“I love words. They are used like paint. They can be blended together on a palette to create beautiful moments and thoughts. They encourage, challenge, even transport. All artists have the same tools available – words, paint, etc. – it’s how they are used that makes all the difference. Like all art, different works affect different people in different ways. These affect me.”
On the last day, Jesus will look us over not for medals, diplomas, or honors, but for scars.
Like the flowing river that is yet always present, time that is always going is always coming.
Increasingly over the last maybe forty years, the thought has come to me that the old world in which our people lived by the work of their hands, close to weather and earth, plants and animals, was the true world; and that the new world of cheap energy and ever cheaper money, honored greed, and dreams of liberation from every restraint, is mostly theater. This new world seems a jumble of scenery and props never quite believable, an economy of fantasies and moods, in which it is hard to remember either the timely world of nature or the eternal world of the prophets and poets. And I fear, I believe I know, that the doom of the older world I knew as a boy will finally afflict the new one that replaced it. The world I knew as a boy was flawed, surely, but it was substantial and authentic. The households of my grandparents seemed to breathe forth a sense of the real cost and worth of things. Whatever came, came by somebody’s work.
…in quietness and trust shall be your strength…
All men matter. You matter. I matter. It’s the hardest thing in theology to believe.
But we were used to it. What is hardest to get used to maybe, once you are aware, is the range of things humans are able to get used to.
But knowledge grows with age, and gratitude grows with knowledge.
The chance you had is the life you’ve got. You can make complaints about what people, including you, make of their lives after they have got them, and about what people make of other people’s lives, even about your children being gone, but you mustn’t wish for another life. You mustn’t want to be somebody else. What you must do is this: Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks. I am not all the way capable of so much, but those are the right instructions.
I began to know my story then. Like everybody’s, it was going to be the story of living in the absence of the dead. What is the thread that holds it all together? Grief, I thought for a while. And grief is there sure enough, just about all the way through. From the time I was a girl I have never been far from it. But grief is not a force and has no power to hold. You only bear it. Love is what carries you, for it is always there, even in the dark, or most in the dark, but shining out at times like gold stitches in a piece of embroidery.
God is loving us – you and me – this moment, just as we are and not as we should be.
Heaven is full of people God loves, whom Jesus died for. Hell is full of people God loves, whom Jesus died for. The difference is how we choose to live, which story we choose to live in, which version of reality we trust.
Man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.
Some nights in the midst of this loneliness I swung among the scattered stars at the end of the thin thread of faith alone.
Everything has a crack in it, that’s how the light gets in.
…where every body was living its small, short, surprising, miserable, wonderful, blessed, damaged, only life.
Throughout all the world there goes one long cry from the heart of the artist; Give me leave to do my utmost.
We stumble on.
Living without expectations is hard but, when you can do it, good. Living without hope is harder, and that is bad. You have got to have hope, and you mustn’t shirk it. Love, after all, hopeth all things. But maybe you must learn, and it is hard learning, not to hope out loud, especially for other people. You must not let your hope turn into expectation.
To lend each other a hand when we’re falling, perhaps that’s the only work that matters in the end.
God is able to do far more than we would dare to ask or even dream of – infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts or hopes.
Art is a collaboration between God and the artist, and the less the artist does the better.
God in heaven holds each person by a string. When you sin, you cut the string. Then God ties it up again. Making a knot, bringing you a little closer to Him. Again and again your sins cut the string and with each knot God keeps drawing you closer and closer.
You can’t give yourself over to love for somebody without giving yourself over to suffering.
Man is broken. He lives by mending. The grace of God is glue.
Every child is an artist, the problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.
I’d give anything to feel something, but truth is (sometimes) I don’t feel anything but lonely as a tree in winter.
I’ll wager at the very end a body realizes the Lord has already shown Himself. That things as they are, just as they’ve always seen, was seeing Him. As for me, I could leave the world with today in my eyes.
I paint by faith, not by sight, faith gives me sight.
To love anything good, at any cost, is a bargain.
Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.
Send in the artists, mystics, and clowns. Their fertile imagination pours the new wine of the gospel into fresh wineskins. With fresh language, poetic vision, and striking symbols, they express God’s inexpressible Word in artistic forms that are charged with the power of God, engaging our minds and stirring our hearts as they flame and flare.
Aspire to live quietly, mind your own affairs and work with your hands.