STEINHARDT

Nicolae Steinhardt 186_Iasi 3

Citate din autorul meu preferat:

“Hristos ca gentlemen şi cavaler. La diavolul contabil nu încape nici ţesătura cea mai mică, Hristos, dintr-o dată şterge un întreg registru de păcate. Hristos, boier, iartă totul. A şti să ierţi, a şti să dăruieşti, a şti să uiţi. Hristos nu numai că iartă, dar şi uită. Odată iertat, nu mai eşti sluga păcatului şi fiu de roabă; eşti liber şi prieten Domnului…

‘Hristos este întotdeauna paradoxal şi acţionează fără greş în mod neaşteptat. Pascal spune că dacă Dumnezeu există, El nu poate fi decât straniu. Fapt este că Hristos în viaţa pământească a acţionat întotdeauna altfel decât ne-am fi aşteptat. Unde nu credeam că nu are ce căuta, acolo se află. Cu cine credeam că n-are să stea de vorbă, cu acela stă. Parcă dinadins, spre a ne scandaliza, a ne trezi din orbire, din obişnuinţă, din tabieturi spirituale, pentru a ne şoca.

DESPRE FRUMUSETEA UITATA A VIETII

Un articol mai vechi din ‘Dilema’ – editorial al domnului Andrei Plesu. E bine sa revii peste ani fiindca ceea ce are valoare se pastreaza proaspat si relevant chair si peste ani.

Daca ma gandesc bine, reprosul esential pe care il am de facut tarii si vremurilor este ca ma impiedica sa ma bucur de frumusetea vietii.

Din cand in cand, imi dau seama ca traiesc intr-o lume fara cer, fara copaci si gradini, fara extaze bucolice, fara ape, pajisti si nori. Am uitat misterul adanc al noptii, radicalitatea amiezii, racorile cosmice ale amurgului. Nu mai vad pasarile, nu mai adulmec mirosul prafos si umed al furtunii, nu mai percep, asfixiat de emotie, miracolul ploii si al stelelor. Nu mai privesc in sus, nu mai am organ pentru parfumuri si adieri. Fosnetul frunzelor uscate, transluciditatea nocturna a lacurilor, sunetul indescifrabil al serii, iarba, padurea, vitele, orizontul tulbure al campiei, colina cordiala si muntele ascetic nu mai fac de mult parte din peisajul meu cotidian, din echilibrul igienic al vietii mele launtrice. Nu mai am timp pentru prietenie, pentru taclaua voioasa, pentru cheful asezat. Sunt ocupat. Sunt grabit. Sunt iritat, hartuit, coplesit de lehamite. Am o existenta de ghiseu: mi se cer servicii, mi se fac comenzi, mi se solicita interventii, sfaturi si complicitati. Am devenit mizantrop. Doua treimi din metabolismul meu mental se epuizeaza in nervi de conjunctura, agenda mea zilnica e un inventar de urgente minore. Gandesc pe sponci, stimulat de provocari meschine. Imi incep ziua apoplectic, injurand “situatiunea“: gropile din drum, moravurile soferilor autohtoni, caldura (sau frigul), praful (sau noroiul), morala politicienilor, gramatica gazetarilor, modele ideologice, cacofoniile noii arhitecturi, demagogia, coruptia, bezmeticia tranzitiei. Abia daca mai inregistrez desenul ametitor al cate unei siluete feminine, inocenta vreunui suras, farmecul tacut al cate unui colt de strada.

Am ajuns sa ma comport ca si cum Hrebenciuc si Cozmanca, Sechelariu si Vanghelie, Ciorbea si Mihaela Tatu, Andreea Marin si Adrian Nastase, Constantinescu si Agathon, Talpes si Garcea ar exista cu adevarat. Colectionez antipatii si prilejuri de insatisfactie. Scriu despre mizerii si maruntisuri. Bomban toata ziua, mi-am pierdut increderea in virtutile natiei, in soarta tarii, in rostul lumii. Am un portret tot mai greu digerabil. Patriotii de parada m-au trecut la tradatori, neoliberalii la conservatori, postmodernistii la elitisti. Batranilor le apar frivol, tinerilor – reactionar. Una peste alta, mi-am pierdut buna dispozitie, elanul, jubilatia. Nu mai am ragazuri fertile, reverii, autenticitati. Ma misc, de dimineata pana seara, intr-un univers artificial, agitat, infectat de trivialitate. Apetitul vital a devenit anemic, placerea de a fi si-a pierdut amplitudinea si suculenta.

Respir crispat si pripit, ca intr-o etuva. Cand cineva trece printr-o asemenea criza de vina e, in primul rand, umoarea proprie. Te poti acuza ca ai consimtit in prea mare masura imediatului, ca nu stii sa-ti dozezi timpul si afectele, ca nu mai deosebesti intre esential si accesoriu, ca, in sfarsit, ai scos din calculul zilnic valorile zenitale. Dar nu se poate trece cu vederea nici ambianta toxica a momentului si a veacului. Suntem napaditi de probleme secunde. Avem preocupari de mana a doua, avem conducatori de mana a doua, traim sub presiunea multipla a necesitatii. Ni se ofera texte mediocre, show-uri de prost-gust, conditii de viata umilitoare.

Am ajuns sa nu mai avem simturi, idei, imaginatie. Ne-am uratit, ne-am instrainat cu totul de simplitatea polifonica a lumii, de pasiunea vietii depline. Nu mai avem puterea de a admira si de a lauda, cu o genuina evlavie, splendoarea Creatiei, vazduhul, marile, pamantul si oamenii. Suntem turmentati si sumbri. Abia daca ne mai putem suporta. Exista, pentru acest derapaj primejdios, o terapie plauzibila? Da, cu conditia sa ne dam seama de gravitatea primejdiei. Cu conditia sa impunem atentiei noastre zilnice alte prioritati si alte orizonturi.

Different Kind of IQ Test



There has been a lot written lately on the subject of idolatry. Tim Keller’s most recent book highlights this issue. In a ‘Leadership’ magazine article, John Ortberg posed some helpful questions particularly for those involved in church leadership. All of us are in danger of taking our eyes of Jesus – as the Lord of the church and allow ourselves to be so driven and preoccupied by church that she becomes an idol. Here are the questions:

So I’ve started using a little IQ test, to help me assess my Idolatry Quotient. You can pass it along to someone who needs it:

—Where does my sense of security come from—from God, or from how my church is doing?

—After a worship service, do I find myself grateful that God is God and feeling joyful that I get to live in his care? Or—if I’m honest—are my emotions dictated more by how many bodies were in the room?

—Do I spend more time thinking about God, or thinking about how to make my church/ministry do better?

—How do I feel when the prospect for more prizes in the church tournament—recognition, praise, reputation, applause—get taken away from me?

—Does my sense of identity flow more out of my relationship with God or out of my performance at church?

—How much do I sacrifice to know God better versus how much do I sacrifice for my church to work better?

NEW START #2

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Looking back with a repentant spirit is not enough… Repentance is an active progressive and decisive process. The apostle Paul usess the imagery of a race in an athletics competition. Frustratingly, we all have made resolutions that we failed to keep. I believe that a thoughtful, planned assessment might be more helpful than just a reaction on a whim. Donald Whitney writes extensively on spiritual disciplines and here are some of the questions he would suggest to be helpful at the beginning of a New Year or at the time of your birthday.

  1. What’s one thing you could do this year to increase your enjoyment of God?
  2. What’s the most humanly impossible thing you will ask God to do this year?
  3. What’s the single most important thing you could do to improve the quality of your family life this year?
  4. In which spiritual discipline do you most want to make progress this year, and what will you do about it?
  5. What is the single biggest time-waster in your life, and what will you do about it this year?
  6. What is the most helpful new way you could strengthen your church?
  7. For whose salvation will you pray most fervently this year?
  8. What’s the most important way you will, by God’s grace, try to make this year different from last year?
  9. What one thing could you do to improve your prayer life this year?
  10. What single thing that you plan to do this year will matter most in ten years?  In eternity?

NEW START #1

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At the beginning of a New Year – this is a good time to reflect on both the past as well as the future. The best way to move forward is to look back at our lives, examining where we failed and learning to truly repent (turn around). I found this prayer (part of the confession in a Presbyterian liturgy) very moving, challenging and helpful:

God, my Father.

You asked for my hands, that you might use them for your purpose. I gave them for a moment, then withdrew them, for the work was hard, inconvenient, and mundane. You asked for my mouth to speak out against injustice. I gave you a whisper that I might not be accused of being aligned with the wrong party or ideology. You asked for my eyes to see the pain of poverty. I closed them, for I did not want to see, choosing instead to believe the myth that all that really tried would be fine financially. You asked for my life, that you might work through me for your glory. I gave a small part that I might not get too involved, because I am busy.

Lord, forgive my calculated efforts to serve you—only when it is convenient for me to do so, only in those places where it is safe to do so, and only with those who make it easy to do so.

Father, forgive me, renew me, send me out as a useable instrument, that I might take seriously the meaning of the gospel.

For your Son Jesus’ sake, who withheld nothing.

Amen