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Brother Lawrence – Continual Conversation With God

November 19, 2009 by  
Filed under Brother Lawrence, Dan Burke, Meditations, Practicing Presence, Prayer

BrotherLawrence_300x400Dear Reverend and very honored Mother,

To become truly spiritual the heart must be empty of all other things, since God desires to be its only Master. And since He cannot be its Master without emptying it of all that is not Himself, He is prevented from doing all that He desires if it is not empty.

There is no manner of life in the world more sweet or more delicious than continual conversation with God. They alone can understand it who practice it and savor it. I do not advise you, however, to practice it for this motive. The desire for spiritual consolation must not be our purpose in carrying on this practice. Instead, let us do it out of love for God and because it is His will.

If I were a preacher, I would not preach anything else than the practice of the presence of God; and if I were a spiritual director, I would advise it to everyone – so much do I believe it necessary and yes, even easy.

Oh! If we only knew how much we need the grace and help of God, we would never lose sight of Him, not even for a moment. Believe me; make a holy and firm resolve never voluntarily to withdraw yourself from God’s grace from this time on. Live the rest of your days in God’s holy presence, even if He judges it fitting to deprive you of all consolations of Heaven and earth for the sake of His love. Put your hand to the plough. If you work as you should, be assured that you will soon see the fruit of your efforts. I will help you through my prayers, poor though they may be. I commend myself earnestly to your prayers and to those of your community, being to all, and to you more particularly.

Your humble servant,

Brother Lawrence

Taken from the third letter of “Practicing the Presence of God

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About Dan Burke

Dan is the founder of Catholic Spiritual Direction, the Avila Institute for Spiritual Formation, and author of the award winning book, Navigating the Interior Life - Spiritual Direction and the Journey to God. Beyond his “contagious” love for Jesus and His Church, he is a grateful husband and father of four, the Executive Director of and writer for EWTN’s National Catholic Register, a regular co-host on Register Radio, a writer and speaker who provides online spiritual formation and travels to share his conversion story and the great riches that the Church provides us through authentic Catholic spirituality. Dan has been featured on EWTN’s Journey Home program and numerous radio programs. If you have an interest in having Dan come speak at your parish or Catholic event or group, contact us at rcspiritualdirection@gmail.com or call 818-646-7729.

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  • Denise

    I appreciate Brother Lawrence alot more then any of the deCasaude writings. I look forward to more of them. Thank you for adding this.

    Denise

    • Dan Burke

      Dear Denise in Christ,

      You are welcome. Though de Caussade has been life changing for me, I know his writings are not for everyone. Brother Lawrence certainly has a much more gentle feel about him. Is that why you prefer his writings to de Caussade?

      Pax Christi,

      Dan

  • Denise

    Dear Dan

    I find writings like deCausade overwhelming. I had the same experience when reading the diarys of Sister Faustina. It took me some time to learn that it is ok to not like a writing style such as deCausade and it is a relief to now understand this.
    I like Brother Lawrence for his humble and gentle
    approach. I really appreciated the first entry of his on this site about distractions in prayer. It was the most useful information that I have found about this subject.
    Keep up the good work. This site is one of my favorite sites to visit and I drop by a couple of times a week.

    Warmly and with blessings,

    Denise

    • Dan Burke

      Dear Denise in Christ,

      Very good. I am glad you found relief and an author that is life-giving to you.

      God bless,

      Dan

  • http://google Mary

    Brother Lawrence, you have no idea how much you have helped me since I joined your website. Your gentle advice, guidance and encouragement are like a balm on my fragile heart and soul. I have a passionate wish to know, love, worship,adore and thank my God for all He has done for me and to remain in His Presence throughout my days. I have begun to read St.Faustine Daiary and joined the Cenacle of the Divine Mercy here in Nairobi. Oh, it is so consoling and encouraging when what we learn during our Hours of Praise and Worship and Classes is confirmed by what you write in your Spiritual Directing articles. Your humility touches the very strings of my heart which give me hope that I am on the right path. With you guiding me and the Divine Mercy Cenacle, I shall surely never go wrong or allow the momentary doubts and discouragements which attack me from time to time to discourage me. May God bless you. I will always remember you in my Prayers and I am touched to read you will pray for all of us who love you so much for your loving advice and dedicaation to help God’s souls on their journey home through this Website

  • Annie D’Couto

    Dear Br.Lawrence, Happy that I have joined this site. I got it thru surfing. I read 3 of yr earlier writings and everything in it was so true. And today’s write-up made me feel so close to God and re-confirming many of my experiences thru many of His ‘True’ chosen ones. Why I say True is because many come in disguise, using Christ’s name. And ofcourse, He said by the fruits one will come to know the true prophets/messengers of Christ. But the enemy is so cunning, he that he is capable to do make-belief things to trick people. It’s only when one is in UNION with the Lord, He gives us the discerment to differenciate between the good/bad furits…………and the ‘True ones’. At times, one might fall for the false ones, but if one walks continuously, he/she could be saved.

    Br.Lawrence, as you mentioned, yes, it’s so true, so awesome and such a wonderful experience when we feel the REAL PRESENCE OF THE LORD. I am 37yrs now, and my first annointing was at the age of 16. Many strange things had happend n taking place in my life. Since, I have a DEEP immense faith in Christ and His Spirit keeps moving upon me, I have a great relationship with God – like a FAther n daughter. Only those who can understand that ‘LOVE N FEELING’ will know wht I experience. Well, above all one must be obedient, ready to carry His Cross n do His Holy Will; before the SWEET LOVING relationshio begins b/w God n His child. We must be prepared to face many trials n tests in our lives. I speak thru experience……tought ones…from the day I was conceived in my mother’s womb. But God kept His promise as in Jeramiah: He knew me before even I could be formed………..and that He has a great plan for my future. We all know we are created for a good purpose and will be called accordingly to fulfill His Purpose.

    Br.Lawrence, thank you for inspiring and bringing many to Christ. Keep up your good work and Pls pray for me to always be an obedient servant/child of God.

    God bless you,

    Anna Maria D’Couto

  • http://www.blestatheist.com Elizabeth.Mahlou

    Your blog is one of my favorites. I subscribe to it and read it regularly, though I do not often comment. You are a blessing to the spiritual blogging community.

    As for Brother Lawrence – he is one of my favorite reads, one that I stumbled onto nearly immediately after my conversion and whose words (and those of others about him) made much sense since I was experiencing a constant Presence. I still experience it frequently. It is only my fault that it is not constant. I get “too busy” — then have to pray words of penitence because how can anyone be “too busy” for God?! I just love the way He forgives and takes up residence once again!

    • Dan Burke

      Dear Elizabeth in Christ,

      Thank you for your kind words of encouragement. They mean a great deal to us. You and those like you are the reason we make the effort.

      Pax Christi