Contemplative Prayer as a Mexican

I resisted silence for a big part of early 30s. I felt so silenced growing up. Mexican kids aren’t allowed to talk back and the narrative is that we don’t have a voice (as kids or mexicans). To my surprise, when I was introduced to more contemplative spiritual practices, it caused a well of emotions…

The Lord’s Prayer: OUR and US

 A friend of mine reminded me the other day how communal the Lords prayer is. It is filled with the words “Our” and “Us”. We know that the Spirit of God is at work when there are more signs of community, mutual understanding, and a turning towards God and one another in peace.  This echoes…

Mutual Empowerment

Since the pain and hurt we feel as a nation is caused by un-wielded power, empower others. How? Here’s an example. A wealthy, white business man took a chance to empower me for a new service at his company. I provide corporate chaplaincy services to a dealer group because someone believed in me and gave…

Spiritual Formation: on Evasion

“Evasion is directly related to both the closeness of God’s approach to us and to our instinctive withdrawal from God‘s presence. Experiences of God as mystery evoke awe, even fear, in the face of the numinous and uncontrollable otherness of God….T.S. Elliot [says]… ‘if you’ve never run away from God, I wonder who your God…

Progression of Desires

During my training as a spiritual director, I was fascinated with how much Ignatian spirituality was focused on exploring desires. It’s one of Jesus’ primary questions: “What do you want?” This was life changing for me because we are basically a big mess of desires! And who doesn’t care deeply about their desires, their wants!…

Advent Hope

Psychology has done a wonderful job of giving us words and concepts such as vulnerability and the false or shadow self to talk about our weaknesses. The AA or 12 step program starts with the admission of powerlessness. The Bible starts (in Genesis) with two concepts of humanity: Original goodness Original sin We need a…

Ten Missiological Principles

Many moments of learning to be faithful lead me back to simple things like God’s desire to be near and close to humanity and creation. The God of the Bible is not one to be distant, full of vengeance, or cold-rigid-frigid. Incarnational, caring, compassionate, just. That’s the God of the Bible. Followers of Jesus are…

A Precious Container of Enough

I’m doing this Ignatian Spirituality Daily Devotional this month. It’s been great! Today’s was especially encouraging. I was listening to it on my run through the neighborhood. A prayer I needed this morning. What I have (and offer) is enough…because it loves You! “Lord, I am a precious container of love, genuine and costly. When…

Being the Beloved

Pain is a teller of grief and loss. [silence] The hardest thing for me to believe is that I am loved and lovable. I can hide behind a veneer of victimization (“what about me” syndrome) as a zone to protect myself. But it leads to more sadness and depression. And then the voice of shame…

Spiritual Awakenings

For a long time, I wanted to be admired and liked, so much that I didn’t know who I really was. As I get into my 40s, I have felt more exposed and in touch with my failings. It’s felt raw and overwhelming at times. But I’m grateful for a spouse and friends who remind…