Quotable Friday, Vol. 19

“I have always responded with breathless excitement to anyone who has ever said that God does not live in a dogmatic scripture or in a distant throne in the sky, but instead abides very close to us indeed–much closer than we can imagine, breathing right through our own hearts.  I respond with gratitude to anyone who has ever voyaged to the center of that heart, and who has then returned to the world with a report for the rest of us that God is an experience of supreme love.”

Elizabeth Gilbert,

Eat, Pray, Love

Yes, I’m finally reading this book, after giving it to my sister as a Christmas gift two years ago and since having it recommended to me dozens of time by dozens of women.  And I like it.  I especially like hearing thoughts on spirituality from someone who was not raised “in the church.”  Given that I grew up hearing people praying, speaking in tongues, and singing to an invisible God, it is hard for me to imagine how a person manages when she tries to grasp these concepts as a fully developed adult.  I love that, in this quote, the author states the gospel in non-churchy terms, and confesses that her heart responds to the good news of a loving God who wants an extremely intimate relationship with us.  It reminds me that what I’ve learned on my own “spiritual voyage” – that God wants to be close to me (of all people!) and that He is the love I’ve been looking for – is really good news, that other people want to hear.

I know this is very basic, but sometimes when one grows up in the church, personal faith becomes private faith very quickly, and then you forget how much other people are still giving up on their quest for the love that is theirs for the asking.


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