Brother Lawrence lived as a servant in a 17th century monastery–as cook and sandal maker for the community, but he also chose to live, deliberately, in the Presence of his God... This is an awesome reminder during this season when we celebrate the Presence of God in our world, of where our hearts are called to rest…
The Practice of the Presence of God (Excerpted)
Brother Lawrence’s Conversations and Letters
After having given myself wholly to God…I renounced, for the love of Him, everything that was not He, and I began to live as if there was none but He and I in the world.
I worshipped Him the oftenest that I could, keeping my mind in His holy Presence, and recalling it as often as I found it wandered from Him.
At all times, every hour, every minute, even in the height of my business, I drove away from my mind everything that was capable of interrupting my thought of God.
When we are faithful to keep ourselves in His holy Presence, and set Him always before us, this hinders our offending Him, and doing anything that may displease Him. It also begets in us a holy freedom, and if I may so speak, a familiarity with God, where, when we ask, He supplies the graces we need.
By often repeating these acts, they become habitual, and the presence of God is rendered as it were natural to us.
I found myself changed all at once; and my soul, which till that time was in trouble, felt a profound inward peace, as if she were in her center and place of rest. Ever since that time I walk before God simply, in faith, with humility and with love; and I apply myself diligently to do nothing and think nothing which may displease Him. I hope that when I have done what I can, He will do with me what He pleases.
(Download a free e-copy from the Gutenberg Project)
LORD, I have given up my pride and turned away from my arrogance. I am not concerned with great matters or with subjects too difficult for me. Instead, I am content and at peace. As a child lies quietly in its mother’s arms, so my heart is quiet within me. Israel, trust in the LORD now and forever! (Psalm 131-1-3)
Therefore they are before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple; and he who sits on the throne will shelter them with his presence. (Revelation 7:15)