Archive for the ‘Trust’ Category

A Story

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2019

We may wish for answers, but God rarely gives us answers. Instead, God gathers us up into soft, familiar arms and says, “Let me tell you a story.”

— Rachel Held Evans, Inspired, p. 221

Photo: South Riding, Virginia, August 28, 2019

Pride

Thursday, June 27th, 2019

Often, our pride stands in the way of our asking for help. In true love there is no place for pride. To love each other means to trust each other. If you don’t tell the person you love of your suffering, it means you don’t love this person enough to trust her. You have to realize that this person is the best person to help you. We need to be able to get help from the person we love.

— Thich Nhat Hanh, How to Love, p. 54

Photo: South Riding, Virginia, February 20, 2017

Pouting

Sunday, December 16th, 2018

If we think it unreasonable to expect ourselves to rejoice in suffering, try looking at the other side: Isn’t it unreasonable not to rejoice? Taking into account God’s great love and faithfulness, and the promise of our eternal reward in heaven, isn’t a joyless attitude like a small child’s tantrum? Feeling powerless, we either shut down or throw a fit as the only means of retaliating against the one who does hold power.

Unhappiness is a form of pouting. It’s a way of saying, “I shouldn’t suffer like this; it’s scandalous; I don’t deserve it and I won’t accept it.” Fine. Your unhappiness will continue until you do accept it. You’d rather be right than happy.

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 112

Photo: San Pedro, California, January 2, 2004

Siding With God

Thursday, November 22nd, 2018

Joy instinctively sides with God in everything, against human circumstances, against transient feelings, against common sense. Common sense does not yield joy; joy is supernatural sense. To attain the supernatural I must adopt God’s point of view. Therefore I resolve to let God be right about everything. Instead of being sorry for myself, I let God be right for allowing my sickness or my difficulties to continue. Instead of worrying, I let God be right for not immediately intervening.

Joy comes from thinking God’s thoughts, doing His will, looking at everything through His eyes by the power of the indwelling Spirit. To embrace entirely God’s point of view, however briefly, is to be joyful. This is true even when God’s point of view involves sorrow over suffering. Joy is not proud, detached, or affected. It mixes well with suffering; it comprehends and effectively ministers to loss. Even in the midst of compassion for affliction, everyone who sides with God remains joyful.

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 109-110

Photo: South Riding, Virginia, November 22, 2018

Wait for It.

Monday, November 5th, 2018

Teilhard de Chardin wrote that we must “trust in the slow work of God.”

Ours is a God who waits. Who are we not to? It takes what it takes for the great turnaround. Wait for it.

— Gregory Boyle, Tattoos on the Heart, p. 113

Photo: South Riding, Virginia, November 4, 2018

Verse for the Day – Soar on Wings Like Eagles

Monday, July 23rd, 2018

I scanned this picture from September 28, 1997 and the Eagle Show, Volerie des Aigles, at Chateau du Kitzheim in Alsace, France – and I couldn’t resist making this:

Enemy of Joy

Tuesday, July 17th, 2018

The greatest enemy of joy is fear. The quickest way to send your joy packing is to become afraid that it will leave or that something will happen to take it away. What a pitiful way to live! Nothing can be deeply enjoyed for fear it will soon be gone. Paradoxically, however, the way to hold on to joy is not to cling to it. When trouble arises and I say, “Oh no, my joy is gone!” — then it will be gone. If instead I relax my grip on joy and release it to adversity, accepting whatever life may bring, then nothing can intimidate me and steal my joy. Joy dwells in an open hand.

What are we so afraid of? Fundamentally our fear is not just of losing battles but of having to fight at all. Overcome the reluctance to fight, and the fear of losing dissipates.

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 75

[Photo: Ruines de l’Oedenbourg, France, September 28, 1997]

Stress Response as a Resource

Monday, July 2nd, 2018

Viewing your stress response as a resource works because it helps you believe “I can do this.” This belief is important for ordinary stress, but it may be even more important during extraordinary stress. Knowing that you are adequate to the challenges in your life can mean the difference between hope or despair, persistence or defeat. Research shows that how you interpret your body’s stress response plays a role in this belief, whether you are worried about an exam, getting over a divorce, or facing your next round of chemo.

Embracing stress is a radical act of self-trust: View yourself as capable and your body as a resource. You don’t have to wait until you no longer have fear, stress, or anxiety to do what matters most. Stress doesn’t have to be a sign to stop and give up on yourself. This kind of mindset shift is a catalyst, not a cure. It doesn’t erase your suffering or make your problems disappear. But if you are willing to rethink your stress response, it may help you recognize your strength and access your courage.

— Kelly McGonigal, The Upside of Stress, p. 133-134

[Photo: Burg Rheinstein, Germany, July 1997]

More Life and Freedom

Thursday, June 7th, 2018

I really hate that Jesus’ Gospel is so much about death. I hate it. I wish that Jesus’ message was, Follow me and all your dreams of cash and prizes will come true; follow me and you’ll have free liposuction and winning lotto tickets for life. But obviously he’s not like that. Jesus says, “Deny yourself, take up your cross and follow me.” He says, “The first shall be last and the last shall be first,” and infuriating things like “if you seek to find your life you will lose it but those who lose their life will find it.” And every single time I die to something — my notions of my own specialness, my plans and desires for something to be a very particular way — every single time I fight it and yet every single time I discover more life and more freedom than if I had gotten what I wanted.

— Nadia Bolz-Weber, Pastrix, p. 186-187

[Photo: Hug Point, Oregon, November 10, 2015]

All Your Needs

Wednesday, March 21st, 2018

Verse for the day:

[Photo: South Riding, Virginia, March 21, 2018]