Tag Archives: passion

Amy Carmichael and Social Justice

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Tuesday, May 30, 2017

social justice, photo

Amy Carmichael and Social Justice

I’ve come to the end of this excellent anthology of a wealth of different faith traditions. Amy Carmichael is the last of these moving snapshots we glimpse in this book Spiritual Classics. Miss Carmichael was born in Northern Ireland in 1867, came to Christ early in life, and developed a passion for social concerns—what today is known as social justice, in some circles.

At 17, she brought together a group of 500 poor mill girls in a church hall in Belfast. Several years after, she felt a call to the mission field, to Japan. She stayed there for some months, but had to return because of ill health. After several more years, she left for the mission field again: this time, for India.

Over the years she remained in India, Miss Carmichael helped to found a large healing and training center. After a disabling fall in 1931, she lived as an invalid, writing extensively for the rest of her life. She particularly spoke out against the Indian practice of dedicating children to temple gods, and worked to get that practice abolished, with the help of a number of people from India. [1]

As Miss Carmichael herself writes, “The subject was new to us. We knew nothing of the magnitude of what may be called ‘the secret traffic of India’—a traffic in little children, mere infants oftentimes, for wrong purposes, and we did not appreciate, as we do now, the delicacy and difficulty of the position from a Government point of view.” [2] She was dumbstruck at the prospect of many, many children all across India enslaved to service in various temples.

Miss Carmichael has a clear and generous view of the rich, multilayered cultural background of the Indian people. She writes “The true India is sensitive and very gentle. There is a wisdom in its ways, none the less wise because it is not the wisdom of the West.”[3]  At the same time, she is so struck with prayer for those children: if the children exist, she prayed that they might be saved. God heard. God answered. She truly believed in prayer, and acted on her belief.

Dear God, I wish I could have just a portion of Amy Carmichael’s faith. Please help me to have just a little faith. Hear me, I pray.

[1] Spiritual Classics, edited by Richard J. Foster and Emilie Griffin. (San Francisco, California: HarperSanFrancisco, 2000, 360.

[2] Ibid, 361.

[3] Ibid, 362.

@chaplaineliza

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One Day at a Time—with Passion

Matterofprayer: A Year of Everyday Prayers – Tuesday, June 16, 2015

one day at a time, in color

One Day at a Time—with Passion

This is the first day of the rest of your life. It is, truly. I am not being facetious.

At least, that’s what Nathaniel Branden says in his chapter on Handbook for the Soul.

He speaks of the passion needed to go through life, and how much commitment each person needs. That, plus the ability to appreciate the positive things in life, are two key aspects of this journey called life. I think I might even be able to suggest that Branden considers them all-important aspects, even when each individual goes through continued difficulties and challenges.

I read with interest the real-life example Branden gave. He spoke of his first book, and while he began to explain (in words) about this situation years ago, I had a sudden insight about it. As this formely-young man thought at first, he needed to hurry up and get through the writing-part of this book. But then, he thought more and more deeply. It came upon him that his life was the process. Each day, one day at a time. [1]

What a free-ing thought!

This allows me to think more deeply and more kindly of others. (I am not sure exactly how this fits in with this particular chapter. I am just happy that I will not be alone. At least, I do not need to be alone. Or, stay alone.

As Branden says, “Obviously, we cannot control every area of our life. . . . But we do have an enormous degree of responsibility for the shape our lives takes. . . . We are not passive spectators, but active contestants in the drama of our existence.” [2]

Positive thinking, and one day at a time living. I watched as others nourished themselves; and by God’s strength, I can praise God for these basic instructions. Not easy. Not by a long shot. However, now Branden knows. Now, we do, too.

@chaplaineliza

Like what you read? Disagree? Share your thoughts with your loved ones and continue the conversation.

Why not visit my sister blogs, “the best of” A Year of Being Kind.   @chaplaineliza And, read my sermons from Pastor, Preacher Pray-er .

[1] Handbook for the Soul, Richard Carlson and Benjamin Shield, editors. (Boston: Little, Brown & Co., 1995.), 102.

[2] Ibid, 103.