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Thursday November 14 – The Beginning of a New Life
Photo courtesy of Ron Barnett
And I saw the holy city, a new Jerusalem,
coming down out of heaven from God,
prepared as a bride adorned for her husband;
and I heard a great voice from the throne saying,
"Behold, the dwelling of God is with men.
He will dwell with them,
and they shall be his people,
and God himself will be with them."
- Revelation 21:2-3
 
"This [Divine] Therapy is very real, very reassuring, and it manifests itself, basically, in the feeling that everything is okay, even though I feel … still under the influence of all the energy centers and … over-identifications … And there are a lot of … things that I'm beginning to see that should be changed that I wasn't ever aware of until this process began.

"And so, basically, it's entering the private room and that's a clear expression of goodwill which is all that God wants. 'Come in and be healed' is the invitation. And the first experience is usually, normally, a period, fairly extended, in which we are finding a new world and it reflects and is manifested in daily life by a greater peace, a greater calm, sometimes joy, and a capacity to be more concerned for others — and not just mentally concerned, but practically concerned for others.

"This is the beginning of the healing process and a taste of what true happiness really is and it's this taste that is to be encouraged to grow and begin to take over all our attitudes and to manifest in all our activity and faculties and bodies, souls, relationships, roles, and everything else, to manifest God's presence."
-Thomas Keating, Monday's video
 
Behold I make all things new.
… Yes, I am coming.
… Amen!
- Revelation 21:5; 22:20
 
Are we willing to let God love us with this much unmerited gratuity?
- Thomas Keating, "The Pursuit of Happiness," Heartfulness: Transformation in Christ
 
A Meditation
 
"Heaven, in the gospels and the Apocalypse (and throughout Scripture) is the metaphor that tells us that there is far more here than meets the eye. Beyond and through what we see there is that which we cannot see, and which is, wondrously, not 'out there' but right before us and among us: God    … his love … mercy … grace … healing … wisdom. …
 
"Heaven. It is not an ending, as we might expect, but a fresh beginning. … Heaven is also more, far more. But the 'more' is the completion of what is, not an escape from it. It is the wholeness of what we now see in part, not the repudiation of it. The vision of heaven is thus thoroughly practical — it keeps us convinced of the reality of all the acts and words whose good sense is disputed by the age we live in. Heaven is not a purple passage tacked onto the end of the Apocalypse to give a flourish to the rhetoric, but an immersion in the realities of God … in our lives… by using stuff that is in our lives right now — places and people, sights and sounds — the invisible and visible parts of our lives are connected in a fresh way. Heaven is an affirmation and confirmation that the beauties and sanctities of the visible creation — tree and rock, Jesus and Eucharist — are not illusions that trick us into what cynics think of as the naïve, useless, and silly practices of love, hope and faith, but are realities that are in strict correspondence with what has been begun in us and will be completed in us. 
 
"… We enter heaven not by escaping what we don't like, but by the sanctification of the place in which God has placed us. … This is not a long (eternal) weekend away from the responsibilities of employment and citizenship, but the intensification and healing of them. …
 
"Heaven in the vision, remember descends. The consequence is that 'the dwelling of God is with men.'"
- Eugene Peterson, Reversed Thunder, The Revelation of John & The Praying Imagination
 
To Practice
 
Examen: Continue to observe your attitudes about God, yourself, your journey. Can you feel the stirrings of a new life?  

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