flesh. Not by hormones. Receive the Spirit for in the Spirit is life. Learn to live by the desires of God. Learn to appreciate things and let them go when they start to draw me away from God. Live into God's desire by walking by the Spirit. If you do not have enough faith, live into it. Just do the will of God. 1 John 2:15-17 is all about the world. If you love the world then love for God is not in you.
What is love for the world?
Anything that distracts from loving God.
This is profound. Literally anything that draws you away from the love of God is the love of something other than Him. Therefore we should focus on doing the will of God. 1 Peter 4 1-6 is profoundly clear. If you are in God you are done with the world. Turning away from the world is derided by many. It says so here. However it also says that they will have to give an account to Him who is ready to judge.
Live according to God in regards to the Spirit. We will be judged according to human standards in regards to the body.
1 Thess 5:18 Rejoice at all times, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances for this is the will of God concerning you in Christ Jesus.
Quite a calling... so simple and yet not easy.
A conversation with Craig - 12th July 2020
The authority that Jesus had to clean the temple was an energizing force. it was positive. It was done in obedience to God. John 5:19 says that Jesus always does what the Father has given him to do and only says what he has been told to say.
Zealous Passivity re-emerges
Psalm 121 is the ladder of ascent to God
Psalm 131 - My heart is not proud.
Completeness, balanced, counter balanced. The power of quietness
Zeal is eager desire. Th
Talk to me about Jesus or do not talk to me
Being the object of action - not it's cause.
Ready for what comes from outside.
Zealous - Lectia Divina - sit with it and wait for it to speak to me
WAIT and be READY
Zeal - by the Spirit - by weakness revel in the place of weakness. Love it.
Quietness - be in the dark, but in God's grace
Home - be at home where I am. A weak human. Not haughty.
Remember the marriage feast - many were unwilling to come. I must be willing even if I am not capable.
Am I neglecting? Obtuse? Drifting? Not attuned?
Yearn! Desire. Be dressed and ready.
A higher presence of God by day end.
Do what I can do. Be ready
No matters are too great for me. I am counter balanced.
The Spirit will not give me more than I can handle.
A NEW CONVERSATION WITH CRAIG 23RD JULY 2020
The world creates a frenzy and a pressure on our spirits
Listen to God's Spirit within us
Be carerful how you listen
When you ask for a sign what is it that you want?
When you say you are not a good person, you are right, if you say, without God...
My monastary is my life. My calling is never about myself. It's about the others. Those that I can serve. My calling needs to be about those who are around me. How can I serve them?
Be passively zealous.
My failures in life are not just about what I am able to do, and then fail to do. They are about living to a higher level. it takes time.
Change my core desires.
Find a new place of new desires
Reflect upon sharing.
I am an idiot, without God. With God I am a child of God with the hope of eternal life.