1987 – Harper – ISBN: 978-0-06-066367-4
Originally written in Dutch, Henri Nouwen sends letters to his nephew, Marc, on what the Spiritual Life should feel like in this Material World. What sets Nouwen apart from others that purport to do the same thing is his love for Jesus. These letters read in many ways like love letter to Jesus.
He explores different aspects of who Jesus is and how we perceive him. This book was written during the Lent and Easter seasons. The perspective of another tradition during those seasons really gives this book a great feel.
The chapter that has impacted me the most in this book is Letter VI: Jesus: The Hidden God. Too often, we are consumed with publicity and the public nature of life. From Facebook to Twitter to texting, there is little to no time left to have a private relationship with anyone. I can remember a time when cell phones did not exist. I cannot imagine a time when I did not use one.
To live a life devoid of myself and full of God requires me to discipline my heart to have space for God. See God wants to meet with me in the still small space of my heart and no one can take that away from me. It is there that I am truly and deeply free to be able to pursue a life less concerned with seeking “influence, power, success, and popularity.” I can trust, “that God is secretly at work and , in secret, is causing something new to grow (pg. 70).”
This book has impacted me in ways that can only be seen through the way that Jesus changes my life because of it.