Monday, 24 April 2017

Imitating a Master Imitating the Master.

Well, here we are.

Lent is done for another cycle having culminated in the chaos of Holy Week and the
divine re-ordering of Resurrection Sunday.

Soon enough the white of the liturgical wheel will roll into that long season of green.  I usually dread the monochromatic monotony, but not this year.  This year I feel like some pruning I've been doing is about to yield some new growth.  In anticipation of that new growth and with an eye to sustaining it, I picked up a little book from my shelf by Thomas á Kempis.

If that name is unfamiliar, take a gander at this:
(kudos to for their awesome biographical section)

"We must imitate Christ's life and his ways if we are to be truly enlightened and set free from the darkness of our own hearts. Let it be the most important thing we do."
Sir Thomas More, England's famous lord chancellor under Henry VIII
(and subject of the film A Man for All Seasons) said it was one of the three books everybody ought to own. Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Jesuits, read a chapter a day from it and regularly gave away copies as gifts. Methodist founder John Wesley said it was the best summary of the Christian life he had ever read.

They were talking about Thomas à Kempis's The Imitation of Christ, the devotional classic that has been translated into over 50 languages, in editions too numerous for scholars to keep track of 
(by 1779 there were already 1,800 editions).  Little is known of Thomas himself, and he is known for little else—although this one contribution to history seems to be enough.

You can read more here, or you can join me as I work through this devotional classic in the weeks and months to follow.

Holy God, I give you thanks that this road of discipleship - as demanding as it is - is a well worn one.
Thank you for the wisdom and example of those who have gone before.  Grant that these words will help me to hear and honour your Word as I seek to follow you in a way that others in turn will follow.  Amen.

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