Wednesday, April 23, 2014

A Violent Lifestyle

"The rush and pressure of modern life are a form, perhaps the most common form, of its innate violence. To allow oneself to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender to too many demands, to commit oneself to too many projects, to want to help everyone in everything is to succumb to violence. More than that, it is cooperation in violence. The frenzy of the activist...destroys his own inner capacity for peace. It destroys the fruitfulness of his own work, because it kills the root of inner wisdom which makes work fruitful." 
- Thomas Merton

I am extremely guilty of letting my life get out of control: there are just too many meetings to attend, customers to help, jobs to design, and homework to do.  How are we supposed to fit all this in?  And do people actually get the "recommended hours of sleep?" Doubtful. On top of that, there are constantly the needy, hungry and naked to help, feed and clothe.  I feel as though I am fulfilling my duties not only on earth, but also to Christ.  Therefore it's justified... right?

The theme of stillness has invaded my life lately.  Slowing down is necessary because my health and relationships depend on it.  In fact I was at a Thomas Merton meeting last night at Ursuline College where the above quote was mentioned and it cut me like a knife.  Busyness a form of violence?!  Absurd.

Well...maybe there is something to that.  What harm am I causing myself and others by being so consumed in doing things?  Perhaps this is why I am so drawn to the monastic life.  The simplicity, contemplation and sereneness speaks to me.  I long for a life where there is enough time to "be still."

Why do I feel the need to be accomplished each day? Might that be merely fulfilling society's pressures?  And aren't we called to be "in the world but not of it"?

"The frenzy of the activist...destroys his own inner capacity for peace." 

I need peace.  I need stillness.
Lord, help me.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Edmund's Delights (and other bookish food)

The White Witch & Edmund

"It is dull, Son of Adam, to drink without eating," said the Queen presently.  "What would you like best to eat?"

"Turkish Delight, please, your Majesty," said Edmund.

The Queen let another drop fall from her bottle on to the snow, and instantly there appeared a round box, tied with green silk ribbon, which, when opened, turned out to contain several pounds of the best Turkish Delight. Each piece was sweet and light to the very centre and Edmund had never tasted anything more delicious.  
excerpt,  The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

As BuzzFeed gains stamina for readers who want to know random lists of information, I have found myself drawn to the clever site like a bug to the fire.  Quick snapshots of 20 things I didn't know about Paris? Sure!  30 April Fools Pranks? Of course!
Turkish Delights, from SprinkleBakes

But the one that has really grabbed my attention, from their book side, is the 11 Recipes for Bookworms!
Who wouldn't want to learn to make the infamous meals from our favorite novels?

Of course, I perused the list quickly, seeing which I would recognize and try first.  Much to my surprise, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe made it on there with Turkish Delight!  I have always wondered what this sweet goodness was all about, and even as I read ingredient labels on pre-packaged treats, I've never quite grasped the concept.  However, now that there is a recipe available - and a quite simple one at that - I will certainly be trying my hand at creating some of the deliciousness Edmund is fooled by.

What about you?  Have you ever created a dish inspired by a favorite novel?
I'd love to know how it turned out!

Turkish Delight Recipes found here: SprinkleBakes, About, AllRecipes
An interesting article on Americans' take on Turkish Delight found here: ChristianityToday

Monday, April 7, 2014

Faith Collectives

The title of this blog comes from C.S. Lewis' quote on working through theology with a pencil and pipe. I've found, that while certain revelations come in the study of Scripture, much of it happens while in community.

The Canton Faith Collective of Radial Church

Faith collectives have been the key to Radial's spiritual growth as our church family works on what it means to live as a body of believers. I just wanted to give a shout out to the people who have encouraged me and continue to help me dig through the Word, whether or not I have a pencil and pipe in hand at the time. :)