Collected by Anne Murchison
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As you read through the many excellent, sometimes humorous
quotes on this page take time to ponder, smile and sometimes
even laugh out loud.
The Founding Fathers:
"It is impossible to rightly govern without God and the Bible." George
"Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens . . . Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle." George Washington from his farewell address on September 17, 1796
"Man's mind stretched to a new idea, never goes back to its original dimensions." Oliver Wendell Holmes
Our founding fathers were deeply orthodox Christians. They founded the American Bible Society. Fifty-two out of fifty-five members of our first Congress were deeply committed Christians. After they completed the Declaration of Independence, the Continental Congress voted to purchase and import 20,000 copies of the Bible.
Most of us are familiar with Patrick Henry's quote in 1776, "Give me liberty or give me death". This unfortunately is only a portion of the quote. Here it is in full:
"It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often this great nation was founded, not by religionists but by Christians. Not on religion but on the gospel of Jesus Christ. For that reason, give me liberty or give me death."
"I do believe in Almighty God! And I believe also in the Bible." Andrew Johnson
"I believe in the Holy Scriptures, and who so lives by them will be benefited thereby. Men may differ as to the interpretation, which is human, but the Scriptures are man's best guide . . . ". Ulysses S. Grant
"The world's history is a Divine poem . . . to the Christian philosopher there has been a Divine melody running through the song which speaks of hope and halcyon days to come." James Garfield
" . . . it is a great comfort to trust God—even if His providence is unfavorable. Prayer steadies one, when he is walking in slippery places—even if things asked for are not given." Benjamin Harrison
"Americans should select and prefer Christians as their rulers." John Jay, First Supreme Court Justice of the United States
Thomas Jefferson wrote in the front of his well worn Bible, "I am a real Christian, that is to say a disciple of the doctrine of Jesus Christ. I have little doubt that our whole country will soon be rallied to the unity of our Creator."
"Those people who will not be governed by God will be ruled by tyrants." William Penn
On July 4, 1821, President Adams said this. "The highest glory of the American Revolution was this. It connected in one indissoluble bond the principles of civil government and the principles of Christianity."
In 1782, the Congress of the United States voted to pass this resolution. "The Congress of the of the United States recommends and approves the Holy Bible for use in all schools."
"It is the duty of nations as well as of men to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God; to confess their sins and transgressions in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon; and to recognize the sublime truth, announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations are blessed whose God is the LORD." Abraham Lincoln
" . . . A true American patriot must be a religious man . . . He who
neglects his duty to his maker may well be to be deficient and insin-
cere to his duty to the public." Abigail Adams
"We've staked the whole future of American civilization, not upon the power of government. Far from it. We've staked the future of all of our political institutions upon the capacity of each and all of us . . . to
govern ourselves according to the commandments of God. The future
success of America is not in the Constitution, but in the laws of God
upon which this Constitution is founded." James Madison
"If we abide by the principles taught in the Bible, our country will go
on prospering. But if we in our prosperity neglect its instructions and
authority, no man can tell how sudden a catastrophe may overwhelm
us and bury all our glory in profound obscurity." Daniel Webster
"We who introduce into public affairs the principles of a primitive Christianity will change the face of the world." Benjamin Franklin
Of the first 108 universities founded in America, 106 were distinctly Christian, including the first, Harvard University, chartered in 1636. In the original Harvard Student Handbook, rule No.1 was students seeking entrance must know Latin and Greek so they can study the Scriptures: "Let every student be plainly instructed and earnestly pressed to consider well, the main end of his life and studies is, to know God and Jesus Christ, which is eternal life, John 17:3; and therefore to lay Jesus Christ as the only foundation for our children to follow the moral principles of the Ten Commandments."
"A little matter will move a party, but it must be something great that moves a nation." Thomas Paine
"A good government stems from the virtue of its people." Aristotle
"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." Edmund Burke (1729-1797)
Christian Ministers and Thinkers:
"He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose." Jim Elliot
"Preach the gospel to yourself every day." Martin Luther
"Earth's crammed with heaven, And every common bush afire with God. And only he who sees takes off his shoes." Elizabeth Barrett Browning (1806-1861)
"You will never be confident in this life until you are confident in the next one." Gary Brandenburg
"Great soldiers are not made without war. Skillful sailors are first trained on the shore. It appears that if you are to become a great believer, you will be greatly tested. If you are to be a great helper to others, you must pass through their trials. If you are to be instructed in the things of the kingdom, you must learn from experience. The uncut diamond has little brilliance, the unthreshed corn feeds no one, and the untried believer is of little use or beauty. There are great benefits to come from your trials.
"Many people have a comparatively smooth path through life, but their position is not the equal of the tested believer. The one who is much plowed and often harrowed will thank God if the result is a larger harvest to the praise and glory of God by Christ Jesus. If your face is now covered with sorrow, the time will come when you will bless God for that sorrow. The day will come when you will see great gain from your losses, your crosses, your troubles and your afflictions." Charles Spurgeon
"Jesus! It is He who will bestow the power to make the surrender to believe. This is as surely and as exclusively His work as atonement and intercession are His alone. As sure as it was His to win and ascend the throne, it is His to prove His dominion in the individual soul. It is He, the Living One, who is in Divine power to work and maintain the life of communion and victory within us. He is the Mediator and Surety of the Covenant—He, the God-man, who has undertaken not only for all that God requires, but for all that we need too." Andrew Murray, Absolute Surrender
"The Old [covenant] was and was meant to be a 'ministration of death'; until it has completely done its work in us there is no complete discharge from its power. The man who sees that self is incurably evil and must die; who gives self utterly to death as he sinks before God in utter impotence and the surrender to His working; who consents to death with Christ on the cross as his desert, and in faith, accepts it as his only deliverance; he alone is prepared to be led by the Holy Spirit into the full enjoyment of the New Covenant life. He will learn to understand how completely death makes an end to all self-effort, and how, as he lives in Christ to God, everything hencefore is to be the work of God Himself. " Andrew Murray, Absolute Surrender
"The boldest people in the world are those whose lives are tethered to the promises of God." Gary Brandenburg—my pastor
"So long as we stand "under the law," we cannot perceive this hidden unity of all the commandments. It is part of legalism that the will of God must appear to it as a multiplicity of commandments. In actual fact, it is one and indivisible; God wants nothing else except love because He Himself is love." Emil Brunner, The Letter to the Romans
"Take away the blessings and live life to gain satisfaction of even the noblest human desires and eventually you’ll find yourself moving away from God . . . The real battle in the human soul that knows Jesus is not to find a way to feel now what we long to feel in our inmost being, whether it’s love, meaning, or the satisfaction of living an other-centered life in the service of a cause greater than oneself. The real battle is to continue on in faithfulness even when faithfulness brings no immediate experience of joy, even when it brings no prospect of felt joy until heaven. That’s what it means to live by faith. . . . the spiritual battle is between the demand for felt satisfaction and the life of faith." Larry Crabb
"The school of trial best discloses the hidden vileness of the heart, and the vast riches of a Savior's grace!" Henry Law
"God does not cause us to sin, but He leads us on paths that expose our sin." Anne Murchison
"What God has done in the past is both an example and a promise of what He will do in the future." James Allman
"The future is as bright as the promises of God." William Carey
"There is much presumption, pride, hypocrisy, deceit, delusion, formality, superstition and self-righteousness to be purged out of the heart of God's child. But all these things keep him low, mar his pride, crush his self-righteousness, cut the locks of his presumption, stain his self conceit, stop his boasting, preserve him from despising others, make him take the lowest room, teach him to esteem others better than himself, drive him to earnest prayer, fit him as an object of mercy, break to pieces his free will, and lay him low at the feet of the Redeemer, as one to be saved by sovereign grace alone!" J. C. Philpot"All that is not eternal is eternally useless." C. S. Lewis
"People must be charmed into righteousness." Reinhold Niebuhr
"Ignorance of Providence is the greatest of all miseries, and the knowledge of it the highest happiness." John Calvin
"Our expectation of the incredible falls pray to our fear of the inevitable." Brian Tema
"Cowards die many times before their death. The valiant taste of death but once." William Shakespeare
"All tragedies must become an opportunity for self-examination, for deepened humility and brokenness, for a lively clarification of the Gospel, for the expression of radical grace, and for persevering prayer when prayer seems futile." Larry Crabb
"God will use no one greatly until He wounds them deeply." Gary Brandenburg
"All sin, at its root, is failing to give God glory. It is loving anything else more than god." Rick Warren—The Purpose Driven Life
"The Glory of God is a human being fully alive!" St. Irenaeus
"Compassion always breaks down at the point of our prejudice." Joseph Stowell
"In commanding us to glorify him, God is inviting us to enjoy him."
C. S. Lewis
"In God's eyes, the greatest heroes of faith are not those who achieve prosperity, success, and power in this life, but those who treat this life as a temporary assignment and serve faithfully, expecting their promised reward in eternity." Rick Warren—The Purpose Driven Life
"All happenings, great and small, are parables whereby God speaks. The art of life is to get the message." Malcolm Muggeridge.
"I am not a superior person among other people—I am a bondservant of the Lord Jesus." Oswald Chambers
"In essentials, unity; in nonessentials, liberty; and in all things, charity." St. Augustine
"Stubbornness is an unintelligent barrier, refusing enlightenment and blocking its flow." Oswald Chambers.
"By His grace I will die in harness, and lay down my charge only when I lay down my body." Charles Spurgeon
"Salvation is the work of God for man;
it is not the work of man for God.
"Salvation is the bestowal and actual impartation of eternal life;
it not the beauties and artificial imitations of ethical living.
"Salvation is the imputed righteousness of God;
it is not the imperfect righteousness of man.
"Salvation is according to the faithful calling of God;
it is not according to the fitful carefulness of man.
"Salvation is a divine reconciliation;
it is not a human regulation.
"Salvation is the canceling of all sin;
it is not the cessation from some sin.
"Salvation is being delivered from, and dead to, the law;
it is not delighting in, or doing, the law.
"Salvation is divine regeneration;
it is not human reformation.
"Salvation is being acceptable to God;
it is not becoming exceptionally good.
"Salvation is completeness in Christ;
it is not competency in character.
"Salvation is possessing every spiritual blessings;
it is not professing any special benefit.
"Salvation is always and only of God;
it never comes from man."
Lewis Sperry Chafer from his book,
Grace—An Exposition of God's Marvelous Gift (1922)
"Grace is infinite love expressing itself in infinite goodness."
Lewis Sperry Chafer (1871-1952)
"True grace puts an end to all spiritual monopoly." Charles Spurgeon.
"Love is not dependent upon goodness or upon beauty. Love is the grace that creates both. Love is the energy that moves chaos toward harmony, ignorance and falsity toward truth, evil toward goodness. Love does not rest. Love inspires, forgives, unites, generates and flows out through human hearts and the universe to create anew. Trying to control love is as foolish as trying to control God." Charles Spurgeon.
"The ability of a person to atone has always been the most remarkable of human features." Martin Luther
"It's not in the trying but in the trusting,
It's not in the running but in the resting,
It's not in the wrestling but in the praying.
That we find the strength of the Lord."
Where I Belong (Chorus) by Jamie Velasquez
My Mother's Confession of Faith
"Lord, I will surrender my yearning
I will sit still in sackcloth and ashes:
I will await with patience your returning
And contemplate your thirty-nine lashes.
"I will hold my tongue while the fire burns
And waste no words in futile speech
For you are the Word—as the world turns
And never is your grace beyond reach.
"Teach me, O Lord, to follow your path
And to obey no law—only you.
My wisdom is from fear of God's wrath
My soul awaits; it welcomes you.
"Returned from the tomb, pain and death
You say, ‘Feel the nail prints in my hands'.
You restore and strengthen my faith,
Though it be small as a grain of sand.
"Washed to the shore by a tide of tears
And driven again by waves to the sea
Where I drown in the ocean of years
Unless You hasten, Christ—rescue me."
Ruth Ferrell (My Mother)
08/20/15 - 04/28/81
"When you judge others, you do not define them, you define yourself." Earl Nightingale.
Ephesians 1:15-23—"The riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints. Besides the heavenly inheritance prepared for the saints, there is a present inheritance in the saints; for grace is glory begun, and holiness is happiness in the bud. There is a glory in this inheritance, riches of glory, rendering the Christian more excellent and more truly honourable than all about him: and it is desirable to know this experimentally, to be acquainted with the principles, pleasures, and powers, of the spiritual and divine life. It may be understood of the glorious inheritance in or among the saints in heaven, where God does, as it were, lay forth all his riches, to make them happy and glorious, and where all that the saints are in possession of is transcendently glorious, as the knowledge that can be attained of this upon earth is very desirable, and must be exceedingly entertaining and delightful. Let us endeavour then, by reading,
contemplation, and prayer, to know as much of heaven as we can, that we may be desiring and longing to be there." (from Matthew Henry's Commentary).
"Grace is glory begun, and holiness is happiness in the bud."
"If you plead God's value as the source of your hope instead of pleading your value as the source of God's hope, then his unwavering commitment to his own value engages all his heart for your protection and joy." John Piper
"Earth's crammed with heaven, And every common bush afire with God; But only he who sees, takes off his shoes - The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries." Elizabeth Barrett Browning
"A lament is a statement of faith written backwards." Gary Brandenburg
"To see beyond the surface is "to see in the everyday moments of life something of eternal worth . . . There is no time, no place, no event so earthly that God cannot be there, speaking through them. These are moments where earth is crammed with heaven." Ken Gire
"To sense the sacred is to sense what is dear to God." Abraham Heschel
"Magic views of Scripture that offer quick solutions for the deep trials of the soul and the great battles of the heart simply do not take sin or Scripture seriously enough . . .The Word can conquer sin in a moment, but it may require a season, or a lifetime, or generations." Bryan Chapell
Brokenness: "Ps. 51:16 says the Lord does not desire sacrifice or burnt offering. The bulls and goats offered as sacrifices under the law today are our dead works. The sacrifices of God are a broken heart and a contrite spirit (Ps. 51:17). If our legalism prevents us from surrendering to brokenness, we can be sure of one thing. God will keep the pressure on us until we do.
"'And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. And when the chief priests and Pharisees (legalists) had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them'" (Mt. 21:44-45) (Parentheses mine).
"Brokenness is an outward manifestation and expression of the inward condition of repentance and godly sorrow. It is the ability to weep, wail, groan and moan when we are sad or in emotional pain. Brokenness is being poured out, much as the woman who washed the feet of Jesus with her tears of repentance." Anne Murchison
"Loud crying and tears are godly expressions of grief and heartache. They are not symptoms of self-pity and indulgence of the flesh. They are rather God's prescription for letting go of the flesh." Anne Murchison
"A friend once asked me, 'How do you know when you are broken? How do you know when someone else is broken?' My response to her was this. A broken person is a one who takes their struggles to the Lord and humbly grieves them. There is a genuineness, a sincerity, a simplic- ity about them. They are open and unpretentious. It is apparent in their tone of voice and in the softness of their physical appearance. They are easily and openly touched with the feelings others' infirmities. I am less able to describe a broken person, than I am to know when I'm in the presence of one. Jesus was the most broken person who ever walked the earth." Anne Murchison
"And one of the Pharisees (legalists) desired him that he would eat with him. And he went into the Pharisee's house, and sat down to meat. And, behold, a woman in the city, which was a sinner, when she knew that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster box of ointment, and stood at his feet behind him weeping (sobbing and wailing [SC G 2799]), and began to wash his feet with her tears, and did wipe them with the hairs of her head, and kissed his feet, and anointed them with the ointment. Now when the Pharisee which had bidden him saw it, he spake within himself, saying, This man, if he were a prophet, would have know who and what manner of woman this is that toucheth him: for she is a sinner. And Jesus answering said unto him, Simon, I have somewhat to say unto thee. And he saith, Master, say on. There was a certain creditor which had two debtors: the one owed five hundred pence, and the other fifty. And when they had nothing to pay, he frankly forgave them both. Tell me therefore, which of them will love him most? Simon answered and said, I suppose that he, to whom he forgave most. And he said unto him, Thou hast rightly judged. And he turned to the woman, and said unto Simon, Seest thou this woman? I entered thine house, thou gavest me no water for my feet: but she hath washed my feet with tears, and wiped them with the hairs of her head. Thou gavest me no kiss: but this woman since the time I came in hath not ceased to kiss my feet. My head with oil thou didst not anoint: but this woman hath anointed my feet with ointment. Wherefore I say unto thee, Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loveth little. And he said unto her, Thy sins are forgiven" (Luke 7:36-48).
"The best thing about brokenness is loving it." M.L. Schaded
"The devil and all the powers of hell were conquered and disarmed
by the dying Redeemer in fulfillment of the first promise in the Bible (Genesis 3:15). He disannulled the obligation of the law and made a show of Satan and his principalities and powers to angels and men.
"He spoiled them, broke the devil's power, and conquered and disabled him, and made a show of them openly—exposed them to public shame, and made a show of them to angels and men. Never had the devil's kingdom such a mortal blow given to it as was given by the Lord Jesus. He tied them to his chariot-wheels, and rode forth conquering and to conquer—alluding to the custom of a general's triumph, who returned victorious—triumphing over them in it; that is, either in his cross and by his death; or, as some read it, in himself, by his own power; for he trod the wine-press alone, and of the people there was none with him.
"It must be understood of the ceremonial law, the handwriting of ordinances, the ceremonial institutions or the law of commandments contained in ordinances (Eph. 2:15), which was a yoke to the Jews and a partition-wall to the Gentiles. The Lord Jesus took it out of the way, nailed it to his cross; that is, disannulled the obligation of it, that all might see and be satisfied that it was no more binding. When the substance came, the shadows fled away. It is abolished (2 Cor. 3:13), and that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away (Heb. 8:13). The expressions are in allusion to the ancient methods of cancelling a bond, either by crossing the writing or striking it through with a nail." (from Matthew Henry's Commentary).
"A line so often quoted is, 'It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God' (Mt. 19:24). Jesus spoke Aramaic. In that language the word camel also means rope, which makes more sense. Rich here does not refer to accumulated material wealth, but to proud, or not humble, and kingdom is a state of grace, not a final destination. It helps us to understand this difficult passage somewhat better." (From Christ for the Nations Magazine/March 1985).
"Redemption creates all the time." Oswald Chambers.
A Good Listener:
1. listens with spiritual ears open, hearing and understanding
the spirit beneath the words;
2. listens with the heart and mind still and the mouth shut;
3. listens with compassionate spiritual eyes, maintaining involved
4. listens with no personal agenda;
5. listens with a compassionate heart;
6. listens with a committed heart;
7. listens with attentiveness;
8. listens without judgment;
9. listens without fear;
10. listens with faith, knowing that the Spirit of God is at work to
will and do according to His good purpose;
11. counts it a privilege to witness a soul in the process of
transformation, even when it doesn't look like it;
12. waits patiently, quietly and prayerfully through times of silence,
making room for the unfolding of things previously too deep
and too painful to even know or express;
13. offers to explore options;
14. offers to pray when the time of tears and sharing ends;
15. consoles with words of confidence in the faithfulness of God,
which is usually all anyone needs to hear;
16. waits to give advice until asked;
17. offers a hug;
18. recognizes that these are holy moments of eternal consequence;
19. keeps all holy moments completely confidential.
The Value of Listening:
Too many people underestimate the value and power of listening. Listening to me builds trust. Please listen and pray.
When I ask you to listen to me and you start giving advice, you have
not done what is most needed and most helpful. Please listen and pray.
When I ask you to listen to me and you begin to tell me why I shouldn't feel the way I feel, you have trespassed holy ground. You have not walked in my shoes. Please listen and pray.
When I ask you to listen to me and you feel you have to do something to solve my problems, you have interfered in a holy process, strange as this may seem. Please Listen and pray.
All I ask is that you listen. Not talk or do—just listen and pray.
When you do something for me that God and I need to do, you contribute to my fear and feelings of inadequacy. So please listen and pray.
When you accept as a simple fact that I do feel what I feel, no matter how irrational, then I can quit trying to convince you and begin to be healed by the Spirit of God. Please listen. And pray.
Remember, these are holy, epiphanic moments of the soul. Treat them with the reverence they deserve. Please listen and hear me. If you want to talk, wait for your turn—and I'll listen to and pray for you.
"The hill of comfort is the hill of Calvary; the house of consolation is built with the wood of the cross; the temple of heavenly blessing is founded upon the riven rock—riven by the spear which pierced His side. No scene in sacred history ever gladdens the soul like Calvary's tragedy . . . You who have had your seasons of conflict, will confess that it was not at Olivet that you ever found comfort, not on the hill of Sinai, nor on Tabor; but Gethsemane, Gabbath, and Golgotha have been a means of comfort to you. The bitter herbs of Gethsemane have often take away the bitters of your life; the scourge of Gabbatha has often scourged away your cares; and the groans of Calvary yield us comfort rare and rich." Charles Spurgeon.
"Our souls adore th' eternal God Who condescended to be born." Isaac Watts.
"[Catastrophic loss] will either transform us or destroy us, but it will never leave us the same . . . Sorrow never entirely leaves the soul of those who have suffered severe loss. If anything it may keep going deeper. But this depth of sorrow is the sign of a healthy soul, not a sick soul. It does not have to be morbid and fatalistic. It is not something to escape but something to be embraced . . . Sorrow is noble and gracious. It enlarges the soul until the soul is capable of mourning and rejoicing simultaneously, of feeling the world's pain and hoping for the world's healing at the same time. However painful, sorrow is good for the soul." Gerald Sittser's book, A Grace Disguised—How the Soul Grows through Loss.
"The tears of John, which were his liquid prayers, were, so far as he was concerned, the sacred keys by which the folded book was opened." Charles Spurgeon.
"To wash and dress a corpse is a far different thing from making it alive: man can do the one, God alone can do the other." Charles Spurgeon.
"Never was living beauty so enchanting as a dying Saviour." Charles Spurgeon.
"God is at work in the worst of times. Even through the sins of his people he can and he does plot for their glory." From a sermon on the Book of Ruth by John Piper.
"Jesus does not suffer so as to exclude your suffering. He bears a cross, not that you may escape it, but that you may endure it." Charles Spurgeon.
"What is essential is invisible to the eye." From The Little Prince by Antoine de St. Exupery.
"The term Holy Spirit is actually another name for the experience of eternal life working in human beings here and now. The Holy Spirit is the deity of God who continues to apply the power of the atonement by the Cross of Christ to our lives. Thank God for the glorious and majestic truth that His Spirit can work the very nature of Jesus into us, if we will only obey Him." Oswald Chambers.
"The word for grace in the Hebrew means to bend or stoop down, to condescend, to bow low in kindness to an inferior. It also means to lament. This Hebrew word describes the incredible humility of the Almighty God. In His grace and Father's heart He bows low in kindness to us His inferiors, to weep with us when we weep and to rejoice with us when we rejoice. Charles Spurgeon wrote of this lovely Hebrew word that "this is God's making Himself little which is the cause of our being made great. We are so little, that if God should manifest His greatness without condescension, we should be trampled under His feet; but God, who must stoop to view the skies, and bow to see what angels do, turns His eye yet lower, and looks to the lowly and contrite, and makes them great." Charles Spurgeon
"The hill of comfort is the hill of Calvary; the house of consolation is built with the wood of the cross; the temple of heavenly blessing is founded upon the riven rock—riven by the spear which pierced His side. No scene in sacred history ever gladdens the soul like Calvary's tragedy." Charles Spurgeon
"If believin' what they believes makes 'em the way they is, then it bares looking into." from Love's Long Journey by Janette Oke
"The radical failure in so-called religion is that its way is from man to God. Starting with man, it seeks to rise to God; and there is no road that way." J. Arundel Chapman.
"The shadow of the once accursed tree. In that place of thirst, grace hath dug a fountain which ever gusheth with waters pure as crystal, each drop capable of alleviating the woes of mankind. You who have had your seasons of conflict, will confess that it was not at Olivet that you ever found comfort, not on the hill of Sinai, nor on Tabor; but Gethsemane, Gabbatha, and Golgotha have been a means of comfort to you. The bitter herbs of Gethsemane have often taken away the bitters of your life; the scourge of Gabbatha has often scourged away your cares, and the groans of Calvary yields us comfort rare and rich. We never should have known Christ's love in all its heights and depths if He had not died; nor could we guess the Father's deep affection if He had not given His Son to die. The common mercies we enjoy all sing of love, just as the seashell, when we put it to our ears, whispers of the deep sea whence it came; but if we desire to hear the ocean itself, we must not look at everyday blessings, but at the transactions of the crucifixion. He who would know love, let him retire to Calvary and see the Man of sorrows die." Charles Spurgeon.
"What happens when we miss God's perfect plan for our lives? He is a creative God. He will create a brand new perfect plan for our lives right where we are when we turn our hearts back to Him." Joy Dawson.
"The Bible does not teach that there is no good in man. The doctrine of total depravity does not mean that. The Bible teaches that there is no good in man that can satisfy God." Donald Grey Barnhouse.
"Why does He make our hearts so strangely still? Why stands He forth so stately and so tall? Because He has no self to serve, no will that does not seek the welfare of all." Edwin Markham.
"Come in, O strong and deep love of Jesus, like the sea at the flood in spring tides, cover all my powers, drown all my sins, wash out all my cares, lift up my earthbound soul, and float it right up to my Lord's feet, and there let me lie, a poor broken shell, washed up by His love, having no virtue or value; and only venturing to whisper to Him that if He will put His ear to me, He will hear within my heart faint echoes of the vast waves of His own love which have brought me where it is my delight to lie, even at His feet for ever." Charles Spurgeon.
"Christ's might does not lie in making a believer and then leaving him to shift for himself; but He who begins the good work carries it on; He who imparts the first germ of life in the dead soul, prolongs the divine existence, and strengthens it until it bursts asunder every bond of sin, and the soul leaps from earth, perfected in glory." Charles Spurgeon.
"God is fair in eternally disposing of men according to his sovereign pleasure." Jonathan Edwards
"O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin: and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ" (1 Corinth- ians 15:55-57).
"The Christian's life is a matchless riddle. No worldling can comprehend it; even the believer himself cannot understand it. Dead, yet alive! crucified with Christ, and yet at the same time risen with Christ in newness of life! Union with the suffering, bleeding Saviour, and death to the world and sin, are soul-cheering things. O for more enjoyment of them!" Charles Spurgeon
"Intercessory pray is exceedingly prevalent. What wonders it has wrought! The Word of God teems with its marvellous deeds. Believer, thou hast a mighty engine in thy hand, use it well, use it constantly, use it with faith, and thou shalt surely be a benefactor to thy brethren." Charles Spurgeon.
"The nature of sin is not immorality and wrongdoing, but the nature of self-realization which leads us to say, "I am my own god." This nature may exhibit itself in proper morality or in improper morality, but it always has a common basis—my claim to my right to myself ." Oswald Chambers.
The Prayer of An Unknown Confederate Soldier
I asked God for strength, that I might achieve.
I was made weak, that I might learn humbly to obey.
I asked for health, that I might do greater things.
I was given infirmity, that I might do better things.
I asked for riches, that I might be happy.
I was given poverty, that I might be wise.
I asked for power that I might have the praise of men.
I was given weakness, that I might feel the need of God.
I asked for all things, that I might enjoy life.
I was give life, that I might enjoy all things.
I got nothing that I asked for—but got everything I had hoped for.
Almost despite myself, my unspoken prayers were answered.
I am, among all people, most richly blessed.
"Soli Gratia, Sola Fide, Sola Scriptura, Solo Christo, Soli Deo Gloria—because this life is too short to waste on bad theology." Tom Roth
"As a disclaimer to everything I've ever said or everything I ever will say, when it's all said and done we'll only have two things left to say: One is 'Forgive me' and the other is 'Thank you.'" Rich Mullins"A person cannot stumble when he is on his knees." Anonymous~The Bible~
Study it carefully, think of it prayerfully.
Deep in your heart let its pure precepts dwell.
Slight not its history, ponder its mystery
None can e'er prize it too fondly or well.
Accept the glad tidings, the warnings and chidings.
Found in this volume of heavenly lore.
With faith that's unfailing and love all prevailing,
Trust in its promise of life evermore.
With fervent devotion and thankful emotion
Hear the blest welcome, respond to its call.
Life's purest oblation, the hearts adoration
Give to the Saviour who died for us all.
May this message of love from the tribune above,
To all nations and kindred be given.
Joyous anthems of praise.
Hallelujah on earth and in Heaven
"If God is dead, then all things are permissible." Nietsche
"Does the child of God work to earn a just standing before the Holy God or does he work because it is of heartfelt importance that he acts in such a manner as to please a loving Father?" John Reisinger
"Our work is not to save souls, but to disciple them. Salvation and sanctification are the work of God's sovereign grace, and our work as His disciples is to disciple others' lives until they are totally yielded to God." Oswald Chambers
"I was reading Henry Scougal's The Life of God in the Soul of Man. He made this penetrating comment: ‘The worth and excellency of a soul is to be measured by the object of its love.' That struck me as very true. And the thought came that if it is true for man, as Scougal intended to say, surely it is true for God also: ‘The worth and excellency of GOD'S soul is to be measured by the object of his love.'" John Piper
"We cannot understand the depth of the Christian doctrine of sin if we give it only a moral connotation. To break the basic laws of justice and decency is sin indeed. Man's freedom to honor principles is the moral dimension in his nature, and sin often appears as lawlesssness. But sin has its root in something which is more than the will to break the law. The core of sin is our making ourselves the center of life, rather than accepting the holy God as the center." D. D. Williams
"The nature of sin is not immorality and wrongdoing, but the nature of self-realization which leads us to say, "I am my own god." This nature may exhibit itself in proper morality or in improper morality, but it always has a common basis—my claim to my right to myself." Oswald Chambers
"Always measure your life solely by the standards of Jesus. Submit yourself to His yoke, and His alone; and always be careful never to place a yoke on others that is not of Jesus Christ. It takes God a long time to get us to stop thinking that unless everyone sees things exactly as we do, they must be wrong. That is never God's view. There is only one true liberty—the liberty of Jesus at work in our conscience enabling us to do what is right." Oswald Chambers
"It is this self-righteousness of the pious that most breeds atheism, by inspiring all decent, ordinary men with loathing of the enormous lie." Joy Davidman
"Our Lord returned to His original glory, but not simply as the Son of God—He returned to His father as the Son of Man as well. There is now freedom of access for anyone straight to the very throne of God because of the ascension of the Son of Man. As the Son of Man, Jesus Christ deliberately limited His omnipotence, omnipresence, and omniscience. But now they are His in absolute, full power. As the Son of Man, Jesus Christ now has all the power at the throne of God. From His ascension forward He is the King of kings and Lord of lords." Oswald Chambers
"The Holy Spirit makes men penitents long before He makes them divines; and he who believes what he knows, shall soon know more clearly what he believes." Charles Spurgeon
"God often takes a course for accomplishing His purposes directly contrary to what our narrow views would prescribe. He brings a death upon our feelings, wishes, and prospects when He is about to give us the desire of our hearts." John Newton, composer of the world's most famous hymn, "Amazing Grace".
"There will be three effects of nearness to Jesus—humility, happiness, and holiness." Charles Spurgeon
"Oh, how should we extol the power of the Holy Ghost in making us fit to stand before our Father in heaven! Yet let not the hope of perfection hereafter make us content with imperfection now. If it does this, our hope cannot be genuine." Charles Spurgeon
"There is nothing which can so assist you to walk towards heaven with good speed, as wearing the image of Jesus on your heart to rule all its motions." Charles Spurgeon.
"Who made those wounds in the fair hand of Godliness? The professor who used the dagger of hypocrisy. The man who with pretences, enters the fold, being nought but a wolf in sheep's clothing, worries the flock more than the lion outside. There is no weapon half so deadly as a Judas-kiss. Inconsistent professors injure the gospel more than the sneering critic or the infidel." Charles Spurgeon
"Has the Lord loved us so long, and will He yet cast us away? He knew how stiffnecked we should be, He understood that our hearts were evil, and yet He made the choice. Ah! our Saviour is no fickle lover. He doth not feel enchanted for awhile with some gleams of beauty from His church's eye, and then afterwards cast her off because of her unfaithfulness. Nay, He married her in old eternity; and it is written of Jehovah, "He hateth putting away." The eternal choice is a bond upon our gratitude and upon His faithfulness which neither can disown." Charles H. Spurgeon
"Man must be redeemed by a power outside himself. I do not regard the over-determined "optimists" as silly; they seem to me only the victims of a wishful thinking." Bernard Iddings Bell
"Arise, believer, and behold the Lord Jesus yoking the whole of His divine Godhead to the chariot of salvation! How vast His grace, how firm His faithfulness, how unswerving His immutability, how infinite His power, how limitless His knowledge! All these are by the Lord Jesus made the pillars of the temple of salvation; and all, without diminution of their infinity, are covenanted to us as our perpetual inheritance.The fathomless love of the Saviour's heart is every drop of it ours."
The 7 Modern Sins:
Politics without principles,
Pleasures without conscience,
Wealth without work,
Knowledge without character,
Industry without morality,
Science without humanity,
Worship without sacrifice.
Canon Frederic Donaldson
"Is not this sentence the compendium of His biography, "He humbled Himself"? Was He not on earth always stripping off first one robe of honour and then another, until He was fastened to the cross, and there did He not empty out His inmost self, pouring out His life-blood, giving up all for us, till they laid Him penniless in a borrowed grave? How low was our dear Redeemer brought! How then can we be proud?" Charles Spurgeon
"Humility is the very first letter in the alphabet of Christianity." J. C. Ryle (1856)
"Humility is the highest grace that can adorn the Christian character. It is a true saying of an old divine, that "a man has just so much Christianity
as he has humility." J. C. Ryle
"The mind of Christ is forsaking our personal image, agenda and pursuit of power to humble ourselves—by taking up our cross and following Jesus—by giving up our right to ourselves as He gave up His. This is what it is to die to self." Anne Murchison
"Pride cannot live beneath the cross." Charles Spurgeon
"To be the poet of the return to nature is something, but I would rather be the poet of the return to God." Francis Thompson, composer of the renowned poem, "The Hound of Heaven" (1859-1907)
"The disciple who abides in Jesus is the will of God, and what appears to be his free choices are actually God's foreordained decrees. Is this mysterious? Does it appear to contradict sound logic or seem totally absurd? Yes, but what a glorious truth it is to a saint of God." Oswald Chambers
"The counterfeit of obedience is a state of mind in which you create your own opportunities to sacrifice yourself, and your zeal and enthusiasm are mistaken for discernment. It is easier to sacrifice yourself than to fulfill your spiritual destiny, which is stated in Romans 12:12." Oswald Chambers
"Holy Scripture requires searching—much of it can only be learned by careful study. There is milk for babes, but also meat for strong men. The rabbis wisely say that a mountain of matter hangs upon every word, yea, upon every tittle of Scripture. Tertullian exclaims, "I adore the fulness of the Scriptures." No man who merely skims the book of God can profit thereby; we must dig and mine until we obtain the hidden treasure. The door of the word only opens to the key of diligence. The Scriptures claim searching. They are the writings of God, bearing the divine stamp and imprimatur—who shall dare to treat them with levity?
. . . Under the teaching of the Holy Spirit, to the searching eye it glows with splendour of revelation, like a vast temple paved with wrought gold, and roofed with rubies, emeralds, and all manner of gems. There is no merchandise like the merchandise of Scripture truth. Lastly, the Scriptures reveal Jesus: 'They are they which testify of Me.' No more powerful motive can be urged upon Bible readers than this: he who finds Jesus finds life, heaven, all things." Charles Spurgeon.
"Jesus Christ calls service to be what we are to Him, not what we do for Him. Discipleship is based solely on devotion to Jesus Christ, not on following after a particular belief or doctrine." Oswald Chambers.
"The teaching of the Sermon on the Mount is not, 'Do your duty,' but is, in effect, 'Do what is not your duty.'" Oswald Chambers.
"All ecclesiasticism and all doctrinalizing are in order to form character, and the soul of character is love." Nathaniel J. Burton
"Jesus Christ did not come only to teach—He came to make me what He teaches I should be." Oswald Chambers
"In all the setbacks of your life as a believer God is plotting for your joy." John Piper
"The Psalms were written as songs and should be read in the spirit of lyric poetry rather than as doctrinal treatises or sermons." C. S. Lewis
"If you completely give of yourself physically, you become exhausted. But when you give of yourself spiritually, you get more strength." Oswald Chambers
"Jesus chose us, loved us, bought us, cleansed us, robed us, kept us, glorified us: we are here entirely through the Lord Jesus." Charles Spurgeon
"We tend to say that because a person has natural ability, he will make a good Christian. It is not a matter of our equipment, but a matter of our poverty; not of what we bring with us, but of what God puts into us; not a matter of natural virtues, of strength of character, of knowledge, or of experience—all of that is of no avail in this concern. The only thing of value is being taken into the compelling purpose of God and being made His friends." Oswald Chambers
"Say not my soul, 'From whence can God relieve my care? Remember that Omnipotence has servants everywhere. His method is sublime, His heart profoundly kind, God never is before His time, and never is behind.'" Charles Spurgeon
"Oh, for as much love as would go round about the earth, and over heaven—yea, the heaven of heavens, and ten thousand worlds—that I might let all out upon fair, fair, only fair Christ." Samuel Rutherford
"Mercy is undeserved, as indeed all true mercy must be, for deserved mercy is only a misnomer for justice." Charles Spurgeon
"God's fixed purpose is not the destruction, but the instruction of His people. Wisdom hangs up the thermometer at the furnace mouth, and regulates the heat . . . He who made no mistakes in balancing the clouds and meting out the heavens, commits no errors in measuring out the ingredients which compose the medicine of souls. We cannot suffer to much nor be relieved too late . . . He who has fixed the bounds of our habitation, has also fixed the bounds of our tribulation." Charles Spurgeon
"Jesus of Nazareth, without money and arms, conquered more millions than Alexander, Caesar, Mahomet, and Napoleon; without science and learning, He shed more light on things human and divine than all philosophers and schools combined; without the eloquence of schools, He spoke words of life such as never were spoken before or since, and produced effects which lie beyond the reach of any orator or poet; without writing a single line, He has set more pens in motion, and furnished themes for more sermons, orations, discussions, learned volumes, works of art and sweet songs of praise, than the whole army of great men of ancient and modern times. Born in a manger, and crucified as a malefactor, He now controls the destinies of the civilized world, and rules a spiritual empire which embraces one-third of the inhabitants of the globe. There never was in this world a life so unpretending, modest, and lowly in its outward form and condition, and yet producing such extraordinary effects upon all ages, nations, and classes of men. The annals of history produce no other example of such complete and astonishing success in spite of the absence of those material, social, literary, and artistic powers and influences which are indispensable to success for a mere man." Philip Schaff
"Faith lives in a broken heart. 'He cried out with tears, Lord, I believe.' True faith is always in a heart bruised for sin. They, therefore, whose hearts were never touched for sin, have no faith. If a physician should tell us there was a herb that would help us against all infections, but it always grows in a watery place; if we should see a herb like it in colour, leaf, smell, blossom, but growing upon a rock, we should conclude that it was the wrong herb. So saving faith always grows in a heart humbled for sin, in a weeping eye and a tearful conscience." Thomas Watson
"Even the voice of conscience is of little weight if it be not seconded by the voice of God." Charles Spurgeon.
"The true character of the loveliness that speaks for God is always unnoticed by the one possessing that quality." Oswald Chambers
"The worth and excellency of a soul is to be measured by the object of its love." Henry Scougal
"The terrible condition of man's heart will never be recognized by people who assess it only in relation to other men . . . depravity is our condition in relation to God primarily, and only secondarily in relation to man. Unless we start here we will never grasp the totality of our natural depravity." John Piper
"God has taken away in the person of Christ all the power that anything can have to hurt us." Charles Spurgeon
"God's people love to contemplate the graciousness of God's covenant. They see that the law was made void because it was a covenant of works and depended upon merit, but the covenant of grace they perceive to be enduring because grace is the basis, grace the condition, grace the strain, grace the bulwark, grace the foundation, grace the topstone. His covenant is a treasury of wealth, a granary of food, a fountain of life, a storehouse of salvation, a charter of peace, and a haven of joy. Charles Spurgeon.
"Before the day-star knew its place, or planets ran their round, the interests of the saints were made secure in Christ Jesus." Charles Spurgeon
"Blind zeal is soon put to a shameful retreat, while holy resolution, built on fast principles, lifts up its head like a rock in the midst of the waves." William Gurnall
"Jesus bore the wrath of God, and in His death revealed more of God's justice than Sinai on a blaze, but that justice is now vindicated, and henceforth it is the guardian of believers in Jesus. Look, sinner, to the bleeding Saviour, and as thou feelest the attraction of His love, fly to His arms, and thou shalt be saved." Charles Spurgeon
"Common sense is not faith, and faith is not common sense. In fact, they are as different as the natural life and the spiritual . . . Every time my theology becomes clear to my own mind, I encounter something that contradicts it . . . Can you trust Jesus Christ where your common sense cannot trust Him? Can you venture out with courage on the words of Jesus Christ, while the realities of your commonsense life continue to shout, "It's all a lie"?" Oswald Chambers
"Pretended grace from natural goodness, fancied grace from priestly hands, or imaginary grace from outward ceremonies will never serve the true saint of God. The Lord would not be pleased with rivers of such graces." Charles Spurgeon
"Faith must be tested, because it can only become your intimate possession through conflict." Oswald Chambers
"Calvinism is the gospel and nothing else." Charles Spurgeon
"In seasons of severe trial, the Christian has nothing on earth that he can trust to, and is therefore compelled to cast himself on his God alone. When his vessel is on its beam-ends, and no human deliverance can avail, he must simply and entirely trust himself to the providence and care of God. Happy storm that wrecks a man on such a rock as this! O blessed hurricane that drives the soul to God and God alone!" Charle Spurgeon
"A sense of our own folly is a great step towards being wise, when it leads us to rely on the wisdom of the Lord." Charles Spurgeon
"When a man undergoes treatment from a doctor, he does not need to know the way in which the drug works on his body in order to be cured. There is a sense in which Christianity is like that. At the heart of Christianity there is a mystery, but it is not the mystery of intellectual appreciation; it the mystery of redemption." William Barclay
"He who believes in Me . . . out of his heart will flow . . ." (John 7:38).
"Jesus did not say, 'He who believes in Me will realize all the blessings of the fullness of God,' but, in essence, 'He who believes in Me will have everything he receives escape out of him.' Our Lord's teaching was always anti-self-realization. His purpose is not the development of a person—His purpose is to make a person exactly like Himself, and the Son of God is characterized by self-expenditure. If we believe in Jesus, it is not what we gain but what He pours through us that really counts. God's purpose is not simply to make us beautiful, plump grapes, but to make us grapes so that He may squeeze the sweetness out of us. Our spiritual life cannot be measured by success as the world measures it, but only by what God pours through us—and we cannot measure that at all." Oswald Chambers
"God's presence is the sunshine of the heart." Charles Spurgeon
"Blessed love this—a love which binds the heart with chains more soft than silk, and yet more firm than adamant!" Charles Spurgeon
"There are three rules for understanding Scripture: praying, meditating and suffering trials. The 'trials,' Luther said, are supremely valuable: they 'teach you not only to know and understand but also to experience how right, how true, how sweet, how lovely, how mighty, how comforting God's word is: it is wisdom supreme'." John Piper quoting Martin Luther.
"When your mind is on idle, it usually goes to an idol." Anonymous
"The Holy Spirit interprets and explains the nature of Jesus to me to make me one with my Lord, not that I might simply become a trophy for His showcase." Oswald Chambers
"There are seasons of pain and loss and grief and darkness when nothing is worth asking for but God. Everything else seems trivial, even life." John Piper
"Outbursts of uncontrolled anger are the ungodly response to a thwarted will." Anonymous
"Jesus Christ alone will be Lord in our hearts, and none other; for Divine Love can admit of no rival." Johannes Tauler
"That hand which multiplied the loaves, which saved sinking Peter, which upholds afflicted saints, which crowns believers, that same hand will touch every seeking sinner, and in a moment make him clean. The love of Jesus is the source of salvation. He loves, He looks, He touches us, WE LIVE." Charles Spurgeon
"No form of vice—not worldliness, not greed of gold, not drunkenness itself—does more to unChristianize society than evil temper. For embittering life, for breaking up communities, for destroying the most sacred relationships, for devastating homes, for withering up men and women, for taking the bloom off of childhood—in short, for sheer, gratuitous misery-producing power—this influence stands alone."
"Notice the kind of people that God brings around you, and you will be humiliated once you realize that this is actually His way of revealing to you the kind of person you have been to Him." Oswald Chambers
"Faithfulness to the sacred and essential covenant of marriage is important because a society where infidelity is treated as minor will not hold together. Keeping commitments is at the heart of our social fabric. It will rend and unravel where failure to keep covenants (or contracts) is not despised." John Piper
"The 'illusion' of a thing is almost always more tantalizing or more terrifying than the reality of a thing." Anne Murchison
"We presume that we would be ready for battle if confronted with a great crisis, but it is not the crisis that builds something within us—it simply reveals what we are made of already." Oswald Chambers
"The only currency in the Christian life is faith." Anonymous
"Every essential principle of God can be found in both the Old and New Testament." Julie Parton
"The way I was doing the work of God in the world was destroying the work of God in my life." Bill Hybels
"We should follow our Lord as unhesitatingly as sheep follow their shepherd, for He has a right to lead us wherever He pleases. We are not our own, we are bought with a price—let us recognize the rights of the redeeming blood . . . Wherever Jesus may lead us, He goes before us. If we know not where we go, we know with whom we go . . . We should follow Christ in simplicity and faith, because the paths in which He leads us all end in glory and immortality." Charles Spurgeon
"Our Lord never takes measures to make me do what He wants. Sometimes I wish God would master and control me to make me do what He wants, but He will not. And at other times I wish He would leave me alone, and He does not." Oswald Chambers
"Few run too far in neglecting the creature's arm; but very many sin greatly in making too much of it." Charles Spurgeon
"The Sermon on the Mount is not some unattainable goal; it is a statement of what will happen in me when Jesus Christ has changed my nature by putting His own nature in me. Jesus Christ is the only One who can fulfill the Sermon on the Mount." Oswald Chambers
"Live so as to be missed." Robert Murray McCheyne
(Comment: Yes, I miss Charles Spurgeon, John Bunyan, C. S. Lewis and Oh so many other great Christian thinkers who have gone on to be with the Lord. Who do you miss?)
"Where the Holy Ghost implants divine life in the soul, there is a precious deposit which none of the refinements of education can equal." Charles Spurgeon
"Freedom in Christ demands not that we 'have nothing', but that there is nothing we cannot give up." Don Starr
"Human fear is that last vestige of the natural man before he accepts God's grace." Randy Becton
"Blessed be any wind that blows us into the port of our Saviour's love! Happy wounds, which make us seek the beloved Physician." Charles Spurgeon
"Sin is a fundamental relationship—it is not wrong doing, but wrong being—it is deliberate and determined independence from God. The Christian faith bases everything on the extreme, self-confident nature of sin. Other faiths deal with sins—the Bible alone deals with sin." Oswald Chambers
"The root of sin is not morality or immorality but our claim to our right to ourselves." Anne Murchison
"Our faith and our friendships are not shattered by one big act, but by many small neglects." J. Gustav White
"My attitude as a saved and sanctified soul is that of profound, humble holiness (there is no such thing as proud holiness). It is a holiness based on agonizing repentance, a sense of inexpressible shame and degrada- tion, and also on the amazing realization that the love of God demon- strated itself to me while I cared nothing about Him." Oswald Chambers
"That which man doth, unaided by divine strength, God can never own." Charles Spurgeon
"The good Samaritan did not say, "Here is the wine, and here is the oil for you"; he actually poured in the oil and the wine. So Jesus not only gives you the sweet wine of the promise, but holds the golden chalice to your lips, and pours the life-blood into your mouth. The poor, sick, way-worn pilgrim is not merely strengthened to walk, but he is borne on eagles' wings. Glorious gospel! which provides everything for the help- less, which draws nigh to us when we cannot reach after it—brings us grace before we seek for grace!" Charles Spurgeon
"The basis of our Lord's appeal was himself. 'Follow me,' 'come unto me,' and 'ye will not come unto me,' indicate sufficiently that what he offered to men was himself. He seeks to win men's acceptance of the truth that had come in him." John Huxtable
"Once let the truth of God obtain an entrance into the human heart and subdue the whole man unto itself, no power human or infernal can dislodge it. We entertain it not as a guest but as the master of the house—this is a Christian necessity, he is no Christian who doth not thus believe. Those who feel the vital power of the gospel, and know the might of the Holy Ghost as He opens, applies, and seals the Lord's Word, would sooner be torn to pieces than be rent away from the gospel of their salvation." Charles Spurgeon
"We cannot understand the depth of the Christian doctrine of sin if we give to it only a moral connotation. To break the basic laws of justice and decency is sin indeed. Man's freedom to honor principles is the moral dimension in his nature, and sin often appears as lawlessness. But sin has its roots in something which is more than the will to break the law. The core of sin is our making ourselves the center of life, rather than accepting the holy God as the center. Lack of trust, self-love, pride—these are three ways in which Christians have expressed the real meaning of sin. But what sin does is to make the struggle with evil meaningless. When we refuse to hold our freedom in trust and reverence for God's will, there is nothing which can make the risk of life worth the pain of it." D. D. Williams
"That crowd would have followed Christ at that moment because He was giving them what they wanted [bread], and they wished to use Him for their plans and dreams and purposes. That attitude to Christ still lingers in men's minds. We would like Christ's gifts without Christ's Cross; we would like to use Christ instead of allowing Him to use us." William Barclay
"Oh, if thou knewest what peace to thyself thy holy life should bring . . . and what joy to others, me thinketh thou wouldst be more zealous for spiritual profit." Thomas a Kempis
"To be weaned from trusting in our own good works is the hardest weaning in the world. That which strips the creature of all attractiveness, which mars the beauty of pride, and stains the glory of self-sufficiency is from Jesus. But that which exalts man, even though it make you moral, gracious, and outwardly religious, is of the devil." Charles Spurgeon, from his book The Saint and His Savior Self
"Most of us live only within the level of consciousness—consciously serving and consciously devoted to God. This shows immaturity and the fact that we're not yet living the real Christian life. Maturity is produced in the life of a child of God on the unconscious level, until we become so totally surrendered to God that we are not even aware of being used by Him. When we are consciously aware of being used as broken bread and poured-out wine, we have yet another level to reach—a level where all awareness of ourselves and of what God is doing through us is com-pletely eliminated. A saint is never consciously a saint—a saint is consciously dependent on God." Oswald Chambers
"He makes a direct call to us for single-mindedness: a single-minded longing for Him—no lesser aim will do; no desire to be good, no striving to measure up to some standard we have set for ourselves, to correct some failure we have been shown in our way of life. These may be temporarily necessary, but they will turn to dust and ashes, they will end in a grim dryness, unless at the back of them all is what He asks of us—a never-ending search for a real knowledge of Him, for a sense of His reality, a confidence in His companionship, a joy and delight in the very person of God Himself. It is for this that we must learn to long and long, till our prayers for it become not just a form of words, but a stretching out of our whole being to Him." . . . The Notebooks of Florence Allshorn
"Woman was created from the rib of a man. She was not made from his head to be above him, nor out of his feet to be trampled upon; but out of his side to be equal to him, under his arm to be protected, near his heart to be loved." Matthew Henry
"To forgive at all, to forgive fully, to forgive freely, to forgive for ever! Here is a constellation of wonders; and when I think of how great my sins were, how dear were the precious drops which cleansed me from them, and how gracious was the method by which pardon was sealed home to me, I am in a maze of wondering, worshipping affection. I bow before the throne which absolves me, I clasp the cross which delivers me, I serve henceforth all my days the Incarnate God, through whom I am this night a pardoned soul." Charles Spurgeon
"Devotion is the real spiritual sweetness which takes away all bitterness from mortifications, and prevents consolations from disagreeing with the soul; it cures the poor of sadness, and the rich of presumption; it keeps the oppressed from feeling desolate, and the prosperous from insolence; it averts sadness from the lonely, and dissipation from social life; it is as warmth in winter and as refreshing dew in summer; it knows how to abound and how to suffer want, how to profit alike by honour and by contempt; it accepts gladness and sadness with an even mind, and fills men's hearts with a wondrous sweetness." François de Sales
"Providence is the handmaid of grace . . . The Lord Himself must open the heart to receive the things which make for our peace. He alone can put the key into the hole of the door and open it, and get admittance for Himself. He is the heart's master as He is the heart's maker." Charles Spurgeon
"To wash feet may be servile, but to wash His feet is royal work. To unloose the shoe-latchet is poor employ, but to unloose the great Master's shoe is a princely privilege. The shop, the barn, the scullery, and the smithy become temples when men and women do all to the glory of God! Then "divine service" is not a thing of a few hours and a few places, but all life becomes holiness unto the Lord, and every place and thing, as consecrated as the tabernacle and its golden candlestick." Charles Spurgeon
"It is by affliction chiefly that the heart of man is purified, and that the thoughts are fixed on a better state. Prosperity has power to intoxicate the imagination, to fix the mind upon the present scene, to produce confidence and elation, and to make him who enjoys affluence and honors forget the hand by which they were bestowed. It is seldom that we are otherwise than by affliction awakened to a sense of our embecil- ity, or taught to know how little all our acquisitions can conduce to safety or quiet, and how justly we may inscribe to the superintendence of a higher power those blessings which in the wantonness of success we considered as the attainments of our policy and courage." Samuel Johnson
"All that the understanding can comprehend; all that the will may be satisfied with; and all that the imagination may conceive; is most unlike unto God, and most disproportionate to Him." John of the Cross
"If we are to accept the teaching of Jesus at all, then the only test of the reality of a man's religion is his attitude to his fellow men. The only possible proof that a man loves God is the demonstrated fact that he loves his fellow men." William Barclay
"Love does not inquire into the character of the recipient but it asks what he needs. It does not love him because he is such-and-such a person but because he is there. In all this it is quite the opposite of natural love: it "does not seek its own". It does not perform the characteristic natural impulse of love and life. Therefore it is basically independent of the conduct of the other person; it is not conditional but absolute. It wants nothing for itself but only for others. Therefore it is also not vulnerable. It never "reacts" but is always "spontaneous", emerging by its own strength—rather, from the power of God. Love is the real God-likeness of man for which he has been created. In so far as love is in man he really resembles God and shows himself to be the child of God." Emil Brunner
"It is the deliberate verdict of the Lord Jesus that it is better not to have lived than not to love." Henry Drummond
"The process of being made broken bread and poured-out wine means that you have to be the nourishment for other people's souls until they learn to feed on God." Oswald Chambers
"Great hearts can only be made by great troubles." Charles Spurgeon
"Misery should always place itself right in the face of mercy." Charles Spurgeon
"Faith is not belief in spite of evidence, but life in scorn of consequences—a courageous trust in the great purpose of all things, and pressing forward to finish the work which is in sight, whatever the price may be." Kirsopp Lake
"Ye are not as yet wholly dead, or wholly risen, but are daily emerging." John Owen
"The purpose of the incarnation was redemption. God came in the flesh to take sin away. The Cross is the central event in time and eternity, and the answer to all the problems of both." Oswald Chambers
"The purpose of Pentecost was not to teach the disciples something, but to make them the incarnation of what they preached so that they would literally become God's message in the flesh. ". . . you shall be witnesses to Me . . ." (Acts 1:8). Oswald Chambers
"The Cross is God exhibiting His nature." Oswald Chambers
"'It is finished.' It is hard for us to know the intonation with which these words of the dying Christ were spoken. If they came as the sufferer's sigh of relief, they must also have been the worker's glad cry of achievement. Everything had been done that could be, man had been offered a sight of God as He really was. For those of us who believe that, in seeing Jesus, we see God, the Cross is not a coarse framework of blood-stained wood, but the most precious emblem of man's dearest hopes; it is the great pledge which we sorely need, that love is stronger than hate, grace than sin, life than death." H. R. L. Sheppard
"How can an unregenerate soul ever set its affection upon holy things, if its constitution is of unholiness? Even an action that appears good and religious is of no value if the soul is not set upon the amiableness of the divine being. The Good Samaritan could be nothing more than a condemned sinner, if his act is not out of a love for Christ and his desire for holiness. The greatest evangelist or church laborer can be far from true godliness even when their character or behavior is beyond reproach. It is not just the act itself, but the heart's disposition in question. Fear cannot be a driving motive, nor escape from punishment; it must be a yearning after the pure beauty of the Godhead." Kevin Hartley
"Be marked and identified with God's nature, and His blessing will flow through you all the time." Oswald Chambers
"The people who influence us the most are not those who detain us with their continual talk, but those who live their lives like the stars in the sky and "the lilies of the field"—simply and unaffectedly. Those are the lives that mold and shape us." Oswald Chambers
"Faith increases in solidity, assurance, and intensity, the more she is exercised with tribulation, and the more she has been cast down, and lifted up again." Charles Spurgeon
"God gives us his temporal favors as refreshments by the way, and then straightway we kneel down and cry, "These are your gods, O Israel." Charles Spurgeon
"Individualism is the necessary consequence of rational autonomy, just as love is the necessary consequence of faith." Emil Brunner
"If there be one stitch in the celestial garment of our righteousness which we are to insert ourselves, then we are lost; but this is our confidence, the Lord who began will perfect. He has done it all, must do it all, and will do it all. Our confidence must not be in what we have done, nor in what we have resolved to do, but entirely in what the Lord will do." Charles Spurgeon
"There is no possible way a man can reason sufficiently, stir his emotions enough, or set his affection upon God naturally, since he does not possess such ability in himself. Only the Spirit of God can instill such a principle in the soul. Thus regeneration is all of grace . . . Beza, John Calvin's successor in Geneva, taught his parrot to say, "Life, life, the mass is dead . . . " His parrot could say the words, but neither understand nor believe what he said. We might teach a parrot to talk, but in its heart there can be no true disposition towards God . . . The Holy Spirit does not simply revitalize existing faculties. He does not simply redirect the old man's attention. Instead the new nature is just that, new. "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God; for they are foolishness unto him . . . It is not the old nature made new, but a new principle of the soul infused that did not exist before. This new principle of the soul has holiness as the object of its affection. Where the old man loved sin, the new man yearns for holiness. Where the old man loved this world, the new man loves the Lord. Thus writes William Gurnall, 'Here is the work produced—a supernatural principle of a new life. By a principle of life, I mean, an inward disposition and quality, sweetly, powerfully, and constantly inclining it to that which is holy…the HolySpirit puts into the soul what he finds not there.'" Kevin Hartley
"Wickedness arrays itself in fair garments, and imitates the language of holiness." Charles Spurgeon
"There are no crown-wearers in heaven that were not cross-bearers here below." Charles Spurgeon
"Love always involves responsibility, and love always involves sacrifice. And we do not really love Christ unless we are prepared to face His task and to take up His Cross." William Barclay
"A sense of Christ's amazing love to us has a greater tendency to humble us than even a consciousness of our own guilt." Charles Spurgeon
"[In the early church] love was a passion of such a vehement and all-consuming energy, that it was visible in all their actions, spoke in their common talk, and looked out of their eyes even in their commonest glances." Charles Spurgeon
"Those who are most like Christ have the deepest knowledge of their own depravity, and are most humble while they confess their sinfulness." Charles Spurgeon
"The Gospels do not explain the Resurrection—the Resurrection explains the Gospels." John S. Whale
"Never try to make your experience a principle for others, but allow God to be as creative and original with others as He is with you." Oswald Chambers
"We are not meant to be seen as God's perfect, bright-shining examples, but to be seen as the everyday essence of ordinary life exhibiting the miracle of His grace." Oswald Chambers
"I am not what I ought to be. I am not what I want to be. I am not what I hope to be. But still, I am not what I used to be. And by the grace of God, I am what I am." John Newton
"Sorrow is one of the biggest facts in life, and there is no use in saying it should not be. Sin, sorrow, and suffering are, and it is not for us to say that God has made a mistake in allowing them." Oswald Chambers
"The unbelieving mind would not be convinced by any proof, and the worshiping heart needs none." A. W. Tozer
"A Christian must be consistent in his relationship to the life of the Son of God in him, not consistent to strict, unyielding doctrines. People pour themselves into their own doctrines, and God has to blast them out of their preconceived ideas before they can become devoted to Jesus Christ." Oswald Chambers
"Remember that it is not hasty reading, but serious meditation on holy and heavenly truths, that makes them prove sweet and profitable to the soul. It is not the mere touching of the flower by the bee that gathers honey, but her abiding for a time on the flower that draws out the sweet. It is not he that reads most, but he that meditates most, that will prove to be the choicest, sweetest, wisest and strongest Christian." Thomas Brooks
"The nearer a man lives to God the more intensely has he to mourn over his own evil heart." Charles Spurgeon
"Humility is the source of all true greatness." Fenelon
"Authentic, unaffected brokenness and humility are true greatness." Anne Murchison
"It is faith's work to claim and challenge lovingkindness out of all the roughest strokes of God." Samuel Rutherford
"If you read history you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were precisely those who thought most of the next. It is since christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this." C. S. Lewis
"To worship is to quicken the conscience by the holiness of God, to feed the mind with the truth of God, to purge the imagination by the beauty of God, to open the heart to the love of God, to devote the will to the purpose of God." William Temple
"How sad it is to have to live with the consequences of forgiven sin." William Culbertson
"Strength of character may be acquired at work, but beauty of character is learned at home. There the affections are trained. There the gentle life reaches us, the true heaven life. In one word, the family circle is the supreme conductor of Christianity." Phillips Brooks
"Everywhere among Conservatives we find persons who are Bible-
taught but not Spirit-taught. They conceive truth to be something which they can grasp with the mind. If a man holds to the fundamental of the Christian faith he is thought to possess divine truth. But it does not follow. There is no truth apart from the Spirit." A. W. Tozer
"No one can develop freely in this world and find a full life without feeling understood by at least one person." Paul Tournier
"Nine-tenths of our unhappiness is selfishness." G. H. Morrison
"To consider persons and events and situations only in the light of their effect upon myself is to live on the doorstep of hell." Thomas Merton
"The historical books I may compare to the outer courts of the temple; the gospels, the epistles and the psalms bring us into the holy place, or the court of the priests; but the Song of Solomon is the most holy place—the holy of holies, before which the veil still hangs to many an untaught believer." Charles Spurgeon
"Preaching [and teaching] that costs nothing accomplishes nothing." John Henry Jowett
"We say, 'sorrow, disaster, calamity'; God says, 'chastening,' and it sounds sweet to Him though it is a discord to our ears. Don't faint when you are rebuked and don't despise the chastenings of the Lord. 'In your patience possess ye your souls.'" Oswald Chambers
"To be a true minister to men is always to accept new happiness and new distress, both of them forever deepening and entering into closer and more inseparable union with each other the more profound and spiritual the ministry becomes. The man who gives himself to other men can never be a wholly sad man; but no more can he be a man of unclouded gladness." Phillips Brooks
"The deathless Book has survived three great dangers; the negligence of its friends, the false systems built upon it; the warfare of those who have hated it." Isaac Taylor
"To fear God is to stand in awe of Him; to be afraid of God is to run away from Him." Carroll E. Simcox
"Let no man think himself to be holy because he is not tempted, for the holiest and highest in life have the most temptations. How much higher the hill is, so much is the wind there greater; so, how much higher the life is, so much the stronger is the temptation of the enemy." John Wycliffe
"He who cannot forgive breaks the bridge over which he himself must pass." George Herbert
"Money is a wonderful servant, a terrible master, and an abominable god." Warren Wiersbe
"Make all you can, save all you can, give all you can." John Wesley
"Truth is incontrovertible. Panic may resent it; ignorance may deride it; malice may distort it; but there it is." Winston Churchill
"Never give in, never give in, never, never, never, never—in nothing, great or small, large or petty—never give in except to convictions of honor and good sense." Winston Churchill
"Religions are man's search for God; the Gospel is God's search for man. There are many religions, but one Gospel." E. Stanley Jones
"The will to persevere is often the difference between failure and success." David Sarnoff
"God's best gifts are not things but opportunities. What we call adversity, God calls opportunity." Warren Wiersbe
"How rarely we weigh our neighbor in the same balance in which we weigh ourselves." Thomas a Kempis
"Fate says the thing is and must be, so it is decreed. But the true doctrine is—God has appointed this and that, not because it must be, but because it is best that it should be. Fate is blind, but the destiny of Scripture is full of eyes. Fate is stern and adamantine, and has no tears for human sorrow. But the arrangements of providence are kind and good." Charles Spurgeon
"No pain, no palm; no thorns, no throne; no gall, no glory; no cross, no crown." William Penn
"We must form our estimate of men less from their achievements and failures and more from their sufferings." Dietrich Bonhoeffer
"Someone defined responsibility as 'our response to God's ability'." Warren Wiersbe
"The hope of heaven under troubles is like the wind and sails to the soul." Samuel Rutherford
"A good woman is the best thing on earth. Women were last at the cross and first at the open tomb. The church owes a debt to her faithful women which she can never estimate, to say nothing of the debt we owe in our homes to godly wives and mothers." Vance Havner
"We cry too often to be delivered from the punishment instead of the sin that lies behind it. We are anxious to escape from the things that cause us pain rather than from the things that cause God pain." G. Campbell Morgan
"A whole new generation of Christians has come up believing that it is possible to 'accept' Christ without forsaking the world." A. W. Tozer
"Some Christians try to go to heaven alone, in solitude. But believers are not compared to bears or lions or other animals that wander alone. Those who belong to Christ are sheep in this respect, that they love to get together. Sheep go in flocks, and so do God's people." Charles Spurgeon
"No doctrine in the whole Word of God has more excited the hatred of mankind than the truth of the absolute sovereignty of God. The fact that 'the Lord reigneth' is indisputable, and it is this fact that arouses the utmost opposition in the unrenewed human heart." Charles Spurgeon
"No man ought to look for anything in heaven but what one way or another he has some experience in this life." John Owen
"We have never yet been cast where we could not find in our God all that we needed." Charles Spurgeon
"These two principles, their own reputation and that of their sect, constituted the life and soul of Pharisaism of old." John Owen
"Before this round earth ever was fashioned between the palms of the great Creator—before he had painted the rainbow, or hung out the lights of the sun and moon, Christ's delights were with us." Charles Spurgeon
"The great spiritual call of the Beloved Children of God is to pull their brokenness away from the shadow of the curse and put it under the light of the blessing . . . This makes it possible to live our brokenness, not as a confirmation of our fear that we are worthless, but as an opportunity to purify and deepen the blessing that rests upon us. Physical, mental or emotional pain lived under the blessing is experienced in ways radically different from physical, mental or emotional pain lived under the curse . . . Great and heavy burdens become light and easy when they are lived in the light of the blessing . . . And so the great task becomes that of allowing the blessings to touch us in our brokenness." Henri Nouwen
"When Ruth said to Boaz, "spread your skirt over me," the word for skirt is the Hebrew word for wing. This word is used only one other place in Ruth—namely, in verse 2:12, where Boaz says to Ruth, "The Lord recompense you for what you have done, and a full reward be given you by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge." Boaz was God's agent to reward Ruth. He gave her free access to his field, and protection from the young men and water from the well. Ruth had said to Boaz, "Why have I found favor in your eyes?" And Boaz answered, "Because you have come to take refuge under the wings of God.
"So here's what I think is going on in Ruth chapter three. Ruth has told Naomi about these words of Boaz. And the more they ponder them the more they become convinced that they are laden with subtle loving intentions. What Boaz really means is, 'Because you take refuge under the wings of God you are the kind of woman I want to cover with my wings.' It is not easy for an older man to express love to a younger woman. Boaz did it with deeds of kindness and subtle words of admiration. He said he admired her for coming under God's wings. He acted as though she were under his and he waited. And in the course of time Naomi and Ruth hit upon a response just as subtle, just as profound. Ruth will come to him in his sleep, in the grain field where he has taken her under his care, and she will say yes. But she will say it with an action just as subtle and profound as the action and words of Boaz. She puts herself under his wing [skirt], so to speak, and when he wakes everything hangs on one sentence and whether Ruth has interpreted Boaz correctly. Imagine how fast her pulse was racing when Boaz awoke. Then the all important words: "I am Ruth … spread your wing over your maidservant." There had to have been an immense silence for a moment while Boaz let himself believe that this magnificent woman had really understood—had so profoundly and sensitively understood. A middle-aged man in love with a young widow whom he discretely calls "my daughter," uncertain whether her heart might be going after the younger men, communicating the best he can that he wants to be God's wings for her. And a young widow gradually reading between the lines and finally ready to risk an interpretation by coming in the middle of the night to take refuge under the wing of his garment. That's powerful stuff!! Anybody who thinks that a loose woman and a finagling mother-in-law are at work here are on another planet. All is subtle. All is righteous. All is strategic." John Piper
"If we have the idea that we have to put on our "spiritual face" before we can come near to God, then we will never come near to Him. We must come as we are." Oswald Chambers
"Love demands; no, it does not demand—it takes by almighty force, by irresistible energy, that heart captive, upon whom it thus sets itself." Charles Spurgeon
"Whenever new life grows and emerges, darkness is crucial to the process. Whether it's the caterpillar in the chrysalis, the seed in the ground, the child in the womb, or the true self in the soul, there's always a time of waiting in the dark." Sue Monk Kidd
"The essence of spirituality is contained in this phrase: complete and utter abandonment to the will of God." Jean Pierre de Caussade
"Waiting patiently in expectation is the foundation of the spiritual life." Simone Weil
"There is nothing instant or automatic in spiritual development." Alan Jones.
"[Waiting] is part of the process of leaving the petty life, the false life, the old life." Robert Bly
"Transformations come only as we go the long way round, only as we're willing to walk a different, longer, more arduous, more inward, more prayerful route." Sue Monk Kidd
"The natural gradient in us is toward growth." Marion Woodman
"One of the mistakes Christians are fond of making is trying to be more spiritual than God." Archbishop William Temple
"When order crumbles, Mystery rises." John Shea
"You cannot imitate the nature of Jesus—it is either in you or it is not." Oswald Chambers
"Pain won't kill you, but running from it might." Anonymous
"The shell must be cracked apart if what is in it is to come out, for if you want the kernel, you must break the shell." Meister Eckhart
"We are not very good at recognizing illusions, least of all the ones we cherish about ourselves." Thomas Merton
"Duty and love are miles apart." Irene Claremont de Castillejo
''Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely." Lord Acton
"God uses external circumstances to bring about internal purification." Oswald Chambers
"Our priorities must be God first, God second, and God third, until our lives are continually face to face with God and no one else is taken into account whatsoever. Our prayer will then be, 'In all the world there is no one but You, dear God; there is no one but You.'" Oswald Chambers
"Human wisdom delights to trim and arrange the doctrines of the cross into a system more artificial and more congenial with the depraved tastes of fallen nature; instead, however, of improving the gospel carnal wisdom pollutes it, until it becomes another gospel, and not the truth of God at all." Charles Spurgeon
"Two things contribute to our sanctification. Pains and pleasures." Blaise Pascal
"We come into the world longing, for we know not what. We are desire. And desire is good, for it's what takes us to God." Gil Bailie
"All must come from Jesus, or thou art undone for ever." Charles Spurgeon
"The road to life and joy lies through, not around, the heart sickness of hope deferred." John Eldredge
"Faith on its way to maturity moves from "duty to delight". Walter Brueggermann
"Our darling sin must die. Spare it not for its much crying. Strike, though it be as dear as an Isaac. Strike, for God struck at sin when it was laid upon His own Son." Charles Spurgeon
"Pretending seems a much more reliable road to Christian maturity. The only price we pay is a loss of soul, of communion with God, a loss of direction, and a loss of hope." Larry Crabb
"We need the sacred fire to consume the dross. Let us fly to our God, He is a consuming fire; He will not consume our spirit, but our sins." Charles Spurgeon
"The experience the psalmist speaks of—"We will not fear, even though . . ." (Psalm 46:2)—will be ours once we are grounded on the truth of the reality of God's presence, not just a simple awareness of it, but an understanding of the reality of it." Oswald Chambers
"Beauty and affliction are the only two things that can pierce our hearts." Simone Weil
"Life is not a game of striving and indulgence. It is not a long march of duty and obligations. It is not as Henry Ford once said, 'one damn thing after another.' Life is a desperate quest through dangerous country to a destination that is, beyond all our wildest hopes, indescribably good. Only by conceiving of our days in this manner can we find our way safely through." John Eldredge
"When I am born again by the Spirit of God, I know that Jesus Christ did not come only to teach—He came to make me what He teaches I should be. Redemption means that Jesus Christ can place within anyone the same nature that ruled His own life, and all the standards God gives us are based on that nature." Oswald Chambers
"We declare on scriptural authority that the human will is so desperately set on mischief, so depraved, so inclined to everything that is evil, and so disinclined to everything that is good, that without the powerful, supernatural, irresistible influence of the Holy Spirit, no one will ever be constrained toward Christ.
"A man is not saved against his will, but he is made willing by the operation of the Holy Spirit. A mighty grace which he does not wish to resist enters into the man, disarms him, makes a new creature of him, and he is saved.
"If I did not believe that there was might going forth with the word of Jesus which makes men willing, and which turns them from the error of their ways by the mighty, overwhelming, constraining force of divine influence, I should cease to glory in the cross of Christ." Charles Spurgeon
"Jehovah Jesus knows how, by irresistible arguments addressed to the understanding, by mighty reasons appealing to the affections, and by the mysterious influence of His Holy Spirit operating upon all the powers and passions of the soul, so to subdue the whole man, that whereas he was once rebellious, he yields cheerfully to His government, subdued by sovereign love." Charles Spurgeon
"Losses and adversities are frequently the means which the great Shepherd uses to fetch home His wandering sheep; like fierce dogs they worry the wanderers back to the fold." Charles Spurgeon
"The Son of God did not come from above to add an external form of worship to the several ways of life that are in the world, and so to leave people to live as they did before, in such tempers and enjoyments as the fashion and the spirit of the world approve; but as He came down from Heaven altogether Divine and heavenly in His own nature, so it was to call mankind to a Divine and heavenly life; to the highest change of their own nature and temper; to be born again of the Holy Spirit; to walk in the wisdom and light and love of God, and to be like Him to the utmost of their power, to renounce all the most plausible ways of the world, whether of greatness, business, or pleasure; to a mortification of their most agreeable passions; and to live in such wisdom, purity, and holiness as might fit them to be glorious in the enjoyment of God to all eternity." William Law
"You need to fear a white devil twice as much as a black one." Martin Luther
"The white devil of self-righteousness is more dangerous to the Christian than even the black devil of open sin!" Charles Spurgeon
"The only thing of value is being taken into the compelling purpose of God and being made His friend." Oswald Chambers
"The call of God is like the call of the sea—no one hears it except the person who has the nature of the sea in him." Oswald Chambers
"When evangelicals call the Bible "inerrant", part at least of their meaning is this: that, in exegesis and exposition of Scripture and in building up our biblical theology from the fruits of our Bible study, we may not (1) deny, disregard, or arbitrarily relativize, anything that the biblical writers teach, nor (2) discount any of the practical implications for worship and service that their teaching carries, nor (3) cut the knot of any problem of Bible harmony, factual or theological, by allowing ourselves to assume that the inspired writers were not necessarily consistent either with themselves or with each other. It is because the word "inerrant" makes these methodological points about handling the Bible, ruling out in advance the use of mental procedures that can only lead to reduced and distorted versions of Christianity, that it is so valuable and, I think, so much valued by those who embrace it." J. I. Packer
"The worst evils which have ever come upon the world have been brought upon her by an unholy Church." Charles Spurgeon
"Two things contribute to our sanctification. Pains and pleasures." Blaise Pascal
"There are only two things that pierce the human heart: beauty and affliction, moments we wish would last forever and moments we wish had never begun." Simone Weil
"For us creatures of the flesh, sexual intimacy is the closest parallel we have to real worship. Even the world knows this. Why else would sexual ecstasy become the number one rival to communion with God?" John Eldredge from The Journey of Desire
"Our imagination so powerfully magnifies time, by continued reflection upon it, and so diminishes eternity for want of reflection upon it, that we make nothing of eternity and eternity of nothing." Blaise Pascal
"Christians must seek their delights in a higher sphere than the insipid frivolities of the world!" Charles Spurgeon
"And in the perfect time, O perfect God,
When we are in our home, our natal home,
When joy shall carry every sacred load,
And from this life and peace no heart shall roam,
What if thou make us able to make like Thee—
To light with moons, to clothe with greenery,
To hang gold sunsets o'er a rose and purpose sea!"
"Somehow being empty allows us to make others rich." John Eldredge
"It is impossible for our God to look at Christ, our bleeding Surety, and then to be angry with us for sins already punished in Him." Charles Spurgeon
"We dream of heaven and talk of it and set our poets to work to strike their harps to sweeter and higher strains and tones because, when we have formed our own heaven in the innermost and highest places of our imaginations, it falls short of the reality only by infinity." Joseph Parker
"Cheerful holiness is the most forcible of sermons." Charles Spurgeon
"The gates of hell are locked from the inside by the free choice of men and women." Jean-Paul Sartre
"The Biblical usage of the word "understanding" regards the action of the whole moral and spiritual nature, not purely the intellectual process. It involves the grasp of the truth with the whole being, the complete reception of the Word of the kingdom not merely into the intellect but into the central self that is the undivided fountain from which flow the issues of life. Only he who has housed the Word deep in his inmost soul "understands it". Alexander MacLaren
"My biological work convinced me that the One who was declared dead by Nietzsche, and silent by Sartre, actually is very much alive and speaking to us through all things." C. J. Briejèr,
"It is possible to know all about doctrine and still not know Jesus. A person's soul is in grave danger when the knowledge of doctrine surpasses Jesus, avoiding intimate touch with Him . . . The one true sign of discipleship is intimate oneness with Him—a knowledge of Jesus that nothing can shake." Oswald Chambers
"One of the first lessons in the school of wisdom is to know that we are naturally fools. That man is growing wise who is growing conscious of his own deficiency and ignorance." Charles Spurgeon
"As Moses and Elijah stood with Jesus on The Mount of Transfigur- ation, "the Law, with its requirement and its sacrifices, and Prophecy, with its forward-looking gaze, stood there in their representatives and bear witness that their converging lines meet in Jesus. Their presence and their speech were the acknowledgment that this was He whom they had seen from afar; their disappearance proclaims that their work is done. Their presence also teaches us that Jesus is the life of all the living dead. They are witnesses of an immortal life and proofs that His yet unpierced hands held the keys of life and death. Jesus opened the gate that moves backward to no hand but His and summoned them, and they came with no trailing graveclothes entangling their feet and owned Him as the King of Life. Moses and Elijah also speak of the eager onward gaze that the Old Testament believers turned to the coming Deliverer." Alexander MacLaren
"We know when Jesus is at work, because He produces in the commonplace something that is inspiring." Oswald Chambers
"Your sermons last but an hour or two: your life preaches all week." Robert Murray McCheyne
"There is no more blessed way of living than a life of dependence upon a covenant-keeping God. We have no care, for He careth for us; we have no troubles, because we cast our burdens upon the Lord." Charles Spurgeon
"It is a profound example of the absurdity and cruelty possible when religion is purely about outward observances. Nothing more completely hardens the heart and blinds the senses." Alexander MacLaren
"Many of the trials which God sends us are for the purpose of weaning our hearts from the created, and fixing them more closely upon Himself." Charles Spurgeon
"In a dark time, the eye begins to see." Theodore Roethke
"The devil never tempts us with more success than when he tempts us with a sight of our own good actions." Bp. Thomas Wilson
"Do not pray for easy lives; pray to be stronger men. Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers; pray for powers equal to your tasks. Then the doing of your work shall be no miracle, but you yourself shall be a miracle. Every day you shall wonder at yourself, at the richness of life which has come to you by the grace of God." Phillips Brooks
"Oh, plain, and easy, and simple way of salvation! wanting no subtleties of art or science, no borrowed learning, no refinements of reason; but all done by the simple natural motion of every heart that truly longs after God. For no sooner is the finite desire of the creature in motion towards God, but the infinite desire of God is united with it, co-operates with it; and in this united desire of God and the creature is the salvation and life of the soul brought forth." William Law
"Grace is a divine provision for those who are so depraved they cannot change their own nature, so averse from God they will not turn to Him, so blind they can neither see their malady nor the remedy, so spiritually dead. Grace is the sinner's last and only hope; if he is not saved by grace, he will never be saved at all. Grace levels all distinctions, and regards the most zealous religionist on the same plane as the most profligate, the chaste virgin as the foul prostitute. Therefore God is perfectly free to save the chief of sinners and bestow His mercy on the vilest of the vile." Arthur Pink
"True union makes a true Christian: many close with Christ, but it is upon their own terms; they take and own him, but not as God offers him. The terms upon which God in the gospel offers Christ, are, that we shall accept of a broken Christ with a broken heart, and yet a whole Christ with the whole heart. A broken Christ with a broken heart, as a witness of our humility; a whole Christ with a whole heart, as a witness of our sincerity. A broken Christ respects his suffering for sin; a broken heart respects our sense of sin; a whole Christ includes all his offices; a whole heart includes all our faculties. Christ as King, Priest, and Prophet, and as a Mediator. Without any one of these offices, the work of salvation could not have been completed." Matthew Mead
"The more we grow in grace, the more we flourish in glory. Though every vessel of glory shall be full, yet some vessels hold more." Thomas Watson
"Every thing that a man leans upon but God, will be a dart that will certainly pierce his heart through and through. He who leans only upon Christ, lives the highest, choicest, safest, and sweetest life." Thomas Brooks
"We are susceptible to heretical teachings because, in one form or another, they nurture and reflect the way that we would have it be, rather than the way God has provided, which is infinitely better for us. As they lead us into the blind alleys of self-indulgence and escape from life, heresies pander to the most unworthy tendencies of the human heart." C. FitzSimons Allison
"The principle of sacrifice is that we choose to do or to suffer what apart from our love we should not choose to do or to suffer." William Temple
"Frightful this is in a sense, but it is true, and every one who has merely some little knowledge of the human heart can verify it: there is nothing to which a man holds so desperately as to his sin." Søren Kierkegaard
NOTE from Anne: Sin: our claim to our right to ourselves.
"Truth, no matter how powerful, never forces itself upon us." Anonymous
"You must not understand flesh as denoting only unchastity or spirit as denoting only the inner heart. Here St. Paul calls flesh (as does Christ in John 3) everything born of flesh, i.e. the whole human being with body and soul, reason and senses, since everything in him tends toward the flesh. That is why you should know enough to call that person "fleshly" who, without grace, fabricates, teaches and chatters about high spiritual matters." Martin Luther
"We are willing to be God-centered, it seems, as long as God is man-centered. We are willing to boast in the cross as long as the cross is a witness to our worth. Who then is our pride and joy? . . . The goal of God's love in sending Christ is not to make much of us, but to free us from bondage to mirrors, so we can enjoy making much of Him forever." Peter Kreeft
"God sits beside us not only in our sufferings but even in our sins. He does not turn his face from us, however much we turn our face from him. He endures our spiritual scabs and scars, our sneers and screams, our hatreds and haughtiness, just to be with us. Withness—that is the word of love." Peter Kreeft
"We are not dead yet, or wholly risen, but are daily emerging." John Owen
"That God should take alienation away from man by inserting alienation into the very heart of God; that he should conquer evil by allowing it its supreme, unthinkable triumph, deicide, the introduction of death into the life of God, the God of life, the Immortal One; that he should destroy the power of evil by allowing it to destroy him—this is "the foolishness of God [that] is wiser than men, and the weakness of God [that] is stronger than men" (1 Corinthians 1:25). Peter Kreeft
"God did not spare his own Son, because it was the only way he could spare us. The guilt of our transgressions, the punishment of our iniquities, the curse of our sin would have brought us inescapably to the destruction of hell. But God did not spare his own Son; he gave him up to be wounded for our transgressions, and bruised for our iniquties and crucified for our sin." From Future Grace by John Piper
"True faith is not a mere passive impression, or an inoperative notion. It is a holy principle wrought in the soul by the Spirit of God, producing gracious habits, holy affections, filial reverence and obedience. True faith is seated in the heart, influencing and purifying the whole inner man. True faith unites the soul to Christ, as the branch to the vine. It draws virtue from him, whereby the believer is rendered fruitful in every good work. The sweet fruits of the Spirit appear and abound in rich luxuriance on these favored branches, to the glory of God." From On Faith by Thomas Reade.
"Inadequacy is neither a curse to lift nor a disorder to cure. It is a gift to be received, a gift that if properly used can make one powerful and strong and clear and wise." From Shattered Dreams by Larry Crabb
"There is enough in Jesus to employ the soul in rapturous meditation through a vast eternity." David Harsha from Wanderings of a Pilgrim"
"Brokenness and freedom go together, in that order; first suffering, then comfort; first trouble, then joy; first felt unworthiness, then felt love; first death to the self, then resurrection of the soul." Larry Crabb, The Pressure's Off
"Thou hast created my soul, O God, after Thee, and it is restless until it rests in Thee." St. Augustine
"To commit your life, habits, thoughts, goals and priorities—everything to a certain set of beliefs without answering questions is to build your life on a flimsy foundation." Ravi Zacharias from Jesus Among Other Gods
" . . . the God of heaven and earth came looking for you and me, scouring every dungeon and prison and slave market to find us while we were still His enemy, came to rescue us, to pay our ransom by His own sacrifice, to adopt us as sons and daughters and appoint us as heralds—and we've made it boring. Surely no greater feat has ever been wrought on the face of the earth, in the history of the world, than to reduce such magnificence to banality and blandness." Mark Buchanan from Things Unseen—Living in the Light of Forever
"Destiny, not history, is the ultimate ground of our identity . . . the person we become, not the person we have been, is the person we truly are." Mark Buchanan from Things Unseen—Living in the Light of Forever
"All truth is from God; and consequently, if wicked men have said anything that is true and just, we ought not to reject it, for it has come from God." —John Calvin, commentary on Titus 1:12.
Founding Fathers and Other Great Men:
"No other rights are safe where property is not safe." —Daniel Webster.
"It is natural for man to indulge in the illusions of hope. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren till she transforms us into beasts. Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty? Are we disposed to be the number of those who, having eyes, see not, and having ears, hear not, the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it." Patrick Henry.
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitu- tion as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for the government of any other." John Adams
"It is natural for man to indulge in the illusions of hope. We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth, and listen to the song of that siren til she transforms us into beasts. Is this the part of wise men, engaged in a great and arduous struggle for liberty? Are we disposed to be the number of those who, having eyes, see not, and having ears, hear not, the things which so nearly concern their temporal salvation? For my part, whatever anguish of spirit it may cost, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst, and to provide for it." Patrick Henry
"Preserve your government with the utmost attention and solicitude, for it is the remarkable gift of heaven. From year to year be careful in the choice of your representatives, and all the higher powers of government. Fix your eyes upon men of good understanding, and known honesty; men of knowledge, improved by experience; men who fear God, and hate covetousness; who love truth and righteousness, and sincerely wish the public welfare. Beware of such as are cunning rather than wise; who prefer their own interest to every thing; whose judgment is partial, or fickle; and whom you would not willingly trust with your own private interests. When meetings are called for the choice of your rulers, do not carelessly neglect them, or give your votes with indifference, just as any party may persuade, or a sordid treat tempt you; but act with serious deliberation and judgment, as in a most important matter, and let the faithful of the land serve you. Let not men openly irreligious and immoral become your legislators; for how can you expect good laws to be made by men who have no fear of God before their eyes, and who boldly trample on the authority of his commands? And will not the example of their impiety and immorality defeat the efficacy of the best laws which can be made in favour of religion and virtue? If the legislative body are corrupt, you will soon have bad men for counsellors, corrupt judges, unqualified justices, and officers in every department who will dishonor their stations; the consequence of which will be murmurs and complaints from every quarter. Let a superior character point out the man who is to be your head; for much depends on his inspection and care of public affairs and the influence of his judgment, advice and conduct, although his power is circumscribed: in this choice therefore be always on your guard against parties, and the methods taken to make interest for unworthy men, and let distinguished merit always determine your vote." Sam Langdon in New Hampshire, June 5, 1788
"The States can best govern our home concerns and the general government our foreign ones. I wish, therefore . . . NEVER to see all offices transferred to Washington, where, further withdrawn from the eyes of the people, they may more secretly be bought and sold at market." Thomas Jefferson
"To compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves is sinful and tyrannical." Thomas Jefferson
"If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, it expects what never was and never will be." Thomas Jefferson
"Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checkered by failure, than to take up ranks with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, for they live in that grey twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat." Theodore Roosevelt.
"No people who has solely depended upon aid from others ever stood forth in the attitude of freedom." Frederick Douglass
Secular Quotes and thoughts:
The Four Ingredients of Prayer: Thanks, help, oops and wow!
"We live in a violent, often selfish world where sentimental is deemed corny and spiritual means ignorant. We seem to have lost our heart." Kathie Lee Gifford, McCall's, December, 1995.
"With the gift of listening comes the gift of healing, because listening to your brothers or sisters until they have said the last words in their hearts is healing and consoling. Someone has said that it is possible ‘to listen a person's soul into existence.' I like that." Catherine de Hueck Doherty (1896-1985)
Critical thinking: the ability to make careful judgment
or judicious evaluation.
Critical thinking: the art of reasoning.
Critical thinking: the ability to set one's prejudices aside
to assess all sides.
Critical thinking: the ability to make careful and judicious
evaluations independent of group-think.
Judgment: the process of forming an opinion or evaluation
by discerning and comparing.
Wisdom: the ability to discern inner qualities and relationships;
good sense; a wise attitude or course of action.
Discrimination: the quality or power of finely distinguishing.
Thoughtful: characterized by careful reasoned thinking.
Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary.
"Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly. Hold fast to dreams, for when dreams go, life is a barren field frozen with snow." Langston Hughes
"There are only two things that pierce the human heart: beauty and affliction." Simone Weil
The Chinese have two characters for the word "crisis". One means danger; the other, opportunity.
"Myrrh. Known from Biblical times, myrrh is used medicinally for inflammations of the mucous membranes of the mouth and throat. "An oleo-gum resin collected from the stems of bushy shrubs growing in Arabia and Somalia, myrrh has been regarded as one of the treasures of the East for millenia," said Penelope Ody in The Complete Medicinal Herbal. "In folk tradition, myrrh was used for muscular pains and in rheumatic plasters. Called mo yao in China, it has been used since the Tang Dynasty (A.D. 600), primarily to heal wounds."
"You don't have to justify what is right." A Chinese Proverb
GOOD RULES FOR ALL
1. If you open it, close it.
2. If you turn it on, turn it off.
3. If you unlock it, lock it up.
4. If you break it, admit it and offer to replace it.
5. If you can't fix it, get someone who can to fix it.
6. If you borrow it, return it.
7. If you value it, care for it.
8. If you make a mess, clean it up.
9. If you move it, put it back.
10. If it belongs to someone else, ask permission to use it.
11. If you don't know how to operate it, leave it alone.
12. If it is none of your business, don't ask questions about it.
"A great deal of intelligence can be invested in ignorance when the need for illusion is deep." Saul Bellow.
"Of your unspoken words, you are the master; of your spoken words, the servant; of your written words, the slave." A Quaker Proverb
"Watch out when the music of your nation changes. A new kind of music upsets every department of living—both public and private. The beat of the music changes first and everything else falls in line with the beat—fashions, language, customs and morals." The character, Fred Fisher, "quoting" Plato in the movie "O You Beautiful Doll" (1949).
"The only way to control the future is to attack the past." From Star Trek—First Encounter.
"Pride is spiritual cancer; it eats the very possibility of love or contentment, or even common sense." C. S. Lewis
"When you try to make an impression, that is the impression you make." North America Syndicate.
"A fanatic doesn't have questions, only answers." Elie Weisel, Nobel Laureate
"Originality and the feeling of one's own dignity are achieved only through work and struggle." Fyodor Dostoevsky
"If a man does away with his traditional way of living and throws away his good customs, he had better first make certain that he has something of value to replace them." Robert Ruark, Something of Value
"The greatest happiness of life is the conviction that we are loved, loved for ourselves, or rather loved in spite of ourselves." Victor Hugo.
"Before the beginning of great brilliance, there must be chaos. Before a brilliant person begins something great, they must look foolish to the crowd." I Ching.
"Power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely." Lord Acton
"Great growth comes out of great depression." Cliff A. Jones, Ph.D.
"We do not err because truth is difficult to see. It is visible at a glance. We err because this is more comfortable." Alexander Solzhenitsyn.
"Many men go fishing all of their lives without knowing that it is not fish they are after". Henry David Thoreau.
The Definition of Integrity:
Untouched, entire. An unimpaired or unmarred condition. An uncompromising adherence to a code of moral, artistic or other values: utter sincerity, honesty, and candor: avoidance of deception, expediency, artificiality or shallowness of any kind: the quality or state of being complete or undivided: material, spiritual or aesthetic wholeness: organic unity: ENTIRENESS, COMPLETENESS. (Found in the Webster's Dictionary at the Inverness, CA library.) This is the best definition of integrity I have ever found.
Moral or ethical strength character, fiber, honesty, probity,
The condition of being free from defects or flaws strength,
stability, firmness, solidity, wholeness, soundness
The quality of being honest honor, honesty, incorruptibility,
The state of being entirely whole entirety, completeness,
oneness, totality, wholeness
Roget's II Electronic Thesaurus, Microsoft Bookshelf.
Webster's 1828 Dictionary
"In today's world, integrity and character almost sound like old-fashioned words, but there is no safer, happier more fulfilling place to be than here. Character and integrity are words of prosperity no matter how much or how little money we have in the bank." Anne Murchison
"Integrity needs no rules." Albert Camus
"Be very, very careful what you put into that head, because you will never, ever get it out." Cardinal Wolsey (1475-1530).
"Those things that hurt, instruct." Benjamin Franklin.
"Life is difficult. This is a great truth, one of the greatest truths. It is a great truth because once we truly see this truth, we transcend it. Once we truly know that life is difficult—once we truly understand and accept it—then life is no longer difficult. Because once it is accepted, the fact that life is difficult no longer matters." Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled
" . . . lying is an attempt to circumvent legitimate suffering and hence is productive of mental illness." Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled
" . . . when we avoid the legitimate suffering that results from dealing with problems, we also avoid the growth that problems demand from us. It is for this reason that in chronic mental illness we stop growing, we become stuck. And without healing, the human spirit begins to shrivel." Scott Peck, The Road Less Traveled
"Suffering without understanding in this life is a heap worse than suffering when you have at least the grain of an idea what it's all for." Mary Ellen Chase (1887-1973, American author)
"Neurosis is always a substitute for legitimate suffering." Carl Jung
"Prosperity is located within." Wayne Dyer
"I am not a mechanism, an assembly of various sections. And it is not because the mechanism is working wrongly that I am ill. I am ill because of wounds to the soul, to the deep emotional self And the wounds to the soul take a long, long time to heal. Only time can help and patience, and a certain long difficult repentance, A realisation of life's mistake, and the freeing oneself. From the endless repetition of the mistake which mankind at large has chosen to sanctify."
"Healing" by D. H. Lawrence (1993).
"I think of how trees writhe, shake and bend during a storm. Even ice on the trees forces the branches to bend down and bow to the earth, but rarely do they break. As the thaw comes, gradually their resilience makes them spring back. Goethe said, "We must always change, renew, rejuvenate ourselves; otherwise we harden." . . . A forest fire appears to desecrate the land it burns, and hurricanes and volcanoes wreak terrible destruction, but it has been proven that plant life is more productive in the years following these catastrophes . . . We prune our trees and pinch the tops of our plants for better growth. These disturbances cause a rise in productivity. As in nature, it is also the disturbances in our lives that force us to be more resilient and help us grow in understanding. It is the regeneration force at work." Ardath Rodale (Prevention Magazine, April Issue).
"Love is a gift, not an obligation . . . You will never know love unless you surrender to it." (From the movie, Fools Rush In).
"He who refuses to forgive an offender destroys the bridge over which he must also cross."
MOTHERHOOD - IT WILL CHANGE YOUR LIFE
We are sitting at lunch when my daughter casually mentions that she and her husband are thinking of "starting a family". "We're taking a survey," she says, half joking. "Do you think I should have a baby?"
"It will change your life," I say carefully, keeping my tone neutral.
"I know," she says, "no more sleeping in on the weekend, no more spontaneous vacations..."
But that is not what I meant at all. I look at my daughter, trying to decide what to tell her. I want her to know what she will never learn in child birth classes. I want to tell her that the physical wounds of child bearing heal, but that becoming a mother will leave her with an emotional wound so raw that she will be forever vulnerable.
I consider warning her that she will never read a newspaper again without asking "What if that had been MY child?" That every plane crash, every fire will haunt her.
That when she sees pictures of starving children, she will wonder if anything could be worse than watching your child die. I look at her carefully manicured nails and stylish suit and think that no matter how sophisticated she is, becoming a mother will reduce her to the primitive level of a bear protecting her cub.
That an urgent call of "Mom!" will cause her to drop a souffle or her best crystal without a moment's hesitation.
I feel I should warn her that no matter how many years she has invested in her career, she will be professionally derailed by motherhood. She might arrange for child care, but one day she will be going into an important business meeting and she will think about her baby's sweet smell.
She will have to use every ounce of her discipline to keep from running home, just to make sure her baby is all right.
I want my daughter to know that everyday decisions will no longer be routine. That a five year old boy's desire to go to the men's room rather than the women's at McDonalds will become a major dilemma. That right there, in the midst of clattering trays and screaming children, issues of independence and gender identity will be weighed against the prospect that a child molester may be lurking in that restroom.
However decisive she may be at the office, she will second-guess herself constantly as a mother.
Looking at my daughter, I want to assure her that eventually she will shed the pounds of pregnancy, but she will never feel the same about herself. That her life, now so important, will be of less value to her once she has a child. That she would give it up in a moment to save
her offspring, but will also begin to hope for more years—not to accomplish her own dreams, but to watch her child accomplish theirs.
I want her to know that a cesarean scar or shiny stretch marks will become badges of honor. My daughter's relationship with her husband will change, but not in the ways she thinks. I wish she could under- stand how much more you can love a man who is always careful to powder the baby or never hesitates to play with his child. I think she should know that she will fall in love with him again for reasons she would now find very unromantic.
I wish my daughter could sense the bond she'll feel with women throughout history who have tried desperately to stop war and prejudice and drunk driving. I hope she will understand why I can think rationally about most issues, but become temporarily insane when I discuss the threat of nuclear war to my children's future. I want to describe to my daughter the exhilaration of seeing your child learn to ride a bike.
I want to capture for her the belly laugh of a baby who is touching the soft fur of a dog or cat for the first time. I want her to taste the joy that is so real, it actually hurts.
My daughter's quizzical look makes me realize that tears have formed in my eyes. "You'll never regret it," I say finally. Then I reach across the table, squeeze my daughter's hand, and offer a silent prayer for her, and for me, and for all of the mere mortal women who stumble their way into this most wonderful of callings. The blessed gift of being a mother.
"After silence, that which comes closest to expressing the inexpressible is music." Aldous Huxley
"Men fall in love through their eyes, women through their ears."
"Control is concerned with appearance, compulsion or anxiety." Laura Schlesinger.
EIGHT GIFTS THAT DO NOT COST A CENT
1) The Gift of Listening . . . But you must really listen. No
interrupting, no daydreaming, no planning your response.
2) The Gift of Affection . . . Be generous with appropriate hugs,
kisses, pats on the back and handholds. Let these small actions
demonstrate the love you have for family and friends.
3) The Gift of Laughter . . . Share articles and funny stories. Your
gift will say, "I love to laugh with you."
4) The Gift of a Written Note . . . It can be a simple "Thanks for
the help" note or a full sonnet. A brief, handwritten note may be
remembered for a lifetime, and may even change a life.
5) The Gift of a Compliment ... A simple and sincere, "You look
great in red," "You did a super job" or "That was a wonderful
meal" can make someone's day.
6) The Gift of a Favor ... Every day, go out of your way to do
7) The Gift of Solitude ...There are times when we want nothing
better than to be left alone. Be sensitive to those times and give
the gift of solitude to others.
8) The Gift of a Cheerful Disposition ... is to extend a kind word
to someone, really it's not that hard to say, Hello or Thank You.
"Friends are a very rare jewel, indeed. They make you smile and encourage you to succeed. They lend an ear, they share a word of praise, and they always want to open their hearts to us." Unknown
"Life is what happens while we are busy making plans." John Lennon
"I am convinced more and more day by day that fine writing is next to fine doing, the top thing in the world." John Keats from a letter to J.H. Reynolds 1819.
"Circumstances don't make you what you are—they reveal what you are." Unknown
"As psychotic levels of rationalization became more widespread, they came to create and dominate an unhealthy national psychological environment. It's not uncommon to hear serious presentations on TV, including by the president [Clinton], that would indicate severe pathology in any competent clinical evaluation. The psychotic psychological environment in this country is lethal. Talk shows and magazines are filled with proselytizations of pathology. Music and musicians are like escapees from mental wards or rogue motorcycle gangs. In the churches, 30 percent of clergy admit sexual affairs with parishioners and preach sermons accordingly. Fifty years ago [abt 1945] the media environment, the church environment, the entertainment environment, the political environment, and the educational environment furnished a psychological environment that was corrective of mental disorder. For the last 35 years that environment has been exhorting mental disorder and hostility toward the basic underwriting of self-disciplined behavior." Robert L. Kocher, author of "The American Mind in Denial".
"It is not appropriate to compare fundamentalism abroad with people in America who hold deep views about legitimate democratic political dialogue. There is no connection, and I think it's not accurate, nor is it appropriate to draw a connection between the fundamentalism that leads to terrorism abroad, and Americans on either side of political debate who may hold deeply held views in the finest of peaceful American traditions in which we are free to clash over ideas. There is no comparison." Ari Fleischer, Press Secretary for George W. Bush
"War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. The decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks that nothing is worth war is much worse. The person who has nothing for which he is willing to fight is a miserable creature and has no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."
John Stuart Mill—One of the 19th century's greatest thinkers.
"Historians usually adopt the perspective of the winning side."
"Most historians adopt the perspective of the losing side." Anne Murchison