Renewed Vitality

Faith is attractive. Far from having the joyless, resigned quality that we may fear from it, faith brings to the believer a renewed vitality, a sense of camaraderie and adventure. Seen through the eyes of faith, the world is a safe place. Life is a great unfolding adventure. Strangers are friends that we have not yet met. Optimism prevails. Seen through the eyes of faith, there is nothing to fear in this world. When challenges arise, we will have the inner strength to meet them. Walking through the valley of shadows, we will have the confidence in our God’s benevolent protection. We will not, perhaps, be shielded from all harm, but we will be given the wherewithal to meet any adversity.

— Julia Cameron, Faith and Will, p. 47

Another Look at Endings

The truth is that although endings always involve us in pain, whatever comes into our lives and transforms us is to be celebrated. We don’t curse the person who brings us a bouquet of flowers because a few days later the flowers wilt and we have to throw them away. We celebrate the gift and think it is appropriate to say, “Thank you.” We’re glad to have had a chance to enjoy the bouquet as long as it lasted….

Whenever a relationship is given to us, we need to be grateful and rejoice. Even when a relationship ends, we should celebrate the fact that something has been exchanged that has been of value to both people. When we come to the end of our journey together, we should acknowledge that we are being delivered to the next place in our lives much more safe or whole, more at ease, or more expanded and complete as persons than we were when we entered the relationship. The selves who made the union are in much better condition at its end, even though the suffering and confusion of the ending often make this difficult to see.

If we look only at the relationship, then we must grieve; but if we look at the individuals who loved one another, then we can celebrate. Along with saying that the relationship has ended — something is gone — we should tell ourselves that something wonderful has been accomplished. What we have at the end of a relationship is two transformed human beings, people who have changed so much that they are now ready for the next miraculous stage of their personal development.

— Daphne Rose Kingma, Coming Apart,, p. 54-55


Strength does not come after one climbs the ladder or the mountain, nor after one “makes it” — whatever that “it” represents. Strengthening oneself is essential to the process of striving — especially before and during — as well as after. It is my belief that attention to and devotion to the nature of soul represents the quintessential strength.

— Clarissa Pinkola Estes, Women Who Run With the Wolves, p. 516

Beautiful Individuality

Who will I be if I seek only to do God’s will? Will I become homogenized, somehow diluted? A look at the natural world is reassuring here. Each flower — the crocus, the lotus, the delphinium, to name only a few — has its own unique essence. Roses, daffodils, daisies, peopnies, chrysanthemums — each has its individual beauty. Dogs, too, come in all shapes and sizes: Rottweilers, cocker spaniels, Rhodesian ridgebacks, Pomeranians, German shepherds, Irish setters, Jack Russell terriers, golden Labradors. The natural world, surrendered to God from the very beginning, is filled with diversity. Each creature is its own imprint, a unique manifestation of the glory of God. So, too, we are unique. That uniqueness does not diminish as we move toward God in surrender.

As we move toward God, our natural individuality becomes more vivid.

— Julia Cameron, Faith and Will, p. 44