Thursday, November 29, 2012

Some Motivation

“Of course motivation is not permanent. But then, neither is bathing; but it is something you should do on a regular basis.”

“Among the things you can give and still keep are your word, a smile, and a grateful heart.”

“If you go out looking for friends, you’re going to find they are very scarce. If you go out to be a friend, you’ll find them everywhere.”

“Some people find fault like there is a reward for it.”

“Ask yourself a question: Is my attitude worth catching?”

“Duty makes us do things well, but love makes us do them beautifully.”

“Failure is an event not a person.”

“Make failure your teacher, not your undertaker.”

“Anything worth doing is worth doing poorly--until you can learn to do it well.”

“Outstanding people have one thing in common: an absolute sense of mission.”

“The greatest of all mistakes is to do nothing because you think you can only do a little.”

“If God would have wanted us to live in a permissive society He would have given us Ten Suggestions and not Ten Commandments.”

“When you put faith, hope and love together, you can raise positive kids in a negative world.”

“You never know when a moment and a few sincere words can have an impact on a life.”

“If standard of living is your major objective, quality of life almost never improves, but if quality of life is your number one objective, your standard of living almost always improves.”

“The chief cause of failure and unhappiness is trading what you want most for what you want right now.”

“When obstacles arise, you change your direction to reach your goal; you do not change your decision to get there.”

~Zig Ziglar (died yesterday)

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Friendship

“Friendships begun in this world will be taken up again, never to be broken off.”
~St. Francis de Sales

Monday, November 26, 2012

When I found...

"When I found Your words, I devoured them;
    they became my joy and the happiness of my heart,
Because I bore Your name,
    O LORD, God of hosts."
~Jeremiah 15:16

Sunday, November 25, 2012

The King Of Love My Shepherd Is

The King of love my Shepherd is,
Whose goodness faileth never,
I nothing lack if I am His
And He is mine forever.

Where streams of living water flow
My ransomed soul He leadeth,
And where the verdant pastures grow,
With food celestial feedeth.

Perverse and foolish oft I strayed,
But yet in love He sought me,
And on His shoulder gently laid,
And home, rejoicing, brought me.

In death’s dark vale I fear no ill
With Thee, dear Lord, beside me;
Thy rod and staff my comfort still,
Thy cross before to guide me.

Thou spread’st a table in my sight;
Thy unction grace bestoweth;
And O what transport of delight
From Thy pure chalice floweth!

And so through all the length of days
Thy goodness faileth never;
Good Shepherd, may I sing Thy praise
Within Thy house forever.

Words: Psalm 23; Henry Baker & Music: St. Columba (ancient Irish melody)

Friday, November 23, 2012

War in the Heavens

“Where is the road of modern culture taking us? The real question is not whether there are intriguing, entertaining, and even edifying details along the route, but what is the final destination. Are we Christians asking this question as we consume contemporary cultural material? Or are we gradually losing our bearings, the moral compass spinning aimlessly? What is the dominant terrain, the pitch of the slope? I believe it is heading downward, and the occasional bumps in the road that offer a sense of upward mobility contribute to an illusion. In order to see clearly the extent to which we have been absorbed by the illusion, we first must recognize how strong is the need in human nature for confidence in the world, and the instinctive aversion to the threat of ‘negativity’ or ‘intolerance.’

...

Imagine two mothers, or two fathers, having a discussion about what kind of cultural material is best to give their children: One parent is cautious about the way most contemporary fantasy mixes good and evil (and sometimes inverts them). The other parent has grown accustomed to the septic environment and is more trusting of the surrounding culture. When he tastes the mixture his tongue reassures him that it is honey.

‘It is sweet,’ he declares. ‘It is good. The virus, the bacteria, the toxin you speak of is a figment of your imagination, the product of your irrational fears about contamination!’

‘Do not be deceived by the taste,’ says the cautious parent. ‘It is better for people not to consume such mixtures.’

The trusting parent says with a certain tension: ‘So you want to quarantine your children, lock them away in an antiseptic environment!’

‘Not at all,’ replies the other. ‘Regardless of the exact ratio of healthy and unhealthy materials, is it not obvious that consuming any virus, toxin, or virulent bacteria is detrimental to health? I simply do not want to feed this particular honey to my children.’

‘But by not giving them this honey you are harming your children.’

‘Explain to me, precisely, how I am harming my children by abstaining from giving them infected food.’

‘It is not infected! Besides, you’re going to isolate your children, make them strangers in their own culture. Do you want them to be weird?’

‘But I just saw you dip your finger into a septic tank and lick it. That seems a little weird to me.’

‘It is not a septic tank. It is a very large reservoir containing, admittedly, some unpleasant things, but also many good things. We need to focus on the good. You really have a problem with negativity, you know. It’s making you intolerant.’

‘Yes, I am intolerant.’

A shocked pause. ‘Pardon me?’

‘I’m intolerant of anything that will make my children sick.’

‘Are you accusing me of making my children sick?!’

‘I respect your right to make your own decision. I have no respect for the contents of the septic tank.’

‘What?’

‘I was making a distinction.’

And so it goes—the seemingly irresolvable, supposedly rational dialogues of the Western world as it loses its bearings, its sense of the actual moral order in the universe.”
~Michael O'Brien (excerpt from the article: War in the Heavens)

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Pumpkin pies and Thanksgiving dinner

 
Thank the Lord for family, friends, pumpkin pie, Thanksgiving dinner, etc.

Pumpkin pies and Thanksgiving dinner, Jack Delano, photographer, Part of: Farm Security Administration - Office of War Information Photograph Collection (Library of Congress) 1940

You are my God, I thank You.
My God, I praise You.
Give thanks to the Lord for He is good;
for His love endures for ever.
~Psalm 118:28-29
 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Wingèd Herald Of The Day

The wingèd herald of the day
Proclaims the morn’s approaching ray:
And Christ the Lord our souls excites,
And so to endless life invites.

‘Take up thy bed,’ to each He cries,
Who sick or wrapped in slumber lies;
‘And chaste and just and sober stand
And watch: My coming is at hand.’

With earnest cry, with tearful care,
Call we the Lord to hear our prayer;
While supplications, pure and deep,
Forbid each chastened heart to sleep.

Do Thou, O Christ, our slumbers wake:
Do Thou the chains of darkness break;
Purge Thou our former sins away,
And in our souls new light display.

All laud to God the Father be,
All praise, eternal Son, to Thee;
All glory, as is ever meet,
To God the Holy Paraclete.

~Words: Aurelius Prudentius (348-413), translated from Latin to English by John Neale & Music: William Knapp

Monday, November 19, 2012

Deeds and Actions

“Our actions have a tongue of their own; they have an eloquence of their own, even when the tongue is silent. For deeds prove the lover more than words.”
~St. Cyril of Jerusalem

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Closing Prayer

Ever the richest, tenderest glow
     Sets round the autumnal sun—
But there sight fails: no heart may know
     The bliss when life is done.

Such is Thy banquet, dearest Lord;
     O give us grace, to cast
Our lot with Thine, to trust Thy word,
     And keep our best till last.
~John Keble

Friday, November 16, 2012

If only in one small corner...

“With the arrogance of youth, I determined to do no less than to transform the world with Beauty. If I have succeeded in some small way, if only in one small corner of the world, amongst the men and women I love, then I shall count myself blessed, and blessed, and blessed, and the work goes on.”
~William Morris (from: The Well At The World's End)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Lux Umbra Dei


“Light is the Shadow of God”
  

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Great Things

“To achieve great things, two things are needed; a plan, and not quite enough time.”
~Leonard Bernstein

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Development of the Soul

“The meaning of earthly existence lies not, as we have grown used to thinking, in prospering but in the development of the soul.”
~Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Monday, November 12, 2012

Soldiers

“The true soldier fights not because he hates what is in front of him, but because he loves what is behind him.”
~G. K. Chesterton

“I always considered statesmen to be more expendable than soldiers.”
~Harry Truman

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Boys

"There comes a time in every rightly constructed boy's life when he has a raging desire to go somewhere and dig for hidden treasure."
~Mark Twain

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Then he saw...

“Then I saw what appeared to be a sea
of glass mingled with fire. On it were
standing those who had won the victory
over the beast and its image and the
number of its name. They were holding
the harps of God in their hands and were
singing the song of Moses, the servant
of God, and the song of the Lamb:
Great and wonderful are Your deeds,
O Lord God the Almighty!
Just and true are Your ways,
O King of the ages!
Who will not fear You, O Lord,
and glorify Your name?
For You alone are holy.
All nations will come and worship You
for Your judgments have been revealed.”
~Revelation 15:2-4

Friday, November 9, 2012

Attack!

“My center is giving way.
My right is in retreat.
Situation excellent.
I attack!”
~General Ferdinand Foch

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Again

Oh Lord, God of our fathers
this day let it be known
That You Lord,
Are God of the present tense

Oh Lord, Father of history
this day let it be known
That You Lord,
Are present in our human events

Answer me, Oh Lord
Let Your people know
That You’re turning our hearts
Back to You…Again

Holy Holy
You alone are true
Holy Holy
You alone are true
Turn us back towards You

~Jon Foreman

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Don't forget

“They may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel.”
~Carl Buechner

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

A Higher Vantage Point

“Be not a slave to the apparent, but seek the perspective of a higher vantage point. Climb the mast with patience, endure the abstinence of the immediate for the sake of what is beyond the arc.”
~Michael O’Brien

Monday, November 5, 2012

God Knows (a.k.a. The Gate of the Year)

And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year: “Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.”
And he replied:
“Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God. That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”
So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night. And He led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.

So heart be still:
What need our little life
Our human life to know,
If God hath comprehension?
In all the dizzy strife
Of things both high and low,
God hideth His intention.

God knows. His will
Is best. The stretch of years
Which wind ahead, so dim
To our imperfect vision,
Are clear to God. Our fears
Are premature; In Him,
All time hath full provision.

Then rest: until
God moves to lift the veil
From our impatient eyes,
When, as the sweeter features
Of Life’s stern face we hail,
Fair beyond all surmise
God’s thought around His creatures
Our mind shall fill.

~Minnie Louise Haskins

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Sweetest of all Gifts

“We love You, O our God; and we desire to love You more and more. Grant us that we may love You as much as we desire, and as much as we ought. O dearest friend, who has so loved and saved us, the thought of whom is so sweet and always growing sweeter, come with Christ and dwell in our hearts; that You keep a watch over our lips, our steps, our deeds, and we shall not need to be anxious either for our souls or our bodies. Give us love, sweetest of all gifts, which knows no enemy. Give us in our hearts pure love, born of Your love to us, that we may love others as You love us. O most loving Father of Jesus Christ, from whom flows all love, let our hearts, frozen in sin, cold to You and cold to others, be warmed by this divine fire. So help and bless us in Your Son.” Amen.
~St. Anselm

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Ephesians 1:17-18

May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you a spirit of wisdom and perception of what is revealed, to bring you to full knowledge of Him. May He enlighten the eyes of your mind so that you can see what hope His call holds for you, what rich glories He has promised the saints will inherit.
 

Thursday, November 1, 2012

A Gathering of Spirits



“Jan Richardson’s ‘A Gathering of Spirits’ evokes the thin place in the landscape of the Christian year when heaven and earth meet and we remember that what holds us together is not limited by time. At All Saints Day we stand together not only with those who are physically present with us but also with those who linger close in spirit. She writes of creating the collage: ‘With every piece, another prayer; with every layer, another memory of those who have passed through the thin, thin place. Remember how their presence lingers. A communion of saints, say, to sustain us when the way grows daunting. Or call it this: a gathering of spirits.’”
~Peter Fung