Henri Nouwen makes me feel better about how God has created me. I would like to think that if he was still alive, we would be good friends. He was a Dutch Catholic priest who has several books published, three of which I picked up at B&N recently.
He wrote this book in response to a friend's request to write a book about the Spirit for him and his friends who are secular.
This book was a great reminder about who I am: a child of God. Nouwen says there are four words that are important words in the Christian life: taken (chosen), blessed, broken, given.
His main point is that we are God's Beloved. Before we were even born, we were loved by God.
"When I know that I am chosen, I know that I have been seen as a special person. Someone has noticed me in my uniqueness and has expressed a desire to know me, to come closer to me, to love me" (53).
"Isn't it easier for us to believe that we are cursed than that we are blessed" (74-75)?
"[T]he joy of life comes from the ways in which we live together and that the pain of life comes from the many ways we fail to do that" (89-90).
"[A]ll we live finds its final significance in its being lived for others" (105).
"Our brokenness opened us to a deeper way of sharing our lives and offering each other hope" (110).
"God not only says: 'You are my Beloved.' God also says: 'Do you love me?' and offers us countless chances to say 'Yes'" (133).
I recommend this book. It was a quick read but a great reminder of how much we are loved by God.