Bearing Fruit | A Reflection by Henri Nouwen

Alongside my work as Executive Director of the Pro Deo Foundation, I also have the great joy of serving on the board of directors for the Henri Nouwen Society in Toronto, Canada. The late Henri Nouwen was a profound spiritual writer—a Catholic priest and psychologist—who spoke of the immense love of God of all broken persons, and the Image of God in which all persons are made. Henri was a broken person who wrote from his place of weakness and struggle while guiding his readers to find rest and hope and healing in the presence of a loving Savior.

Henri has much to say to those with whom we at Pro Deo are called to serve. In a sense, his writing can be like a rudder for us as we long to lead and develop our work from our hearts.

This reflection from Henri guides and shapes us so well:

We belong to a generation that wants to see the results of our work. We want to be productive and see with our own eyes what we have made. But that is not the way of God’s Kingdom. Often our witness for God does not lead to tangible results. Jesus himself died as a failure on a cross. There was no success there to be proud of. Still, the fruitfulness of Jesus’ life is beyond any human measure. As faithful witnesses of Jesus, we have to trust that our lives too will be fruitful, even though we cannot see their fruit. The fruit of our lives may be visible only to those who live after us.

What is important is how well we love. God will make our love fruitful, whether we see that fruitfulness or not.

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