“The spiritual life does not remove us from the world but leads us deeper into it.” Henri Nouwen
Henri Nouwen was a Dutch Catholic priest, professor and well-known writer.
I recently finished one of his books, The Return of the Prodigal Son: A Story of Homecoming. Nouwen takes his personal experience by observing The Return of the Prodigal Son, an oil painting by Rembrandt which is at the Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia, and goes to the Gospel of Luke in order to write a beautiful message about the parable that we all know as “The Prodigal Son”.
Nouwen’s writing is simple, but profound. His writing is poetic, full of compassion, and challenges everyone to think and reflect about our roles in life and who we are in the context of the parable.
Henri could not tell if Rembrandt’s painting inspired him to observe the parable from a different perspective or if the parable made him see Rembrandt’s painting with different angles. Either way, he is able to transmit his message and writing in a way that helps us find ourself in the younger and older son, but he challenges us to grow in order to become like their father.
As I keep digging into Nouwen’s writings to find precious pearls and hidden treasures, I invite you to explore his beautiful works, good heart and inspiring thoughts as well.