Both trust and gratitude require the courage to take risks because distrust and resentment, in their need to keep their claim on me, keep warning me how dangerous it is to let go of my careful calculations and guarded predictions.

Did I offer peace today? Did I bring a smile to someone's face? Did I say words of healing? Did I let go of my anger and resentment? Did I forgive? Did I love? These are the real questions. I must trust that the little bit of love that I sow now will bear many fruits, here in this world and the life to come.

That joy can be seen on the faces of the many simple, poor, and often suffering people who live today among great economic and social upheaval, but who can already hear the music and the dance in the Father's house.

To be grateful for the good things that happen in our lives is easy, but to be grateful for all of our lives—the good as well as the bad, the moments of joy as well as the moments of sorrow, the successes as well as the failures, the rewards as well as the rejections—that requires hard spiritual work.

In the face of the oppressed I recognize my own face, and in the hands of the oppressor I recognize my own hands. Their flesh is my flesh, their blood is my blood, their pain is my pain, their smile is my smile.

Our clinging to the opinions of others reveals how superficial we are. We have little to stand on. We have to be kept alive by adulation and praise. Those who are deeply rooted in the love of God can enjoy human praise without being attached to it.

In solitude we realize that nothing human is alien to us.

You can only seek God when you have already found God. The desire for God's unconditional love is the fruit of having been touched by that love.

Christian leadership is a dead-end street when nothing new is expected, when everything sounds familiar and when ministry has regressed to the level of routine.

Theological formation is the gradual and often painful discovery of God's incomprehensibility. You can be competent in many things, but you cannot be competent in God.

While optimism makes us live as if someday soon things will soon go better for us, hope frees us from the need to predict the future and allows us to live in the present, with the deep trust that God will never leave us alone but will fulfill the deepest desires of our heart... Joy in this perspective is the fruit of hope.

Spiritual formation is not about steps or stages on the way to perfection. It's about the movements from the mind to the heart through prayer in its many forms that reunite us with God, each other, and our truest selves.

Christian leaders are called to help others affirm this great news, and to make visible in daily events the fact that behind the dirty curtain of our painful symptoms there is something great to be seen: the face of God in whose image we are shaped.

A large part of the father's life had been spent waiting. He could not force his younger son to come home or his older son to let go of his resentments. Only they themselves could take the initiative to return.

You don't think your way into a new kind of living. You live your way into a new kind of thinking.

Peacemaking is a full-time vocation that includes each member of God's people.

In solitude we become aware that we were together before we came together and that life is not a creation of our will but rather an obedient response to the reality of our being united.

Friendship has always belonged to the core of my spiritual journey.

People who read your ideas tend to think that your writings reflect your life.

There are two extremes to avoid: being completely absorbed in your pain and being distracted by so many things that you stay far away from the wound you want to heal.

Most Christian leadership is exercised by people who do not know how to develop healthy, intimate relationships and have opted for power and control instead. Many Christian empire-builders have been people unable to give and receive love.

Distance never seperates two hearts that really care, for our memories span the miles and in seconds we are there. But whenever I start feeling sad cuz I miss you I remind myself how lucky I am to have someone so special to miss.

Dare to love and to be a real friend. The love you give and receive is a reality that will lead you closer and closer to God as well as those whom God has given you to love.

If God is compassionate, then certainly those who love God should be compassionate as well.

A good death is a death in solidarity with others. To prepare ourselves for a good death, we must develop or deepen this sense of solidarity.

God does not love the younger son more than the elder. In the story the father goes out to the elder son just as he did to the younger, urges him to come in, and says, My son, you are with me always, and all I have is yours.

There is a deep hole in your being, like an abyss. You will never succeed in filling that hole, because your needs are inexhaustible. You have to work around it so that gradually the abyss closes.

The man who can articulate the movements of his inner life need no longer be a victim of himself, but is able slowly and consistently to remove the obstacles that prevent the spirit from entering.

I also learned afresh that friendship requires a constant willingness to forgive each other for not being Christ, and a willingness to ask Christ himself to be the true center of the relationship.

Solitude is the furnace in which transformation takes place.

Emit gratitude as though it was done.

The Christian leaders of the future have to be theologians, persons who know the heart of God and are trained - through prayer, study, and careful analysis - to manifest the divine event of God's saving work in the midst of the many seemingly random events of their time.

Spiritual reading, therefore, is slow, deliberate, meditative reading in which we allow the words to penetrate our heart and question our spirit.

We are called to witness, always with our lives and sometimes with our words, to the great things God has done for us.

I am the prodigal son every time I search for unconditional love where it cannot be found.

I know now that I have to speak from eternity into time, from the lasting joy into the passing realities of our short existence in this world, from the house of love into the houses of fear, from God's abode into the dwellings of human beings.

Are we really servants when we can become masters again once we think we have done our part or made our contribution? Are we really servants when we can say when, where, and how long we will give of our time and energy? Is service in a far country really an expression of servanthood when we keep enough money in the bank to fly home at any moment?

Spiritual fatherhood has nothing to do with power or control. It is a fatherhood of compassion.

The leap of faith always means loving without expecting to be loved in return, giving without wanting to receive, inviting without hoping to be invited, holding without asking to be held.

What matters here is that the moment Cleopas and his friend recognized Jesus in the breaking of bread, his bodily presence was no longer required as a condition for their new hope.

When two people have become present to each other, the waiting of one must be able to cross the narrow line between the living or dying of the other.

Jesus lived this joy of the Father's house to the full.

There is so much rejection, pain, and woundedness among us, but once you choose to claim the joy hidden in the midst of all suffering, life becomes celebration. Joy never denies the sadness, but transforms it to a fertile soil for more joy.

Jesus.. says, 'Let go of your complaints, forgive those who loved you poorly, step over your feelings of being rejected, and have the courage to trust that you won't fall into an abyss of nothingness but into the safe embrace of a God whose love will heal all your wounds.

The mystery of one man is too immense and too profound to be explained by another man.

We will encounter great obstacles and splendid views, long dry deserts and shadow-rich trees. We will have to fight against those who try to attack and rob us. We will also make wonderful friends. We will often wonder if we will ever make it, but one day we will see coming to us the One who has been waiting for all eternity to welcome us home.

When suddenly you seem to lose all you thought you had gained, do not despair. You must expect setbacks and regressions. Don't say to yourself "All is lost. I have to start all over again." This is not true. What you have gained you have gained....When you return to the the road, you return to the place where you left it, not to where you started.

God is the hub of the wheel of life. The closer we come to God the closer we come to each other. The basis of community is not primarily our ideas, feelings, and emotions about each other but our common search for God. When we keep our minds and hearts directed toward God, we will come more fully together.

Every time you do something that comes from your needs for acceptance, affirmation, or affection, and every time you do something that makes these needs grow, you know that you are not with God. These needs will never be satisfied; they will only increase when you yield to them.