If you are looking for my blog titled, The Contemplative Catholic Convert, you are at the right spot.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


Abraham said to his servant . . . “[Y]ou shall not take a wife for my son from the daughters of the Canaanites, among whom I live, but you will go to my . . . relatives, and take a wife for my son Isaac. The servant said to him, “Suppose the woman is not willing to follow me to this land; should I take your son back to the land from where you came?" Then Abraham said to him, "Beware that you do not take my son back there! (Genesis 24:2-6).

I understand Abraham’s fear for his son to return to his former land. Abraham knew Isaac’s relationship with God could be irreparably damaged if he returned to the place from which God had called them.

“Beware,” he warned his servant, “that you do not take my son back there.”

Have you ever noticed how, without warning, the lure of our old life can beckon us to return? Sometimes the attraction openly woos us with soft caresses and seductive whispers. More often, though – at least in my experience – it arrives gift-wrapped in subtle nuances, cradled in the arms of a disappointment with God, a loss, or a sadness.

Yet in whatever form it arrives, it is always booby-trapped.

And we invite disaster when we so much as toy with the wrapping.


Elizabeth Mahlou said...

I would think, then, that your old life was in some way pleasant. Mine was not; I have almost always looked only forward, and when I have looked back it has been to analyze what happened, certainly not to go there. Actually, "You Can't Go Home Again", as expressed in Tom Wolfe's novel, is closer to the reality than any gentle call to an old life would have one believe.

Richard Maffeo said...

Thanks for taking time to comment, Elizabeth. I guess my post was unclear. When I wrote about the seductive call to the old life, what I meant was that Sin sometimes beckons us to return to what we once considered pleasurable. We find allusion to Sin's backward call in the book of Hebrews 11:13-16 and Hebrews 11:23-26.

Speaking only for myself, I know I have enough of St. Peter in me -- who swore he would never desert his Lord, and yet denied three times with curses that he ever knew Jesus - I have enough of Peter in me to be very cautious about where I let my mind and eyes stray.

I hope that helps to clarify what I meant. Again, thank you for taking the time to comment. I appreciate that.