Archive for April, 2013

Trusting

Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Most of us live with a continual sense of emergency. We have a fear that we are too late and not enough to wrestle a happy destiny from the hands of the gods. What if there is no emergency? What if there is no need to wrestle? What if our only need is receptivity, a gentle openness to guidance? What if, like the Arabian horses grazing outside my window, we are able to simply trust?

When we trust ourselves, we become both more humble and more daring. When we trust ourselves we move more surely. There is no unnecessary strain in our grasp as we reach out to meet life. There is no snatching at people and events, trying to force them to give us what we think we want. We become what we are meant to be. It is that simple. We become what we are, and we do it by being who we are, not who we strive to be.

We are right-sized. We are who and what we are meant to be. All that we need, all that we require, is coming toward us. We need only meet life, not combat it. We need only encounter each day’s questions, not raise a fist at the heavens over the question of tomorrow.

“Just relax” is not advice that most of us respond to easily. We do better with a more active phrase: Focus on the now. In the precise now, no matter how painful our life events, we are always all right. What may be hard is always bearable — not perhaps in our projected future, but there, in that moment, precisely now.

— Julia Cameron, The Sound of Paper, p. 112-113

The Church Began with Community

Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

It began when Jesus called out, “Follow me,” and his friends and neighbors left their old lives and started a new community. A dozen men and a band of women joined Jesus and one another in a journey of faith and sharing and compassion. Christianity did not begin with a confession. It began with an invitation into friendship, into creating a new community, into forming relationships based on love and service.

— Diana Butler Ross, Christianity After Religion, p. 204-205

The Gift of Accountability

Thursday, April 11th, 2013

Being accountable builds self-worth. It helps others to be able to trust us. Letting the people around us become accountable is one of the best gifts we can give them. Our doing for others what needs to be done by them will stunt their growth. Let’s not be guilty of that.

— Karen Casey, Let Go Now, p. 142

Reading Aloud

Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

Beginners are more likely to choose to do an activity when they are successful at it and when they get pleasure from participation in the activity right from the start. This is why reading aloud is such a winning strategy in the making of readers. The novice reader experiences the pleasure of stories in a risk-free environment where it is impossible to fail or appear incompetent.

— Catherine Sheldrick Ross, Lynne (E.F.) McKechnie, and Paulette M. Rothbauer, Reading Matters, p. 45