If you are like me, sometimes books will sit on my shelf for years. Sometimes books will be gifted to me or sometimes by accident a book will be delivered to me instead of the person I purchased it for. Such was the case, when Into Your Hands, Father: Abandoning Ourselves to the God Who Loves Us by Fr. Wilfred Stiniseen arrived at my door from Amazon. I had to reorder it for my brother-in-law priest and I quickly picked up the thin but super meaty in content book about surrender.
My life has been all but normal this year. I think for most of us that has been the case.
The book came in the mail last summer, with the best of timing to prepare me for the hardest of years by far in my 37 years of life. The Heavens have been shaking. Things have been hard. Healing has taken place. But embracing God’s will in the present moment has been a challenge. This book has helped me so much in regards to how to surrender and how to keep my interior peace.
To give you a taste of the book I will quote here from the chapter entitled “Accepting God’s Will” where he quotes Staret Silvan and then goes into deep reflection on how to live this out more fully. It says,
“How can you know that you are living in God’s will? This is the sign: If you are troubled about anything, that means you are not completely abandoned to God’s will. The one who lives according to God’s will is not troubled about anything. If he needs something, he surrenders it and even himself to the Lord. He places it in His hands. If he does not get what he needs, He remains calm, as thought he had received it. He is not afraid, whatever happens, for he knows that it is God’s will. When he is afflicted with illness, he thinks, I need this sickness, otherwise God would not have sent it. He thus preserves peace in body and soul.”
The book is broken down into three chapters; one is accepting God’s will, two is obeying God’s will and three is being an instrument of God.
The book dives into each of these three with practical examples, quotes from scripture and the saints, including St. John of the Cross and St. Therese and the theology behind abandonment. He references De Caussade many times from his book entitled “Abandonment to Divine Providence” as well. It’s as if all the best nuggets from great books and saints have been wrapped up nicely in this book to help you get the essence of surrendering to God and how to pour it into your daily life. Overall, it expresses the central theme to the spiritual life, which is complete surrender to each moment so you may fully live in the will of God.
I love this book.
I pick it up frequently and reread pages or chapters or the whole thing. It’s short enough to do that. It has given me tips of peace in moments of chaos, it has laid out how God’s will manifests itself in every circumstance of our life, and it has given me a deeper desire to embrace the present moment.