In Autumn of 1936, Evelyn Underhill gave a series of radio broadcasts to present some of the great truths concerning our spiritual life in simple language, “treating it – not as an intense form of other-worldliness remote from the common ways and incompatible with the common life.” Her goal was also to make these talks completely compatible with the Christian faith.

Here are some of my favorite excerpts from her broadcasts. See if you can relate to any of these.

  • Following Jesus and dedicating your life to His Way means discipline of thought and of feeling; a more careful use of leisure; and filling our minds with ideas that point the right way, instead of suggestions that distract us from God and spiritual things.
  • It also means, at some point, sometime given solely to Communion with Jesus; and perseverance in this practice – even though we first seem to get nothing from it.
  • There are few lives with no pauses in the day. Use even the few minutes that you have to cultivate Communion with God, and let the spirit of these few minutes spread through the busy hours.
  • We must expel from our lives any thoughts and acts which are inconsistent with these times of Communion. For unless we are prepared to make God the center of our lives, setting the standard for everything else in our life, then we have no hope for results.
  • “We cannot begin the day with a real act of Communion with God, the Author of peace, and then go on to read a bloodthirsty newspaper at breakfast.”
  • It is this constant correlation between inward and outward that really matters. And this has always been the challenge for humans, because there are two natures in us, pulling different ways, and reconciling them is a long hard task.
  • The spiritual life does not require a definite and exact plan of study. But, it does require a definite plan of life; and courage to stick to that plan, not merely for days and weeks, but for years. This is something which cannot be hurried; but, if not taken seriously, can be infinitely delayed.
  • Looking at people’s behavior, it appears that God is far less important than their bath, morning paper, or early cup of coffee or tea. A life with God must begin with a full and practical acceptance of the truth that God alone matters. This must begin first in our own character and actions; then in our homes; then our surroundings, our workplace, and our country.
  • We must be prepared that this will cost us a lot.; frequently thwarting our own preferences, and demanding real sacrifice. Our goal is to accept our spiritual calling with all it involves. Not merely turning the pages in a magazine and looking at the pictures, but “putting on overalls and getting on with the job.”
  • The real spiritual life must be horizontal, as well as vertical. That means it must spread more and more, it must be larger, fuller, richer, and more generous, than the natural life alone could be. The spiritual life must invade and transform all “homely” activities and practical things. In essence, it means the offering of our whole life to the Father of all life.

Continued blessings on your spiritual walk-through Eastertide …. Peace be with you,

Pastor Bob <><