Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Grace and receptivity

Artist: Francisco de Zurbarán

Sadly, many of us think of grace primarily as a doctrine rather than a spiritual practice. This is largely due to theological controversies during the 16th Century that continue to speak to our divisions in the Church today.

But I want to share with you something from the website Spirituality and Practice about grace:

Grace is a gift of God. Because it comes to us at God's initiative, there are some things we can't do about grace. We can't earn it. We can't control it. We don't have to deserve it.

If grace is out of your hands, so to speak, how do you engage in the spiritual practice of grace? Accept that you are accepted. Practice receiving. Receive objects, love, help. Notice when presents and presence come to you without your effort.
We're talking about both receptivity and humility here. Something very difficult for many westerners - especially Americans.


  1. Receiving makes me vulnerable because the idea arises of what will be expected of me because of this gift of graace whatever it may be. The pace of life also makes receiving difficult. Often times, I just rush right by a gift--sometimes to the point of not even recognizing it as a gift. It only takes a moment to allow myself to be enveloped by how wondrous a gift of grace truly is. Receiving sounds so easy, but is so very difficult at times. However, it is well worth the effort.
    Carolyn L.

  2. I agree with Carolyn,

    We probably miss way more than we even know when we are not receptive to the thousands of small graces that are in front of us every day.

    annie c

  3. I like these words on grace very much! We receive so much - I wonder how little I give others in the light of the gifts given to me.

    I think I probably found Spirituality and Practice site from you. I'm participating in the Practicing Spirituality with Quakers e-course right now. Having discussed the gift of silence today on the site, I become once more aware of the gift of grace that in this day of frantic living, I am granted the grace of silence when I seek it.


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