Frank C. Laubach wrote many letters to his father during his missionary years in the Philippines. Excerpts have been gathered into a little, but powerful, book – Letters by a Modern Mystic. Dallas Willard writes in the foreword, “You hold in your hands a treasure provided by Christ to all people who long to live their real life today in the constant presence and power of God.”
At midlife, missionary Frank Laubach wrote, “This present [moment], if it is full of God [and it is], is the only refuge I have from poisonous disappointment and even almost rebellion against God.”
Midlife is frequently accompanied by a heightened awareness of our losses, unfulfilled dreams, and relational disappointments. Often, deep longings for intimacy, for God, and for meaning re-emerge. Facing the realities of our existence takes courage; feeling overwhelmed by the challenge is not unusual.
Suffering in silence and loneliness can be risky. But when the inner journey is attended to with care, this period of angst and agony of spirit can begin to blossom into a vitality of love, joy and peace, together with an intimate knowing of the loving presence of God.
During a period of solitude, Laubach recalled an old hymn that warmed and strengthened him. He was also challenged to live its reality:Moment by moment, I’m kept in His love; Moment by moment, I’ve life from above; Looking to Jesus till glory doth shine; Moment by moment, O Lord, I am Thine.
Laubach’s letters contain many treasures which reveal his intentional learning to practise the presence of God, moment by moment. This short book is to be savoured and lived.
Joyce G. Richardson * Tumaini Counselling Centre * Nairobi, September 2012