Missing Someone

Here is the point: wanting someone doesn’t mean you are crazy for having the desire, nor that the time is necessarily right to reconnect with the person. It is simply a sign that you are alive inside and that the boundary has given you breathing room to feel your human need for connection. Pay attention to it, be glad you are alive, and use good judgment and good people to help you decide what to do with it.

— Dr. John Townsend, Beyond Boundaries, p. 49

True Strength

People often think holding on is what makes you strong, but sometimes it’s letting go. I was committed to releasing all that haunted me from this relationship. I wanted to learn from it, yes, but I was no longer willing to be chained to the memories that made me feel inadequate, insecure, and fearful.

— Christi Paul, Love Isn’t Supposed to Hurt, p. 159

Allowing Ourselves to be Blessed

Whatever the form God’s good takes, it is up to us to accept it, and to do so we must be openminded. The Psalms tell us, “Truly I direct my steps by all your precepts,” and we must do precisely that. When God shows an intention to expand us, we must be obedient to that intention. As God moves to expand us, we must allow ourselves to be expanded. As God brings us blessings, we must allow ourselves to be blessed. We must accept the goodness that God intends for us. We must not turn aside the generosity that God bears on our behalf. We are told by Deuteronomy 31:6, “It is the Lord your God who goes with you; he will not fail you or forsake you.”

What could be more clear? Despite our fears, God is no Indian giver. God is with us always and not less so when he is abundant to us. This is a promise, one of many promises that Scripture makes to us. We must be openminded enough to accept the promises Scripture offers us. We must be willing to receive the abundant goodness of God.

— Julia Cameron, Faith and Will, p. 156-157

The Divine Dance

Prayer is strikingly intimate. As soon as you take a specific answer to prayer and try to figure out what caused it, you lose God. We simply cannot see the causal connections between our prayers and what happens. But don’t forget this isn’t just true of prayer. All the best things in life have no visible connections. For example, selfless love, love that gets no credit or payback, is completely irrational to our intellectual elites because there is no visible connection between what love gives and what it gets. . . .

The inability to see the connection between cause and effect is intrinsic to the nature of prayer because it is the direct activity of God. Trying to dissect how prayer works is like using a magnifying glass to try to figure out why a woman is beautiful. If you turn God into an object, he has a way of disappearing. We do the same thing when a spouse or a friend consistently treats us like an object. We pull back. . . .

If you are going to enter this divine dance we call prayer, you have to surrender your desire to be in control, to figure out how prayer works. You’ve got to let God take the lead. You have to trust. Then God will delight you, not only with the gift of himself but also with parking places, pajamas, poured milk, and Pathfinders. No one works like him!

— Paul E. Miller, A Praying Life, p. 128

Talking About Books

Early in my career as an educational consultant I believed that the key to turning children into readers was simply to put the right book in the right hands at the right time and, bingo, children would love the stories they read. I quickly realized that something was missing. I soon recognized children also needed to talk about the books they read. Showing children they have something to say about the books they read helps them engage and connect with a story — children who talk about stories understand the stories better. This is an essential component of children becoming confident readers, and children need confidence to be good readers. Every child needs and deserves the advantage of being a good reader.

— Diane W. Frankenstein, Reading Together, p. 3

Nothing Heroic

If his partner confronts his verbal battering, if she recognizes it for what it is, if she asks for change and he refuses, if his attitude is, as one abuser put it, “I can say anything I want!” the partner may realize that he can say anything he wants, however, she may also realize that there is nothing heroic about staying around to hear it.

— Patricia Evans, The Verbally Abusive Relationship, p. 34