Henri Nouwen on Thanksgiving

The following quote by Henri Nouwen was included in the latest Wheaton Academy faculty/staff bulletin, and I just had to pass along the blessing. For a beautiful article on Henri Nouwen, read “The Holy Inefficiency of Henri Nouwen,” written by Philip Yancey shortly after Nouwen’s death in 1996.

dried flowers“Thanksgiving comes from above. It is the gift that we cannot fabricate for ourselves. It is to be received. It is freely offered and asks to be freely received. That is where the choice is! We can choose to let the stranger continue his journey and so remain a stranger. But we can also invite him into our inner lives, let him touch every part of our being and then transform our resentments into gratitude. We don’t have to do this. In fact, most people don’t. But as often as we make that choice, everything, even the most trivial things, become(s) new. Our little lives become great—part of the mysterious work of God’s salvation. Once that happens, nothing is accidental, casual, or futile any more. Even the most insignificant event speaks the language of faith, hope, and above all, love. That’s the Eucharistic life, the life in which everything becomes a way of saying “Thank you” to him who joined us on the road.”

May our “little lives” become great with God’s overwhelming love–and may it begin in us this very day.

Happy Thanksgiving,

Jen

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