Home is the center of my being where I can hear the voice that says: ‘You are my Beloved, on you my favor rests’…

“…As the Beloved, I can confront, console, admonish, and encourage without fear of rejection or need for affirmation. As the Beloved, I can suffer persecution without desire for revenge and receive praise without using it as proof of my goodness…

“…I leave home every time I lose faith in the voice that calls me the Beloved and follow the voices that offer a great variety of ways to win the love I so much desire…

“Constantly falling back into an old trap, before I am even fully aware of it, I find myself wondering why someone hurt me, rejected me, or didn’t pay attention to me. Without realizing it, I find myself brooding about someone else’s success, my own loneliness, and the way the world abuses me. Despite my conscious intentions, I often catch myself daydreaming about becoming rich, powerful, and very famous. All of these mental games reveal to me the fragility of my faith that I am the Beloved One on whom God’s favor rests. I am so afraid of being disliked, blamed, put aside, passed over, ignored, persecuted, and killed, that I am constantly developing strategies to defend myself and thereby assure myself of the love I think I need and deserve. And in doing so I move far away from my father’s home and choose to dwell in a “distant country.”

— Henri Nouwen reflecting on how he is like the prodigal son, though he has been the “good son”– and priest!– most of his life. Excerpts from multiple pages in The Return of the Prodigal Son.

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2 thoughts on “When We Forget That We Are the Beloved

  1. This was a very profound excerpt. Often times I ask myself why I am so guarded and concerned with others seeing my imperfections or seeing everything I am. The truth is the Lord knows exactly who each of us are and that we have things to work on. I choose life more abundantly through the freedom and security of Christ’s love. Thanks for sharing.

    Like

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