Posts Tagged ‘quotes’

Leading the Way Forward

Quote of the day:

“Leaders with great goals pushed past all the conflict and tension, removed any doubt about self-interest, and dissolved the messiness and noise of the current state.”

—Mark Hannum, Become: The Path to Purposeful Leadership (McGraw-Hill, 2019)

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Quote of the day:

Compassion asks us to go where it hurts, to enter into the places of pain, to share in brokenness, fear, confusion, and anguish. Compassion challenges us to cry out with those in misery, to mourn with those who are lonely, to weep with those in tears. Compassion requires us to be weak with the weak, vulnerable with the vulnerable, and powerless with the powerless. Compassion means full immersion in the condition of being human.

Henri Nouwen

For the past almost three months, I’ve had the privilege of walking alongside a fellow pilgrim, sharing the “brokenness, fear, confusion, and anguish” that marks the human condition. The world says “Laugh, and the world laughs with you; Weep, and you weep alone” (Ella Wheeler Wilcox), but the Word exhorts us to “Rejoice with those who rejoice; weep with those who weep.” (Romans 12:15; CSB).  I confess that many times, I don’t have any words of comfort or wisdom to offer; but I can listen, I can empathize, I can weep—and I can always pray.

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Lately I have been very restless: in my job, at home, in church life, and just my life in general. Though I rest secure in my identity “in Christ”, there is a deep longing for something more. Part of this restlessness is due to our finitude and our desire to transcend the mundane and connect deeper wtih God; and yet, at the same time, I’m still enticed by and entangled with the cares of this world, and engulfed by the ennui of earthly existence.

I have studied many times
The marble which was chiseled for me–
A boat with a furled sail at rest in a harbor.
In truth it pictures not my destination
But my life.
For love was offered me and I shrank from its disillusionment;
Sorrow knocked at my door, but I was afraid;
Ambition called to me, but I dreaded the chances.
Yet all the while I hungered for meaning in my life.
And now I know that we must lift the sail
And catch the winds of destiny
Wherever they drive the boat.
To put meaning in one’s life may end in madness,
But life without meaning is the torture
Of restlessness and vague desire–
It is a boat longing for the sea and yet afraid.

George Gray
Edgar Lee Masters


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In the Moment

“Live the actual moment. Only this actual moment is life.” —THÍCH NHÂ’T HAHN

“All real living is meeting.” ― Martin Buber, I and Thou

In today’s hyperconnected world, most people are in a constant battle throughout their day, which is usually worrying about the future or reflecting on the past and how it could have been different. All this back-and-forth between the past and future can eat up your time and distract you. Not being present is one of the biggest stealers of your time.

Steven Griffith, The Time Cleanse: A Proven System to Eliminate Wasted Time, Realize Your Full Potential, and Reinvest in What Matters Most (McGraw-Hill, 2018)

“Therefore be very careful how you live—not as unwise but as wise, taking advantage of every opportunity [καιρόν], because the days are evil. For this reason do not be foolish, but be wise by understanding what the Lord’s will is.” (Eph. 5:15–17; NET)

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The Green-eyed Monster

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Redesigning Our Liturgy

Thought for today:

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Purpose and Motivation

Quote of the Day

… intentions are the skin of purpose, but motivations are its heart.

We assume we’re doing theology because we can use theological language to express our intentions, but this theological language is only a candy-coated shell that gives the impression that we’ve thought theologically about youth ministry. But real theology moves past the surface and calls us to wrestle with the heart of our motives, as Jacob wrestled the angel (Genesis 32). Theology is only theology when it becomes dangerous, when it threatens to leave us limping by exposing our motives to the action of God. Too much purpose-driven theological reflection in youth ministry has been more fodder for candy shops than dangerous wrestling, because it views theology as a bunch of biblical bullet points used to sweeten our intentions, rather than a call to examine our motives in light of God’s judgment and grace.

Andrew Root, Taking Theology to Youth Ministry (Zondervan, 2012; emphasis mine)

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On Weeping

It is a time of watching, waiting and weeping.

Those who do not weep, do not see.
― Victor Hugo, Les Misérables

Laugh, and the world laughs with you;
Weep, and you weep alone.
― Ella Wheeler Wilcox

“Rejoice with those who rejoice; weep with those who weep.”
― Romans 12:15; CSB

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Many Faces

Thought of the day:

“The Church as the body of Christ has many faces. The Church prays and worships. It speaks words of instruction and healing, cleanses us from our sins, invites us to the table of the Lord, binds us together in a covenant of love, sends us out to minister, anoints us when we are sick or dying, and accompanies us in our search for meaning and our daily need for support. All these faces might not come to us from those we look up to as our leaders. But when we live our lives with a simple trust that Jesus comes to us in our Church, we will see the Church’s ministry in places and in faces where we least expect it.

If we truly love Jesus, Jesus will send us the people to give us what we most need. And they are our spiritual leaders.” (emphasis mine)

– Henri Nouwen

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Glass Bottles of our Ego

Reflection for today:

“When we get out of the glass bottles of our ego,
and when we escape like squirrels turning in the
cages of our personality
and get into the forests again,
we shall shiver with cold and fright
but things will happen to us
so that we don’t know ourselves.

Cool, unlying life will rush in,
and passion will make our bodies taut with power,
we shall stamp our feet with new power
and old things will fall down,
we shall laugh, and institutions will curl up like
burnt paper.”

― D.H. Lawrence

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