Regret

December 6th, 2016

Regret is a tough but fair teacher.
To live without regret is to believe you have
nothing to learn,
no amends to make, and
no opportunity to be braver with your life.

— BrenĂ© Brown, Rising Strong, p. 184

Corruption and Sin

November 30th, 2016

Corruption is the sin which, rather than being recognized as such and making us humble, is elevated to a system, it becomes a mental habit, a way of living. We no longer feel the need for forgiveness and mercy, but we justify ourselves and our behaviors. Jesus says to his disciples: Even if your brother offends you seven times a day and seven times a day he returns to you to ask for forgiveness, forgive him. The repentant sinner, who sins again and again because of his weakness, will find forgiveness if he acknowledges his need for mercy. The corrupt man is the one who sins but does not repent, who sins and pretends to be Christian, and it is this double life that is scandalous.

— Pope Francis, The Name of God Is Mercy, p. 81

Growth and Development

November 26th, 2016

We get very angry with ourselves. We think we ought to be supermen and superwomen from the start. The Dalai Lama’s serenity didn’t come fully formed. It was through the practice of prayer and meditation that the gentleness, the compassion grew, his being patient and accepting — within reasonable limits. Accepting circumstances as they are, because if there are circumstances that you cannot change, then it’s no use beating your head against a brick wall; that just gives you a headache. This is a vale of growth and development.

— Archbishop Desmond Tutu, quoted by Douglas Abrams in The Book of Joy, p. 92

Joyful Voices

November 25th, 2016

Joy has a voice. People are unhappy because they listen to unhappy voices. If you’re unhappy right now, it’s certain that an unhappy voice is sounding in your mind. To become joyful you must listen to a joyful voice, distinguishing the one note of joy from all the other voices that clamor for attention.

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 37

Do It For You.

November 23rd, 2016

The ultimate issue isn’t whether people deserve your negative thoughts; certainly many people do. The more important point is that they are your thoughts in your head, and you want them to be as beneficial to you as possible. We cannot appreciate and feel devalued at the same time. As long as you appreciate, you will not feel devalued, and you’ll eventually soar above.

— Steven Stosny, Soar Above, p. 113

To Move Mountains

November 18th, 2016

We can pray until that day comes when every prayer will be an immediate incarnation, becoming reality even as we speak it, like creation became reality as God spoke it. For we are his sons and daughters, and he is maturing us to love all that he loves, and to do all that he does. To move mountains, and more.

— John Eldredge, Moving Mountains, p. 230

An Ever-Enlarging Enough

November 16th, 2016

There are good things God must delay giving, until his child has a pocket to hold them — until God gets his child to make that pocket. God must first make him fit to receive and to have. There is no part of our nature that shall not be satisfied — and that not by lessening it, but by enlarging it to embrace an ever-enlarging enough.

— George MacDonald, Unspoken Sermons, Third Series, “The Light,” quoted in Discovering the Character of God, edited by Michael Phillips, p. 156

Forgiveness and Grief

November 14th, 2016

Forgiveness is so difficult because it involves death and grief. I had been looking for patterns in people extending generosity and love, but not in people feeling grief. At that moment it struck me: Given the dark fears we feel when we experience loss, nothing is more generous and loving than the willingness to embrace grief in order to forgive. To be forgiven is to be loved.

The death or ending that forgiveness necessitates comes in many shapes and forms. We may need to bury our expectations or dreams. We may need to relinquish the power that comes with “being right” or put to rest the idea that we can do what’s in our hearts and still retain the support or approval of others.

— BrenĂ© Brown, Rising Strong, p. 150

God’s Mercy

November 5th, 2016

God forgives everyone, he offers new possibilities to everyone, he showers his mercy on everyone who asks for it. We are the ones who do not know how to forgive.

— Pope Francis, The Name of God Is Mercy, p. 80

Always a Librarian

November 4th, 2016

“Thank you,” said Lirael. She fought back the tears in her eyes, because though she no longer felt she was one of the Clayr, she still felt she was a librarian and always would be, no matter what else she had become as well.

— Garth Nix, Goldenhand, p. 170