God as we
Calvary Episcopal Church, 273 Park Avenue South on the corner of East 21st Street
in New York City. The nine-story building called Calvary House, which served as the
American headquarters of the Oxford Group, can be seen at the right of the picture, on
East 21st Street (Gramercy Park North). The Rev. Dr. Samuel Shoemaker was the
pastor here from 1928 to 1952.
Step 3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives
over to the care of God as we understood Him.
Step 11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our
conscious contact with God as we understood Him, praying only
for knowledge of His will for us and the power to carry that out.
God as We Understood Him
by Dick B.
'God as we understood Him' .... Where Did This Phrase Originate? .... the very probable, real source -- the Reverend Samuel Moor Shoemaker, Jr., Rector of Calvary Episcopal Church in New York.
Surrender As Much of Yourself As You Can
to As Much of God As You Understand
So they prayed together, opening their minds to as much of God as he understood ... (Shoemaker, Children of the Second Birth, p. 47 ....)
So he said that he would surrender as much of himself as he could, to as much of Christ as he understood (Shoemaker, Children of the Second Birth, p. 25 .... See also, and compare In Memoriam Princeton, The Graduate Council, June 10, 1956, pp. 2-3; and Shoemaker, How to Become a Christian, p. 72).
The finding of God, moreover, is a progressive discovery; and there is so much more for all of us to learn about him. (Shoemaker, How to Find God, p. 1).
Begin honestly where you are. Horace Bushnell once said, Pray to the dim God, confessing the dimness for honesty’s sake. I was with a man who prayed his first real prayer in these words: O God, if there be a God, help me now because I need it. God sent him help. He found faith. He found God . . . God will come through to you and make Himself known (Shoemaker, How to Find God, p. 6.
See and compare: Alcoholics Anonymous, 3rd ed., p. 37: But He has come to all who have honestly sought Him. When we drew near to Him. He disclosed Himself to us!
See also the Bible book so popular with the pioneers -- James 4:8 -- Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you.
Any honest person can begin the spiritual experiment by surrendering as much of himself as he can, to as much of Christ as he understands (Shoemaker, Extraordinary Living for Ordinary Men, p. 76 ....)
... said Sam in substance: You simply start where you are in your understanding. You surrender as much of yourself as you can. To as much of God as you understand. Then, added Sam, God will come through to you, make Himself known, and enable you to understand more. You will come to believe. You will find God, said Sam. God will make Himself known .... He will make known Himself -- God, our Creator!"
"Calvary Church in the Snow" (1893) by Childe Hassam