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Life in God's Now

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About the Author

Elizabeth Ruth Obbard is a Carmelite Solitary living at Aylesford Priory.


From the December 2012 issue of the Julian Meetings Magazine This little book gives us the wise teachings from Jean Pierre de Caussade's 'Self-Abandonment to Divine Providence' in Sr. Elizabeth's lucid and engaging prose. It is illuminated by her relevant and amusing line drawings. De Caussade focuses on finding God in the HERE and the NOW. He emphasises that we should expect to find God in all the ordinariness and 'littleness' of daily life, rather than seeking great deeds or mystical experiences. When we surrender our lives to God we then accept whatever he sends us, and live each moment as it comes, trusting his providence. We should neither dwell on the past, nor worry about the future. When we surrender our lives to God we also accept our particular calling - the thing God asks of us and of no other. Whether it be big or small, if we do not do it, it will remain undone. There is much wisdom in this book, written in a very understandable style, but readers should be aware of two things: Firstly, it was not originally written as a book, but is a collection of notes made of a series of addresses de Caussade gave over a number of years. So there is often a repetition of major points, though with varying emphases, because the addresses could have been given months apart. It may therefore be helpful to read a section at a time, as they would originally have been heard, and ponder each before moving on. Secondly De Caussade was addressing the Sisters of the Visitation, an order of nuns, in Nancy. So the context in which he spoke was very specific. It was also very different to our modern day life in the secular community, yet much of what he said is still very relevant to any Christian today. It is certainly worth reading, and more than once. Deidre Morris

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