Appointment With God Quotes

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I believe in God but people are liars. It's those people who say they are appointed by God who I don't believe in.
Isaac Bashevis Singer (The Collected Stories of Isaac Bashevis Singer)
Doesn't miss many meals, does he?" Zeus muttered. "Tyson, for your bravery in the war, and for leading the Cyclopes, you are appointed a general I. The armies of Olympus. You shall henceforth lead you breathren into war whenever required by the gods. And you shall have a kind of weapon would you like? A sword? An axe?" "Stick!" Tyson said, showing his broken club. "Very well," Zeus said. "We will grant you a new, er, stick. The best stick that may be found." "Hooray!
Rick Riordan (The Last Olympian (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #5))
All my life,” she said, “I have been told ‘go’ and ‘come.’ I am told how I will live, and I am told how I must die. I must be a man’s servant and a mare for his pleasure, or I must hide myself behind walls and surrender my flesh to a cold, silent god. I would walk into the jaws of hell itself, if it were a path of my own choosing. I would rather die tomorrow in the forest than live a hundred years of the life appointed me. Please. Please let me help you.
Katherine Arden (The Bear and the Nightingale (The Winternight Trilogy, #1))
To love God is to love His will. It is to wait quietly for life to be measured by One who knows us through and through. It is to be content with His timing and His wise appointment.
Elisabeth Elliot
If you know you have to wait anyway, why not make a decision to enjoy your life while you’re waiting? Why not be happy while God is in the process of changing things? After all, there’s nothing we can really do to make it happen any faster. We might as well relax and enjoy our lives, knowing that at the appointed time God is going to bring his plan to pass.
Joel Osteen (Your Best Life Now: 7 Steps to Living at Your Full Potential)
One day I’ll have my appointment with death, and every day I call out to God to see if I can reschedule for a later date.

Jarod Kintz (The Days of Yay are Here! Wake Me Up When They're Over.)
Do you feel disappointed because something you planned didn’t work out If so you can get re-appointed today. In God there are never any dead-ends only detours. Don’t ever give up. Just keep trying until you succeed.
Joyce Meyer
I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation. It is not out of compliment that lovers keep on telling one another how beautiful they are; the delight is incomplete till it is expressed. It is frustrating to have discovered a new author and not to be able to tell anyone how good he is; to come suddenly, at the turn of the road, upon some mountain valley of unexpected grandeur and then to have to keep silent because the people with you care for it no more than for a tin can in the ditch; to hear a good joke and find no one to share it with. . . . The Scotch catechism says that man’s chief end is ‘to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.’ But we shall then know that these are the same thing. Fully to enjoy is to glorify. In commanding us to glorify Him, God is inviting us to enjoy Him.
C.S. Lewis (Reflections on the Psalms)
It’s not so much that nothing means anything but more that it keeps meaning nothing. there’s no release, just gurus and self- appointed gods and hucksters. the more people say, the less there is to say. even the best books are dry sawdust.
Charles Bukowski (The People Look Like Flowers at Last)
Keep the faith. The vision is always for the appointed time. Be patient, prayerful and wait for the fulfillment of your visions.
Lailah Gifty Akita
Lord Th– I mean, Thor,’ said Sam, ‘Won’t you come with us? This is an important battle – the fire lord Surt, Fenris Wolf. Surely that’s worthy of your attention.’ Thor’s right eye twitched. ‘That’s a fine offer. Really. I’d love to, but I have another pressing appointment –’ ‘Game of Thrones,’ Marvin explained.
Rick Riordan (The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, #1))
What if disappointment is really the exact appointment your soul needs to radically encounter God?
Lysa TerKeurst (It's Not Supposed to Be This Way: Finding Unexpected Strength When Disappointments Leave You Shattered)
She said interruptions were simply God's appointments.
Debbie Macomber (Angels at Christmas)
there's no release, just gurus and self- appointed gods and hucksters. the more people say, the less there is to say.
Charles Bukowski (The People Look Like Flowers at Last)
Cynicism places the cynic at the center seat of judgement with the self appointed authority to criticize and condemn.
Jayce O'Neal
With God, there’s always an appointed time for things, and when you put Him first, trust in His timing, and keep the faith, miracles happen!
Germany Kent
Don’t pray when you feel like it. Have an appointment with the King and keep it.1 —CORRIE TEN BOOM
Mike Bickle (Growing in Prayer: A Real-Life Guide to Talking with God)
How can a good God appoint cruel people to positions of authority? The answer is simple: God is the originator of the authority, but He is not the author of the cruelty. Man is responsible for his cruel actions, not God. All authority is of God, but not all authority is godly.
John Bevere (Honor's Reward: How to Attract God's Favor and Blessing)
When you knock, ask to see God . . . not any of the self-appointed intermediaries. —Thoreau
Tosha Silver (Outrageous Openness: Letting the Divine Take the Lead)
God, you don't just barge in on my father, and definitely not my mother." No way. You check with their personal secretaries first. Check out their moods. Then you make an appointment to slip in. There are basic things you learn when your parents run a planet.
Mike Shepherd (Mutineer (Kris Longknife, #1))
Life Is a Gift from God. We hold from God the gift which includes all others. This gift is life -- physical, intellectual, and moral life. But life cannot maintain itself alone. The Creator of life has entrusted us with the responsibility of preserving, developing, and perfecting it. In order that we may accomplish this, He has provided us with a collection of marvelous faculties. And He has put us in the midst of a variety of natural resources. By the application of our faculties to these natural resources we convert them into products, and use them. This process is necessary in order that life may run its appointed course. Life, faculties, production--in other words, individuality, liberty, property -- this is man. And in spite of the cunning of artful political leaders, these three gifts from God precede all human legislation, and are superior to it. Life, liberty, and property do not exist because men have made laws. On the contrary, it was the fact that life, liberty, and property existed beforehand that caused men to make laws in the first place.
Frédéric Bastiat (The Law)
Nothing in the church makes people in the church more angry than grace. It's ironic: we stumble into a party we weren't invited to and find the uninvited standing at the door making sure no other uninviteds get in. Then a strange phenomenon occurs: as soon as we are included in the party because of Jesus' irresponsible love, we decide to make grace "more responsible" by becoming self-appointed Kingdom Monitors, guarding the kingdom of God, keeping the riffraff out (which, as I understand it, are who the kingdom of God is supposed to include).
Mike Yaconelli
By his [God's] help I will arise and address myself diligently to my appointed duty. If happiness in this world is not for me, I will endeavor to promote the welfare of those around me, and my reward shall be hereafter.
Anne Brontë (Agnes Grey (Penguin Classics))
But the most obvious fact about praise -- whether of God or anything -- strangely escaped me. I thought of it in terms of compliment, approval, or the giving of honor. I had never noticed that all enjoyment spontaneously overflows into praise. ... The world rings with praise -- lovers praising their mistresses, readers their favorite poet, walkers praising the countryside, players praising their favorite game. ... I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation.
C.S. Lewis
That the reason why they are not fallen already and do not fall now is only that God's appointed time is not come. For it is said, that when that due time, or appointed time comes, their foot shall slide. Then they shall be left to fall, as they are inclined by their own weight. God will not hold them up in these slippery places any longer, but will let them go; and then, at that very instant, they shall fall into destruction; as he that stands on such slippery declining ground, on the edge of a pit, he cannot stand alone, when he is let go he immediately falls and is lost.
Jonathan Edwards (Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God)
At this second appearing to take the oath of the Presidential office there is less occasion for an extended address than there was at the first. Then a statement somewhat in detail of a course to be pursued seemed fitting and proper. Now, at the expiration of four years, during which public declarations have been constantly called forth on every point and phase of the great contest which still absorbs the attention and engrosses the energies of the nation, little that is new could be presented. The progress of our arms, upon which all else chiefly depends, is as well known to the public as to myself, and it is, I trust, reasonably satisfactory and encouraging to all. With high hope for the future, no prediction in regard to it is ventured. On the occasion corresponding to this four years ago all thoughts were anxiously directed to an impending civil war. All dreaded it, all sought to avert it. While the inaugural address was being delivered from this place, devoted altogether to saving the Union without war, insurgent agents were in the city seeking to destroy it without war--seeking to dissolve the Union and divide effects by negotiation. Both parties deprecated war, but one of them would make war rather than let the nation survive, and the other would accept war rather than let it perish, and the war came. One-eighth of the whole population were colored slaves, not distributed generally over the Union, but localized in the southern part of it. These slaves constituted a peculiar and powerful interest. All knew that this interest was somehow the cause of the war. To strengthen, perpetuate, and extend this interest was the object for which the insurgents would rend the Union even by war, while the Government claimed no right to do more than to restrict the territorial enlargement of it. Neither party expected for the war the magnitude or the duration which it has already attained. Neither anticipated that the cause of the conflict might cease with or even before the conflict itself should cease. Each looked for an easier triumph, and a result less fundamental and astounding. Both read the same Bible and pray to the same God, and each invokes His aid against the other. It may seem strange that any men should dare to ask a just God's assistance in wringing their bread from the sweat of other men's faces, but let us judge not, that we be not judged. The prayers of both could not be answered. That of neither has been answered fully. The Almighty has His own purposes. "Woe unto the world because of offenses; for it must needs be that offenses come, but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh." If we shall suppose that American slavery is one of those offenses which, in the providence of God, must needs come, but which, having continued through His appointed time, He now wills to remove, and that He gives to both North and South this terrible war as the woe due to those by whom the offense came, shall we discern therein any departure from those divine attributes which the believers in a living God always ascribe to Him? Fondly do we hope, fervently do we pray, that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue until all the wealth piled by the bondsman's two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash shall be paid by another drawn with the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said "the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether." With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in, to bind up the nation's wounds, to care for him who shall have borne the battle and for his widow and his orphan, to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and lasting peace among ourselves and with all nations.
Abraham Lincoln (Great Speeches / Abraham Lincoln: with Historical Notes by John Grafton)
Hey, not while I'm at my devotions, no so fast, the fat man said, inside the shithouse you're communing with God, and outside you find that all hell's broken loose.
Herta Müller (The Appointment)
A zealous man in religion is pre-eminently a man of one thing. It is not enough to say that he is earnest, hearty, uncompromising, thorough-going, whole-hearted, fervent in spirit. He sees one thing, he cares for one thing, he lives for one thing, he is swallowed-up in one thing — and that one thing is to please God. Whether he lives — or whether he dies; whether he has health — or whether he has sickness; whether he is rich — or whether he is poor; whether he pleases man — or whether he gives offence; whether he is thought wise — or whether he is thought foolish; whether he gets blame — or whether he gets praise; whether he gets honor, or whether he gets shame — for all this the zealous man cares nothing at all. He burns for one thing — and that one thing is to please God, and to advance God's glory. If he is consumed in the very burning — he is content. He feels that, like a lamp, he is made to burn, and if consumed in burning — he has but done the work for which God appointed him. Such a one will always find a sphere for his zeal. If he cannot preach, and work, and give money — he will cry, and sigh, and pray. Yes, if he is only a pauper, on a perpetual bed of sickness — he will make the wheels of sin around him drive heavily, by continually interceding against it. If he cannot fight in the valley with Joshua — then he will do the prayer-work of Moses, Aaron, and Hur, on the hill. (Exod. 17:9-13.) If he is cut off from working himself — he will give the Lord no rest until help is raised up from another quarter, and the work is done. This is what I mean when I speak of "zeal" in religion.
J.C. Ryle
And though they may be miles apart and indeed have never met, yet they have never been separate, because they are lovers to the beginning and the end, appointed to each other by God’s prosperous love.
A.A. Attanasio (The Dragon and the Unicorn (Arthor, #1))
WHAT YOU DO WITH TODAY MATTERS Have you commanded the morning since your days began, and caused the dawn to know its place? —JOB 38:12 Today has a place in eternity that no other day can take. There are things God has established for you to accomplish this day, and there are things the devil has set up to distract you. Certainly there is some leeway in this, and God gives an incredible amount of grace, but what we do with today matters, not only for ourselves but also for those God has appointed for us to touch. Father, I do not take today for granted. Download fresh vision and purpose into my spirit today so that I might take advantage of every opportunity You bring my way. I have a fresh anointing for the day ahead that is uncontaminated and uncompromised. By this anointing, every yoke is broken off of my life and every burden is lifted. Your yoke is easy, and Your burden is light. I declare that a new cycle of power and victory in my life begins right now. I break free from the cares of yesterday and will not take on any worries about tomorrow, for You have given me grace that is sufficient for each day in and of itself. Your mercies are new every morning, and You clothe me with newness of purpose as I wait upon You. In Jesus’s name, amen.
Cindy Trimm (Commanding Your Morning Daily Devotional: Unleash God's Power in Your Life--Every Day of the Year)
We make loving people a lot more complicated than Jesus did. Every time I try to protect myself by telling somebody about one of my opinions, God whispers to me and asks about my heart. Why are you so afraid? Who are you trying to impress? Am I really so insecure that I surround myself only with people who agree with me? When people are flat wrong, why do I appoint myself the sheriff to straighten them out? Burning down others’ opinions doesn’t make us right. It makes us arsonists.
Bob Goff (Everybody, Always: Becoming Love in a World Full of Setbacks and Difficult People)
It does not answer the aim which God had in this institution, merely for men to have good commentaries and expositions on the Scripture, and other good books of divinity; because, although these may tend, as well as preaching, to give a good doctrinal or speculative understanding of the word of God, yet they have not an equal tendency to impress them on men's hearts and affections. God hath appointed a particular and lively application of his word, in the preaching of it, as a fit means to affect sinners with the importance of religion, their own misery, the necessity of a remedy, and the glory and sufficiency of a remedy provided; to stir up the pure minds of the saints, quicken their affections by often bringing the great things of religion in their remembrance, and setting them in their proper colours, though they know them, and have been fully instructed in them already.
Jonathan Edwards
Your greatest disappointment will often lead you to your greatest appointment.
Chris Burkmenn
Divine life is full of divine appointment and equipping, and you cannot be filled with the power of God without a manifestation. It is my prayer that we would understand that to be filled with the Holy Spirit is to be filled with manifestation, the glory of the Lord being in the midst of us, manifesting His divine power.
Smith Wigglesworth (Smith Wigglesworth Devotional)
That his prayer was nothing else but a sense of the presence of GOD, his soul being at that time insensible to everything but Divine love: and that when the appointed times of prayer were past, he found no difference, because he still continued with GOD, praising and blessing Him with all his might, so that he passed his life in continual joy; yet hoped that GOD would give him somewhat to suffer, when he should grow stronger.
Brother Lawrence (The Practice of the Presence of God)
In communities, at work, but particularly in families, people are put together in something like a three-legged race. God means us to cross the finish line together, and all the other people tied together with us play some part in our progress. They are oftentimes to rouse our stubborn sins to the surface, where we can deal with them and overcome them. Bundled together in families, a giant seven or nine or fifteen legged pack, we seem to make very poor progress indeed and fall to the ground in bickering heaps with some regularity. But God has put us together - has appointed each person in your bundle specifically for you, and you for them. And so, 'little children, let us love one another' with might and main, and keep hopping together toward the finish line.
Frederica Mathewes-Green
If there are forty thousand people in an area that can only support thirty thousand, it's no kindness to bring in food from the outside to maintain them at forty thousand. That just guarantees that the famine will continue." "True. But all the same, it's hard just to sit by and let them starve." "This is precisely how someone speaks who imagines that he is the world's divinely appointed ruler: 'I will not *let* them starve. I will not *let* the drought come. I will not *let* the river flood.' It is the gods who *let* these things, not you.
Daniel Quinn (Ishmael: An Adventure of the Mind and Spirit (Ishmael, #1))
[F]rom my years of understanding ... I happily chose this kind of life in which I yet live [i.e., unmarried], which I assure you for my own part hath hitherto best contented myself and I trust hath been most acceptable to God. From the which if either ambition of high estate offered to me in marriage by the pleasure and appointment of my prince ... or if the eschewing of the danger of my enemies or the avoiding of the peril of death ... could have drawn or dissuaded me from this kind of life, I had not now remained in this estate wherein you see me. But so constant have I always continued in this determination ... yet is it most true that at this day I stand free from any other meaning that either I have had in times past or have at this present.
Queen Elizabeth I (Collected Works)
Am I making myself clear, Orrin? I don't regret how I've lived these past few years. I move where I will. I set no appointments. I guard no borders. What landbound king has the freedom of a ship's captain? The Sea of Brass provides. When I need haste, it gives me winds. When I need gold, it gives me galleons." Thieves prosper, thought Locke. The rich remember. He made his decision, and gripped the rail to avoid shaking. "Only gods-damned fools die for lines drawn on maps," said Zamira. "But nobody can draw lines around my ship. If they try, all I need to do to slip away is set more sail.
Scott Lynch (Red Seas Under Red Skies (Gentleman Bastard, #2))
If you have an earnest desire towards philosophy, prepare yourself from the very first to have the multitude laugh and sneer, and say, "He is returned to us a philosopher all at once; "and "Whence this supercilious look?" Now, for your part, do not have a supercilious look indeed; but keep steadily to those things which appear best to you, as one appointed by God to this particular station. For remember that, if you are persistent, those very persons who at first ridiculed will afterwards admire you. But if you are conquered by them, you will incur a double ridicule.
Epictetus (The Enchiridion of Epictetus)
For my own part, I have never ceased to rejoice that God has appointed me to such an office. People talk of the sacrifice I have made in spending so much of my life in Africa. Is that a sacrifice which brings its own blest reward in healthful activity, the consciousness of doing good, peace of mind, and a bright hope of a glorious destiny hereafter? Away with the word sacrifice. Say rather it is a privilege. Anxiety, sickness, suffering, or danger, now and then, with a foregoing of the common conveniences and charities of this life, may make us pause, and cause the spirit to waver, and the soul to sink; but let this only be for a moment. All these are nothing when compared with the glory which shall be revealed in and for us. I never made a sacrifice.
David Livingstone
now wholly in the lap of whatever god has been appointed the job of protecting small boys.
Stephen King (It)
Feeling sick, sad? Call on the Great Physician. You don't need an appointment; He will see you right away!
Evinda Lepins
Never believe that the so-called random events of life are anything less than God’s appointed order.
Oswald Chambers (My Utmost for His Highest)
- The Azan story - The five daily ritual prayers were regularly performed in congregation, and when the time for each prayer came the people would assemble at the site where the Mosque was being built. Everyone judged of the time by the position of the sun in the sky, or by the first signs of its light on the eastern horizon or by the dimming of its glow in the west after sunset; but opinions could differ, and the Prophet felt the need for a means of summoning the people to prayer when the right time had come. At first he thought of appointing a man to blow a horn like that of the Jews, but later he decided on a wooden clapper, ndqiis, such as the Oriental Christians used at that time, and two pieces of wood were fashioned together for that purpose. But they were never destined to be used; for one night a man of Khazraj, 'Abd Allah ibn Zayd, who had been at the Second 'Aqabah, had a dream whieh the next day he recounted to the Prophet: "There passed by me a man wearing two green garments and he carried in his hand a ndqiis, so I said unto him: "0 slave of God, wilt thou sell me that naqusi" "What wilt thou do with it?" he said. "We will summon the people to prayer with it," I answered. "Shall I not show thee a better way?" he said. "What way is that?" I asked, and he answered: "That thou shouldst say: God is most Great, Alldhu Akbar." The man in green repeated this magnification four times, then each of the following twice: I testify that there is no god but God; I testify that Muhammad is the messenger of God; come unto the prayer; come unto salvation; God is most Great; and then once again there is no god but God. The Prophet said that this was a true vision, and he told him to go to Bilal, who had an excellent voice, and teach him the words exactly as he had heard them in his sleep. The highest house in the neighbourhood of the Mosque belonged to a woman of the clan of Najjar, and Bilal would come there before every dawn and would sit on the roof waiting for the daybreak. When he saw the first faint light in the east he would stretch out his arms and say in supplication: "0 God I praise Thee, and I ask Thy Help for Quraysh, that they may accept Thy religion." Then he would stand and utter the call to prayer.
Martin Lings (Muhammad: His Life Based on the Earliest Sources)
The children we birth do not belong to us. They belong to God. We are simply the vessel for which they arrive on this earth. We are appointed to care and guide them, however we must recognize when the time comes for them to govern their own lives.
Nancy B. Brewer
It is written that God cursed the ground for man's sake. Genesis 3:17. The thorn and the thistle—the difficulties and trials that make his life one of toil and care—were appointed for his good as a part of the training needful in God's plan for his uplifting from the ruin and degradation that sin has wrought.
Ellen Gould White (Steps to Christ)
Praise belongs to God who appointed among those roads His month, the month of Ramadan, the month of fasting, the month of submission, the month of purity, the month of putting to test, the month of standing in prayer, in which the Quran was sent down as guidance to the people, and as clear signs of the Guidance and the Separator.
Ali ibn Husayn Imam Zayn al-'Abidin (a) (The Psalms Of Islam English Version)
The life mission God gave you was only appointed to you. If you are faithful, God will send someone into your life to support it. If your are blessed, he will send someone who shares your passion. If you are chosen, he will unlock every door that stands in your way.
Shannon L. Alder
There is only one classroom in which to learn: 1. The work of God. 2. The will of God. 3. The trustworthiness of God. 4. The presence of God. The classroom is where I am now. This is the place appointed by God for my instruction and sanctification - even here: 1. where it seems God is doing nothing (He is, in fact, at work in unseen ways); 2. where His will seems obscure or frightening (He will surely give me peace at last); 3. where He isn't doing what I want Him to (He is doing something better - preparing bread for me when what I asked was in actual fact a stone; or perhaps, He is doing the very thing I prayed for, but in a way incomprehensible to me); 4. where He is most absent (yes, even there His promise holds: I will never leave you or forsake you. My faith must size that written word regardless of the enemy's taunt, "You've been abandoned.").
Elisabeth Elliot
Jesus says that every Christian has his own cross waiting for him, a cross destined and appointed by God. Each must endure his allotted share of suffering and rejection. But each has a different share: some God deems worthy of the highest form of suffering, and gives them the grace of martyrdom, while others he does not allow to be tempted above that which they are able to bear. But it is the one and the same cross in every case.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (The Cost of Discipleship)
At the end of that class Demian said to me thoughtfully: "There’s something I don’t like about this story, Sinclair. Why don’t you read it once more and give it the acid test? There’s something about it that doesn’t taste right. I mean the business with the two thieves. The three crosses standing next to each other on the hill are almost impressive, to be sure. But now comes this sentimental little treatise about the good thief. At first he was a thorough scoundrel, had committed all those awful things and God knows what else, and now he dissolves in tears and celebrates such a tearful feast of self-improvement and remorse! What’s the sense of repenting if you’re two steps from the grave? I ask you. Once again, it’s nothing but a priest’s fairy tale, saccharine and dishonest, touched up with sentimentality and given a high edifying background. If you had to pick a friend from between the two thieves or decide which one you’d rather trust, you most certainly wouldn’t choose the sniveling convert. No, the other fellow, he’s a man of character. He doesn’t give a hoot for ‘conversion’, which to a man in his position can’t be anything but a pretty speech. He follows his destiny to it’s appointed end and does not turn coward and forswear the devil, who has aided and abetted him until then. He has character, and people with character tend to receive the short end of the stick in biblical stories. Perhaps he’s even a descendant of Cain. Don’t you agree?" I was dismayed. Until now I had felt completely at home in the story of the Crucifixion. Now I saw for the first time with how little individuality, with how little power of imagination I had listened to it and read it. Still, Demian’s new concept seemed vaguely sinister and threatened to topple beliefs on whose continued existence I felt I simply had to insist. No, one could not make light of everything, especially not of the most Sacred matters. As usual he noticed my resistance even before I had said anything. "I know," he said in a resigned tone of voice, "it’s the same old story: don’t take these stories seriously! But I have to tell you something: this is one of the very places that reveals the poverty of this religion most distinctly. The point is that this God of both Old and New Testaments is certainly an extraordinary figure but not what he purports to represent. He is all that is good, noble, fatherly, beautiful, elevated, sentimental—true! But the world consists of something else besides. And what is left over is ascribed to the devil, this entire slice of world, this entire half is hushed up. In exactly the same way they praise God as the father of all life but simply refuse to say a word about our sexual life on which it’s all based, describing it whenever possible as sinful, the work of the devil. I have no objection to worshiping this God Jehovah, far from it. But I mean we ought to consider everything sacred, the entire world, not merely this artificially separated half! Thus alongside the divine service we should also have a service for the devil. I feel that would be right. Otherwise you must create for yourself a God that contains the devil too and in front of which you needn’t close your eyes when the most natural things in the world take place.
Hermann Hesse (Demian. Die Geschichte von Emil Sinclairs Jugend)
The Prayer Appointed for the Week O God, from whom all good proceeds: Grant that by your inspiration I may think those things that are right, and by your merciful guiding may do them; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God for ever and ever. Amen.†
Phyllis Tickle (The Divine Hours (Volume One): Prayers for Summertime: A Manual for Prayer)
At Bealltainn, or May Day, every effort was made to scare away the fairies, who were particularly dreaded at this season. In the West Highlands charms were used to avert their influence. In the Isle of Man the gorse was set alight to keep them at a distance. In some parts of Ireland the house was sprinkled with holy water to ward off fairy influence. These are only a mere handful out of the large number of references available, but they seem to me to reveal an effort to avoid the attentions of discredited deities on occasions of festival once sacred to them. The gods duly return at the appointed season, but instead of being received with adoration, they are rebuffed by the descendants of their former worshippers, who have embraced a faith which regards them as demons. In like manner the fairies in Ireland were chased away from the midsummer bonfires by casting fire at them. At the first approach of summer, the fairy folk of Scotland were wont to hold a "Rade," or ceremonial ride on horseback, when they were liable to tread down the growing grain.
Lewis Spence (British Fairy Origins)
James Madison, the author of the First Amendment to the Constitution, prohibiting any law respecting an establishment of religion, was also an author of Article VI, which states unambiguously that “no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust.” His later Detached Memoranda make it very plain that he opposed the government appointment of chaplains in the first place, either in the armed forces or at the opening ceremonies of Congress. “The establishment of the chaplainship to Congress is a palpable violation of equal rights, as well as of Constitutional principles.
Christopher Hitchens (God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything)
God, I might actually choke on these words. I trust you. And I wanna check this out, but I'm not stupid enough to go check it out myself, and I think I might... need you." - David "E-mail her. Make an appointment. And I'll... I'll go with you." - Harper
Rachel Hawkins (Rebel Belle (Rebel Belle, #1))
Never stop having doubts. If you ever do, it will be because you’ve stopped moving forward, and at that point, God will step in and pull the rug out from under your feet, because that is His way of controlling His chosen ones, by making sure they always follow their appointed path to the end. If, for any reason, we stop, whether out of complacency, laziness, or out of a mistaken belief that we know enough, He forces us on.
Paulo Coelho (Brida)
Most of us are not really so arrogant as to think we have a right to remold the world in our image. The best we can do, toward redeeming the states of Europe and Asia from the menace of revolution and the distresses of our time, is to realize our own conservative character, suspicious of doctrinaire alteration, respectful toward history, preferring variety over uniformity, acknowledging a moral order composed of human persons, not of mere political and economic atoms subservient to the state. We have not been appointed the correctors of mankind; but, under God, we may be an example to mankind.
Russell Kirk
When humans take up their divinely appointed role, looking after God's world on his behalf, this is not a Promethean attempt to usurp God's role. It is the humble, obedient carrying out of the role that has been assigned. The real arrogance would be to refuse the vocation, imagining that we know better than God the purpose for which we have been put here.
N.T. Wright (The Case for the Psalms: Why They Are Essential)
Prayer was appointed to convey The blessings God designs to give; Long as they live should Christians pray, For only while they pray they live.
Dwight L. Moody (Prevailing Prayer (Updated, Annotated): A Thorough Study on the Subject of Prayer)
Our disappointments are God’s appointments.
Cherie Hill (Waiting on God)
But if there is no God, then who made the knowledge? And if there is no God, then who appoints the kings? I think I must believe there's a God. I cannot rule a country by myself.
Lindsey Renee Backen (The Secret of Sentarra (The Calling, #1))
What right has the husband to require submission from his wife? None, unless God had appointed it.
Arthur W. Pink (The Attributes of God - with study questions)
Hope doesn't disappoint. God is FAITHFUL to His promises. Being delayed is a part of God's plan for our lives. So don't lose hope everything will come forth at the appointed time.
Dina Rolle
If we want to be spiritual, then, let us first of all live our lives. Let us not fear the responsibilities and the inevitable distractions of the work appointed for us by the will of God.
Thomas Merton (Thoughts In Solitude)
I have to trust that first comes the dust, and then comes the making of something even better with us. God isn’t ever going to forsake you, but He will go to great lengths to remake you. What if disappointment is really the exact appointment your soul needs to radically encounter God?
Lysa TerKeurst (It's Not Supposed to Be This Way: Finding Unexpected Strength When Disappointments Leave You Shattered)
However, what is done is better left alone, though we resent it still, and we must curb our hearts for my death, when Zeus and the other deathless gods appoint it, let it come.
Homer (The Iliad)
As a man of deep faith, Muhammad embraced and taught a theocentric understanding of leadership; that is, he believed that ultimately God chooses and puts in place all leaders, regardless of the specific procedure of a person’s appointment to a leadership role within a community or army.
Joel Hayward (The Leadership of Muhammad: A Historical Reconstruction)
The bird keeps silent and waits: it knows, or rather it fully and firmly believes, that everything takes place at its appointed time. Therefore the bird waits, but it knows that it is not granted to it to know the hour or the day; therefore it keeps silent. Then, when the moment comes, the silent bird understands that this is the moment; it makes use of it and is never put to shame.
Søren Kierkegaard (The Lily of the Field and the Bird of the Air: Three Godly Discourses)
Personal and relative duties must be done in obedience to his commands, with due aim at pleasing and honouring him, from principles of holy love and fear of him. But there is an express and direct duty also that we owe to God, namely, belief and acknowledgement of his being and perfections, paying him internal and external worship and homage - loving, fearing, and trusting in Him - depending on Him, and devoting ourselves to Him - observing all those religious duties and ordinances that He has appointed - praying to Him, praising Him, and meditating on His word and works.
Matthew Henry
All the methods of appointing authorities that have been tried, divine right, and election, and heredity, and balloting, and assemblies and parliaments and senate—all have proved ineffectual. Everyone knows that not one of these methods attains the aim either of entrusting power only to the incorruptible, or of preventing power from being abused. Everyone knows on the contrary that men in authority—be they emperors, ministers, governors, or police officers—are always, simply from the possession of power, more liable to be demoralized, that is, to subordinate public interests to their personal aims than those who have not the power to do so. Indeed, it could not be otherwise.
Leo Tolstoy (The Kingdom of God Is Within You)
It’s not selfish to prioritize your life to fulfill Destiny. It’s actually the most selfless thing you can do. God has an appointment for you to serve humanity in the greatest way possible for you.
T.D. Jakes (Destiny: Step into Your Purpose)
The finished shape of our fate, the line drawn round it. It is the task the gods allot us, and the share of glory they allow; the limits we must not pass; and our appointed end. Moira is all these.
Mary Renault (The King Must Die (Theseus, #1))
If we thought we were building up a heaven on earth, if we looked for something that would turn the present world from a place of pilgrimage into a permanent city satisfying the soul of man, we are disillusioned, and not a moment too soon. But if we thought that for some souls, and at some times, the life of learning, humbly offered to God, was, in its own small way, one of the appointed approaches to the Divine reality and the Divine beauty which we hope to enjoy hereafter, we can think so still.
C.S. Lewis (The Weight of Glory)
God help us all but he was right. It was time for him to die. There was nothing for him to do today, there was nothing for him to do today.… There, that was settled. Now let the whole thing begin again.
John O'Hara (Appointment in Samarra)
It is a profound political reality that Christ now occupies the supreme seat of cosmic authority. The kings of this world and all secular governments may ignore this reality, but they cannot undo it. The universe is no democracy. It is a monarchy. God himself has appointed his beloved Son as the preeminent King. Jesus does not rule by referendum, but by divine right. In the future every knee will bow before him, either willingly or unwillingly. Those who refuse to do so will have their knees broken with a rod of iron.
R.C. Sproul (What is Reformed Theology?: Understanding the Basics)
These struggles with the natural character, the strong native bent of the heart, may seem futile and fruitless, but in the end they do good. They tend, however slightly, to give the actions, the conduct, that turn which Reason approves, and which Feeling, perhaps too often opposes: they certainly make a difference in the general tenor of a life, and enable it to be better regulated, more equable, quieter on the surface; and it is on the surface only the common gaze will fall. As to what lies below, leave that with God. Man, your equal, weak as you, and not fit to be your judge, may be shut out thence: take it to your Maker--show Him the secrets of the spirit He gave--ask Him how you are to bear the pains He has appointed--kneel in His presence, and pray with faith for light in darkness, for strength in piteous weakness, for patience in extreme need. Certainly, at some hour, though perhaps not at your hour, the waiting hours will stir; in some shape, though perhaps not the shape you dreamed, which your heart loved, and for which it bled, the healing herald will descend.
Charlotte Brontë (Villette)
When God appoints the gospel of his Son as the universal remedy for the guilt and corruption of mankind, and we diminish that, the gospel is diminished. And you cannot diminish the gospel without being diminished yourself.
John Piper (Jesus: The Only Way to God: Must You Hear The Gospel To Be Saved?)
Who among us has not suddenly looked into his child's face, in the midst of the toils and troubles of everyday life, and at that moment "seen" that everything which is good, is loved and lovable, loved by God! Such certainties all mean, at bottom, one and the same thing: that the world is plumb and sound; that everything comes to its appointed goal; that in spite of all appearances, underlying all things is - peace, salvation, gloria; that nothing and no one is lost; that "God holds in his hand the beginning, middle, and end of all that is." Such nonrational, intuitive certainties of the divine base of all that is can be vouchsafed to our gaze even when it is turned toward the most insignificant-looking things, if only it is a gaze inspired by love. That, in the precise sense, is contemplation... Out of this kind of contemplation of the created world arise in never-ending wealth all true poetry and all real art, for it is the nature of poetry and art to be paean and praise heard above all the wails of lamentation. No one who is not capable of such contemplation can grasp poetry in a poetic fashion, that is to say, in the only meaningful fashion. The indispensability, the vital function of the arts in man's life, consists above all in this: that through them contemplation of the created world is kept alive and active.
Josef Pieper (Happiness and Contemplation)
The English word human literally means “a creature of earth,” from the word humus, or ground.[1] The humble word humble comes from the same origin and means “lowly, near the ground.”[2] God appointed gravity to keep us there.
Beth Moore (Chasing Vines: Finding Your Way to an Immensely Fruitful Life)
Remember that everything that happens to you is first filtered through God’s hand. Interruptions can become opportunities. What you might see as distractions God might see as divine appointments. Things may happen that seem so haphazard and distracting to our agenda, but with a fresh dose of perspective, they can turn into precious moments.
Lysa TerKeurst (Am I Messing Up My Kids?: ...and Other Questions Every Mom Asks)
And take up their cross.” That cross is already there, ready, from the very beginning; we need only take it up. But to keep us from believing that we must simply choose any arbitrary cross, or simply pick out our suffering as we will, Jesus emphasizes that each of us has his or her own cross, ready, appointed, and appropriately measured by God.1
Dietrich Bonhoeffer (God Is on the Cross: Reflections on Lent and Easter)
Out story never ends. You pull the pin out of a hand grenade, and in a few seconds it explodes and men in a small area get killed and wounded. That makes bodies to be buried, hurt men to be treated. It makes widows and fatherless children and bereaved parents. It means pension machinery, and it makes for pacifism in some and for lasting hatred in others. Again, a man out of the danger area sees the carnage the grenade creates, and he shoots himself in the foot. Another man had been standing there just two minutes before the thing went off, and thereafter he believes in God or in a rabbit’s foot. Another man sees human brains for the first time and locks up the picture until one night years later, when he finally comes out with a description of what he saw, and the horror of his description turns his wife away from him....
John O'Hara (Appointment in Samarra)
That when he had thus in prayer filled his mind with great sentiments of that infinite Being, he went to his work appointed in the kitchen (for he was cook to the society); there having first considered severally the things his office required, and when and how each thing was to be done, he spent all the intervals of his time, as well before as after his work, in prayer.
Brother Lawrence (The Practice of the Presence of God the Best Rule of a Holy Life)
we need to ask God how He wants us to live in the times He has appointed for us. If we work with Him, using the gifts and the strength He provides, then we’ll help build His kingdom, for His glory, here on earth. And that’s really the only thing that matters.
Lynn Austin (Fire by Night (Refiner's Fire #2))
I have learned that bitterness, resentment and self-pity do nothing to lift the gloomy clouds of a spiritual February in my life. If anything, these sins only harden the soil of my heart, making it difficult for new growth to spring forth at God’s appointed time.
Katherine J. Walden (Seasons: Reflections on Changes Throughout Life)
Who was I to meddle in people’s love lives? Mine was a mess. My heart wanted the one thing it wasn’t allowed to have — love with someone besides my cupid-appointed soul mate. I was so screwed up, I made the dysfunctional relationships on Jerry Springer look wholesome.
Jenn Windrow (Struck By Eros (Redeeming Cupid, #1))
Noticing that, he made a trail of the ring, to see if it had that power; and he found that whenever he turned the collet inside, he was invisible, when he turned it outside, visible. After he found this out he managed to be appointed one of the messengers to the king; when he got there, he seduced the king's wife, and with her set upon the king, and killed him, and seized the empire. Then if there could be two such rings, and if the just man put one on and the unjust the other, no one, as it would be thought, would be so adamantine as to abide in the practice of justice, no one could endure to hold back from another's goods and not to touch, when it was in his power to take what he would even out of the market without fear, and to go into any house and lie with anyone he wished, and to kill or set free from prison those he might wish, and to do anything else in the world like a very god. And in doing so he would do just the same as the other; both would go the same way. Surely one would call this a strong proof that no one is just willingly but only under a strong compulsion, believing that it is not a good to him personally; since wherever each thinks he will be able to do injustice, he does injustice.
Plato (The Republic)
Time and again, Jesus boldly affirmed the value and worth of women, and appointed them to be colaborers in the mission. Jesus unabashedly elevated the traditional role of women so they too could participate in the work of the kingdom of God.3 Women of the Bible were indeed emboldened.
Tara Beth Leach (Emboldened: A Vision for Empowering Women in Ministry)
Righteousness brings happiness. Wickedness never does. If there were no God, no plan, no law, and no divine order, there would be no reason wickedness would not bring happiness. But it never does. The history of civilization is a testament that hedonism, perversion, brutality, corruption, and wickedness sow seeds of misery, sorrow, and destruction. It is not a quirk of evolution. It is evidence of a divinely appointed plan.12
John Bytheway (How Do I Know If I Know?)
God has an appointment with each of us, and it is critical that every man and woman know this. He will stop our steps when it is not our time, and He will lead us when it is. This is a reassuring truth to know for every believer, and a necessary trust for anyone who ministers in areas of great risk.
Ravi Zacharias (Walking from East to West: God in the Shadows)
Nothing less than a great daring in the face of overwhelming odds can achieve the inner security in which fear cannot possibly survive. It is true that a man cannot be serene unless he possesses something about which to be serene. Here we reach the high-water mark of prophetic religion, and it is of the essence of the religion of Jesus of Nazareth. Of course God cares for the grass of the field, which lives a day and is no more, or the sparrow that falls unnoticed by the wayside. He also holds the stars in their appointed places, leaves his mark in every living thing. And he cares for me! To be assured of this becomes the answer to the threat of violence—yea, to violence itself. To the degree to which a man knows this, he is unconquerable from within and without.
Howard Thurman (Jesus and the Disinherited)
Often in the summer, as I go to or come from the vestry, I sit down for a moment on the turf that covers my old friend Rodgers, and think that this body of mine is everyday moldering away, til it shall fall a heap of dust into it's appointed place. But what is that to me? It is to me the drawing nigh of the fresh morning of life when I shall be young and strong again, glad in the presence of the wise and beloved dead, and unspeakably glad in the presence of God.
George MacDonald (Annals of a Quiet Neighborhood, Volume 2)
What is this earth and sea of which I have seen so much? Whence is it produced? And what am I and all the other creatures, wild and tame, humane and brutal? Whence are we? Sure we are all made by some secret power, who formed the earth and sea, the air and sky; and who is that? Then it followed most naturally, It is God that has made it all. Well, but then it came on strangely, if God has made all these things, He guides and governs them all, and all things that concern them; for the power that could make all things must certainly have power to guide and direct them. If so, nothing can happen in the great circuit of His works, either without His knowledge or appointment. And if nothing happens without His knowledge, He knows that I am here, and am in this dreadful condition; and if nothing happens without His appointment, He has appointed all this to befall me. Nothing occurred to my thought to contradict any of these conclusions; and therefore it rested upon me with the greater force that it must need be, that God had appointed all this to befall me; that I was brought to this miserable circumstance by His direction, He having the sole power, not of me only, but of every thing that happened in the world. Immediately it followed: Why has God done this to me? What have I done to be thus used?
Daniel Defoe (Robinson Crusoe)
Always and Forever was about a love bond so strong that it transcends physical limitations and worlds. Love survived death for both Katie and Ronan and Katie the ghost moves between worlds. In death she remained the protector and the strong one in the marriage. A love divinely blessed in church as a marriage and God appointed Katie as his angel to watch over him and sent her as his angel of death to carry him to heaven. Ronan after Katie’s death became a medium between Katie and the outside world. He saw her and can talk to her
Annette J. Dunlea
God determine the appointed time and boundaries of influence for every man.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
God rules and governs all events, including the free acts of men and their external circumstances, and directs all things to their appointed ends for His glory.
Layton Talbert
For Luther, it (faith) is an undeviating, trusting outlook appointment life, a constant stance of the trustworthiness of the promises of God.
Reformation Thought: An Introduction
The Lord Jesus did not take to himself this honour of being a Mediator; he was called to it, appointed of God for such a purpose.
I knew from catechism classes and other conversations that people who hadn't grown up with a loving father sometimes struggled to understand a loving God.
Reggie Anderson (Appointments with Heaven: The True Story of a Country Doctor's Healing Encounters with the Hereafter)
God has implicit confidence in you; He knows that you can accomplish His assignment at the appointed time
Sunday Adelaja
So look, I just remembered I have an appointment down the street--" ~ Magnus Chase
Rick Riordan (The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, #1))
When we commit our lives to the Lord, what happens to us happens by way of appointment and not by accident.
Warren W. Wiersbe (Be Committed (Ruth & Esther): Doing God's Will Whatever the Cost (The BE Series Commentary))
It requires powerful mercy for me to become a person who surrenders self-appointed authority to the authority of God.
Paul David Tripp (New Morning Mercies: A Daily Gospel Devotional)
I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation.” —C. S. Lewis, Reflections on the Psalms6
Richard J. Foster (Year with God: Living Out the Spiritual Disciplines)
I have observed that when any of us embarks on the pursuit of happiness for ourselves, it eludes us. Often I've asked myself why. It must be because happiness comes to us only as a dividend. When we become absorbed in something demanding and worthwhile above and beyond ourselves, happiness seems to be there as a by-product of the self-giving. That should not be a startling truth, yet I'm surprised by how few people understand and accept it. Have we made a god of happiness?..."You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide." John 15:16 RSV....Somehow that passage was like light penetrating their darkness: much of their unhappiness, they realized, was caused by self-centeredness.
Catherine Marshall (Something More : In Search of a Deeper Faith)
Wherefore, to be brief; at last, being still desired by the church, after some solemn prayer to the Lord, with fasting, I was more particularly called forth, and appointed to a more ordinary and public preaching of the word, not only to and amongst them that believed, but also to offer the gospel to those who had not yet received the faith thereof; about which time I did evidently find in my mind a secret pricking forward thereto; though I bless God, not for desire of vain-glory; for at that time I was most sorely afflicted with the fiery darts of the devil, concerning my eternal state.
John Bunyan (Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners)
But as a family physician, I'd had the opportunity to come in contact with people of all ages, and through the years I've noticed a curious parallel: children and the elderly both have the same kind of faith.
Reggie Anderson (Appointments with Heaven: The True Story of a Country Doctor's Healing Encounters with the Hereafter)
All my life,” she said, “I have been told ‘go’ and ‘come.’ I am told how I will live, and I am told how I must die. I must be a man’s servant and a mare for his pleasure, or I must hide myself behind walls and surrender my flesh to a cold, silent god. I would walk into the jaws of hell itself, if it were a path of my own choosing. I would rather die tomorrow in the forest than live a hundred years of the life appointed me...
Katherine Arden (The Bear and the Nightingale (The Winternight Trilogy, #1))
I told you Grandfather is easy. Tom, I mean my father, is the same: they don’t put barriers against me. It is Grandmother, it is always other women, apart from you, who put up barriers against girls and on themselves. I know men can be tyrants, but a lot of women are nasty to women – everybody says it, unless you have not met Jjajja Nsangi, Grandfather’s sister.’ ‘Kirabo, have you seen God come down from heaven to make humans behave?’ ‘No.’ ‘That is because some people have appointed themselves his police. And I tell you, child, the police are far worse than God himself. That is why the day you catch your man with another woman, you will go for the woman and not him. My grandmothers called it kweluma. That is when oppressed people turn on each other or on themselves and bite. It is as a form of relief. If you cannot bite your oppressor, you bite yourself.
Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi (The First Woman)
The question is, How can you see the divine intersection of all that shapes and marks your existence, whether it be the heart-wrenching tragedies that wound you or the ecstasy of a great delight that brings laughter to your soul? How can you meet God in all your appointments and your disappointments? How can you recognize that he has a purpose, even when all around seems senseless, if not hopeless? Will there be a last gasp that whispers in one word a conclusion that redefines everything? If so, is it possible to borrow from that word to enrich the now? Can we really see, even a little, the patterned convergence of everything into some grand design?
Ravi Zacharias (The Grand Weaver: How God Shapes Us Through the Events of Our Lives)
No human being—no preacher, no holy man, no church—can “put God at the center” of life. God is already there; we choose to perceive, or not to perceive, this fact. No one can “put God” anywhere; God is already there. What the fundamentalist preachers and self-appointed “holy men” mean is that they are going to put some man’s idea of God at the center—an idea that is born of the inflated egos of these preachers and holy men themselves.
Monica Sjöö (The Great Cosmic Mother: Rediscovering the Religion of the Earth)
The point of the calling was, quite simply, that it was appointed by God to serve neighbors. If along the way some self-fulfillment came as well, there was nothing wrong with that, but it was hardly the point of the calling.
Gilbert C. Meilaender (Friendship: Philosophy)
If God can transform cosmic entropy and malice alike into fire that purifies rather than destroys, how much more can He do this with the actions of well-intentioned but less-than-perfect leaders. In other words, it is reasonable to believe that in His infinite wisdom, God anticipates not only the devices and strategies of the wicked but also the foreseeable range of His leaders’ errors—and appoints them with those limitations already considered.
Terryl L. Givens (The Crucible of Doubt)
The man who has God’s mind doesn’t have to fight and struggle and push and be brash and make his own demands all the time. He knows when to lay back and take in God’s rest, and when to be aggressive and take the kingdom by force. So
Janny Grein (Called, Appointed, Anointed: Prepare Your Life to Be a Vessel for the Anointing & Glory of God)
Protestants, on the contrary, rejected the Church as a vehicle of revelation; truth was to be sought only in the Bible, which each man could interpret for himself. If men differed in their interpretation, there was no divinely appointed authority to decide the dispute. In practice, the State claimed the right that had formerly belonged to the Church, but this was a usurpation. In Protestant theory, there should be no earthly intermediary between the soul and God.
Bertrand Russell (A History of Western Philosophy: And Its Connection with Political and Social Circumstances from the Earliest Times to the Present Day)
Heaven is closer and more real than anything we experience in this life. And ultimately, I think that's why I've seen these glimpses---I'm always on the lookout for them. I believe if you look closely, you can clearly experience them too.
Reggie Anderson (Appointments with Heaven: The True Story of a Country Doctor's Healing Encounters with the Hereafter)
Purpose to develop an agreeable spirit. I'm not suggesting that you have to agree with everything everyone says. I'm simply saying that you're not obligated to correct them! No one has appointed you Earth's guardian of truth and accuracy. One
Robert Morris (The Power of Your Words: How God Can Bless Your Life Through the Words You Speak)
Do not quarrel, therefore, with your lot in life. Do not complain of its never-ceasing cares, its petty environment, the vexations you have to stand, the small and sordid souls you have to live and work with. Above all, do not resent temptation; do not be perplexed because it seems to thicken round you more and more, and ceases neither for effort nor for agony nor prayer. That is your practice. That is the practice which God appoints you; and it is having its work in making you patient, and humble, and generous, and unselfish, and kind, and courteous. Do not grudge the hand that is moulding the still too shapeless image within you. It is growing more beautiful, though you see it not; and every touch of temptation may add to its perfection. Therefore keep in the midst of life. Do not isolate yourself. Be among men and among things, and among troubles, and difficulties, and obstacles. You remember Goethe's words: "Talent develops itself in solitude; character in the stream of life.
Henry Drummond (The Best of Henry Drummond: The Greatest Thing in the World, Eternal Life, Beautiful Thoughts, Natural Law in the Spiritual World and More!)
The haughty nephew ... and an even haughtier wife, both convinced that Germany was appointed by God to govern the world. Aunt July would come the next day, convinced that Great Britain had been appointed to the same post by the same authority. Were both these loud-voiced parties right? On one occasion they had met, and Margaret ... had implored them to argue the subject out in her presence. Whereat they blushed and began to talk about the weather. ... Margaret then remarked: "To me one of two things is very clear; either God does not know his own mind about England and Germany, or else these do not know the mind of God." A hateful little girl, but at thirteen she had grasped a dilemma that most people travel through life without perceiving.
E.M. Forster (Howards End)
I have observed that when any of us embarks on the pursuit of happiness for ourselves, it eludes us. Often I've asked myself why. It must be because happiness comes to us only as a dividend. When we become absorbed in something demanding and worthwhile above and beyond ourselves, happiness seems to be there as a by-product of the self-giving. That should not be a startling truth, yet I'm surprised by how few people understand and accept it. Have we made a god of happiness?..."You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide." John 15:16 RSV....Somehow that passage was like light penetrating their darkness: much of their unhappiness, they realized, was caused by self-centeredness.
Catherine Marshall
Should I shrink from the work that God had set before me, because it was not fitted to my taste? Did not He know best what I should do, and where I ought to labour? and should I long to quit His service before I had finished my task, and expect to enter into His rest without having laboured to earn it? "No; by His help I will arise and address myself diligently to my appointed duty. If happiness in this world is not for me, I will endeavour to promote the welfare of those around me, and my reward shall be hereafter.
Anne Brontë (Agnes Grey (Penguin Classics))
Want to know the coolest thing about the coming? Not that the One who played marbles with the stars gave it up to play marbles with marbles. Or that the One who hung the galaxies gave it up to hang doorjambs to the displeasure of a cranky client who wanted everything yesterday but couldn't pay until tomorrow. Not that he, in an instant, went from needing nothing to needing air, food, a tub of hot water and salts for his tired feet, and, more than anything, needing somebody - anybody - who was more concerned about where he would spend eternity rather than where he would spend Friday's paycheck. Or that he resisted the urge to fry the two=bit, self-appointed hall monitors of holiness who dared suggest that he was doing the work of the devil. Not that he kept his cool while the dozen best friends he ever had felt the heat and got out of the kitchen. Or that he gave no command to the angels who begged, "Just give us the nod, Lord. One word and these demons will be deviled eggs." Not that he refused to defend himself when blamed for every sin of every slut and sailor since Adam. Or that he stood silent as a million guilty verdicts echoed in the tribunal of heaven and the giver of light was left in the chill of a sinner's night. Not even that after three days in a dark hole he stepped into the Easter sunrise with a smile and a swagger and a question for lowly Lucifer - "Is that your best punch?" That was cool, incredibly cool. But want to know the coolest thing about the One who gave up the crown of heaven for a crown of thorns? He did it for you. Just for you.
Max Lucado (He Chose the Nails: What God Did to Win Your Heart)
I am reminded that the children we birth do not belong to us. They belong to God. We are simply the vessel through which they arrive on this earth. We are appointed to care for and guide them; however, we must recognize when the time comes for them to govern their own lives.
Nancy B. Brewer
And what ails you that you fight not in the way of God, and for the weak and oppressed—men, women, and children—who cry out, “Our Lord! Bring us forth from this town whose people are oppressors, and appoint for us from Thee a protector, and appoint for us from Thee a helper.
Seyyed Hossein Nasr (The Study Quran: A New Translation and Commentary)
That much hope had brought Max to his knees. Apparently if he didn’t let himself weep like a little girl to relieve this emotional pressure building inside of him, he was in danger of hitting the ground in a dead faint. Jules crouched beside him, checking for his pulse. “Are you okay? You’re not, like, having a heart attack or a stroke, are you?” “Fuck you,” Max managed, swatting his hand away. “I’m not that old.” “If you really think heart disease is about age, then you definitely need to make an appointment with a cardiologist, like tomorrow—” “I just . . . tripped,” Max said, but when he tried to get up, he found he still hadn’t regained his equilibrium. Shit. “Or maybe you needed to get on your knees to pray,” Jules said as Max put his head down and waited for the dizziness to pass. “That excuse sounds a little more believable, if you want to know the truth. ‘Hello God? It’s me, Max. I know I’ve been lax in my attention to You over the past forty-mmph years, but if You give me a second chance, I’ll make absolutely certain this time around I’ll tell Gina just how much I love her. Because withholding that information sure as hell didn’t do either of us one bit of good, now did it?’” “I did what I—“ Max stopped himself. To hell with that. “I don’t have to explain myself to you.” “That’s right, you don’t.” Jules ignored Max’s attempt to push him away, and helped him to his feet. “But you might want to work up some kind of Forgive-Me-For-Being-a-Butthead speech for when you come face to face with Gina. Although, I’ve got to admit that the falling to the knees thing might make an impact. You’ll definitely get big points for drama.
Suzanne Brockmann (Breaking Point (Troubleshooters, #9))
You don't have to worry in the least, because in Belgium you will be able to enjoy all the benefits with which I will shower you, choose your replacement carefully, and appoint him only with my approval, until then then you will remain on your post my faithful cloak. May God guide and support you in the missions I entrust to you for the sake of my subjects, I wish that all your duties have already been carried out, so that when you come to Belgium I can prove to you that I am a true friend my faithful cloak, I pray to God that he may protect you.
King Leopold II of Belgium
The prophets of Israel were individuals called by God to bring the people back to God. The office of prophet was not hereditary like that of priest or king. Prophets were chosen from many different walks of life, and the call was not an invitation but a divine appointment (see
Henry H. Halley (Halley's Bible Handbook with the New International Version)
I prefer your company, Em." He said it as if it were obvious. I snorted again, assuming he was teasing me. "Over the company of a tavern filled with a rapt and grateful audience? I'm sure you do." "Over anyone else's company." Again, he said it with some amusement, as if wondering what I was doing speculating about something so evident. "You are drunk," I said. "Shall I prove it to you?" "No, you shan't," I said, alarmed, but he was already sweeping to the floor, bending his knee and taking my hand between his. "What in God's name are you doing?" I said between my teeth. "And why are you doing it now?" "Shall I make an appointment?" he said, then laughed. "Yes, I believe you would like that. Well, name the time when it would be convenient for you to receive a declaration of love." "Oh, get up," I said, furious now. "What sort of jest is this, Wendell?" "You don't believe me?" He smiled, all mischief, a look I'd seen from other Folk, enough to know not to trust him one inch. "Ask for my true name, and I'll give it to you." "Why on earth would you do that?" I demanded, yanking my hand back. "Oh, Em," he said forlornly. "You are the cleverest dolt I have ever met." I stared at him, my heart thundering. Of course, I am not a dolt in any sense; I had supposed he felt something for me and had only hoped he would keep it to himself. Forever. Not that a part of me didn't wish for the opposite. But that was when I assumed his feelings in that respect were equivalent to what he felt for any of the nameless women who passed in and out of his bed. And why would I lower myself to that, when he and I already had something that was vastly more valuable?
Heather Fawcett (Emily Wilde's Encyclopaedia of Faeries (Emily Wilde, #1))
When I asked the Reb, Why do bad things happen to good people?, he gave none of the standard answers. He quietly said, “No one knows.” I admired that. But when I asked if that ever shook his belief in God, he was firm. “I cannot waver,” he said. Well, you could, if you didn’t believe in something all-powerful. “An atheist,” he said. Yes. “And then I could explain why my prayers were not answered.” Right. He studied me carefully. He drew in his breath. “I had a doctor once who was an atheist. Did I ever tell you about him?” No. “This doctor, he liked to jab me and my beliefs. He used to schedule my appointments deliberately on Saturdays, so I would have to call the receptionist and explain why, because of my religion, that wouldn’t work.” Nice guy, I said. “Anyhow, one day, I read in the paper that his brother had died. So I made a condolence call.” After the way he treated you? “In this job,” the Reb said, “you don’t retaliate.” I laughed. “So I go to his house, and he sees me. I can tell he is upset. I tell him I am sorry for his loss. And he says, with an angry face, ‘I envy you.’ “‘Why do you envy me?’ I said. “‘Because when you lose someone you love, you can curse God. You can yell. You can blame him. You can demand to know why. But I don’t believe in God. I’m a doctor! And I couldn’t help my brother!’ “He was near tears. ‘Who do I blame?’ he kept asking me. ‘There is no God. I can only blame myself.’” The Reb’s face tightened, as if in pain. “That,” he said, softly, “is a terrible self-indictment.” Worse than an unanswered prayer? “Oh yes. It is far more comforting to think God listened and said no, than to think that nobody’s out there.
Mitch Albom (Have a Little Faith: A True Story)
The simple Christian looks to God alone to supply him with spiritual joys, understanding that there will be times when those joys may be withheld by God for a divinely appointed reason. Yet, because he aims to live for God’s glory alone, he looks to God alone for his soul’s pleasure (Ps. 86:4).
Tony Reinke (Newton on the Christian Life: To Live Is Christ)
The spiritual life is first of all a life. It is not merely something to be known and studied, it is to be lived. ... If we want to be spiritual, then, let us first of all live our lives. Let us not fear the responsibilities and the inevitable distractions of the work appointed by the will of God.
Thomas Merton (Thoughts in Solitude)
Benjamin Franklin, however, wrote: To relieve the misfortunes of our fellow creatures is concurring with the Deity; it is godlike; but, if we provide encouragement for laziness, and supports for folly, may we not be found fighting against the order of God and nature, which perhaps has appointed want and misery as the proper punishments for, and cautions against, as well as necessary consequences of, idleness and extravagance? Whenever we attempt to amend the scheme of Providence, and to interfere with the government of the world, we had need be very circumspect, lest we do more harm than good.
Ben Carson (America the Beautiful: Rediscovering What Made This Nation Great)
Tthe thing is, Dr. Foster…the truth is, I like Marina.” He eyed the doctor. “And I actually don’t like you very much.” Oh, it was worth it. God, it was worth it. To see the perennially calm face turn pale, only slightly, but still pale; to see him blink away the hurt in his watery, pallid blue eyes.
Amelia Mangan (Release)
Two days after he had appointed the special oversight commission, sixty-one-year-old Monsignor Nunzio Scarano, an APSA senior accountant, was arrested. Prosecutors charged he was the mastermind in helping friends avoid taxes on $26.2 million, some of it cash flown to Italy on a private jet from Switzerland.
Gerald Posner (God's Bankers: A History of Money and Power at the Vatican)
Had Lucifer really desired to be like the Most High, he would never have deserted his appointed place in heaven; for the spirit of the Most High is manifested in unselfish ministry. Lucifer desired God’s power, but not His character. He sought for himself the highest [436] place, and every being who is actuated by his spirit will do the same. Thus alienation, discord, and strife will be inevitable. Dominion becomes the prize of the strongest. The kingdom of Satan is a kingdom of force; every individual regards every other as an obstacle in the way of his own advancement, or a steppingstone on which he himself may
Ellen Gould White (The Desire of Ages (Conflict of the Ages Book 3))
Tyler, I can recommend a good therapist. There's absolutely no shame in seeking help for mental instability." "I'll keep it in mind. God knows I haven't been clear in the head since I got tangled up with you. We can make an appointment together, after you move in." "I'm not moving in with you." "Yes, you are.
Nora Roberts (The Villa)
There cannot be a personal God without a pessimistic religion. A personal God is a disappointing God; and Job, Omar Khayyam, Euripides, Palladas, Voltaire and Professor Housman will denounce him. With Buddhism, Taoism, Quietism, and the God of Spinoza there can be no disappointment, because there is no Appointment.
Palinurus (The Unquiet Grave: A Word Cycle by Palinurus)
How often do we experience delays, changes of plans, and redirections and treat them as intrusions? God can use inconveniences in our lives if we look at them as divine appointments. From Our Daily Bread: " Disappointment - His appointment, change one letter, then I see; That the thwarting of my purpose is God's better choice for me".
Our Daily Bread Publications
Over the past 8 years, I have stripped my life down. I don’t need as much as I thought I did. It was hard at first to make that change. I had to have faith and patience. And so, I did. Now, I have God and great people in my life. Everything else just seems to follow. Sometimes we don’t understand about the need to live more simply. We can make appointments all day long, 7 days a week. We can even schedule and plan for our deaths. I was fortunate to be freed to really be myself again, while there is still time and something left of me. And now, up here, there’s nothing but me (and Kilo) and the sky and a million billion stars. And once again, I am free to dream...
José N. Harris
For the spiritual efficacy of the Sacrament doth not depend upon the nature of the thing received, supposing we received what our Lord appointed, and receive it with a right preparation and disposition of mind, but upon the supernatural blessing that goes along with it, and makes it effectual to those spiritual ends for which it was appointed.
John Tillotson (A Discourse Against Transubstantiation)
The Scream Death changes the meaning of words   Life is not what it use to mean the carefree seamless summer of my childhood is stitched into seasons years decades appointments filling the void with more blackness like oil roiling from the ocean floor love is bottom-lined to to the slit of pleasure God to the slit of the confessional work to clock-punching family to obligation friends to activity partners going through the motions watching myself in a movie in a dream at a wake... we are all amnesiacs lost we suffer from anosognosia and adderall and chronic fatigue and hypochondria he hobbles trembling forsaken alone pressing his ears like a vise in the Krakatoan twilight   I scream
Beryl Dov
Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world. He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power.
Anonymous (ESV Reader's Bible)
In the beginning God did not make a church or cathedral, he made a family. In the beginning God did not appoint apostles, or prophets, or pastors etc, he appointed a husband and a wife in the covenant of marriage. In Genesis, the first mankind gathering was a wedding ceremony, and not a worship meeting. After God, the next thing that came was marriage.
Taka Sande (Little Tough Tips On Marriage)
Who I Am in Christ I Am Accepted   John 1:12 I am God’s child. John 15:15 I am Christ’s friend. Romans 5:1 I have been justified. 1 Corinthians 6:17 I am united with the Lord, and I am one spirit with Him. 1 Corinthians 6:20 I have been bought with a price. I belong to God. 1 Corinthians 12:27 I am a member of Christ’s Body. Ephesians 1:1 I am a saint. Ephesians 1:5 I have been adopted as God’s child. Ephesians 2:18 I have direct access to God through the Holy Spirit. Colossians 1:14 I have been redeemed and forgiven of all my sins. Colossians 2:10 I am complete in Christ. I Am Secure   Romans 8:1-2 I am free from condemnation. Romans 8:28 I am assured all things work together for good. Romans 8:31-34 I am free from any condemning charges against me. Romans 8:35-39 I cannot be separated from the love of God. 2 Corinthians 1:21-22 I have been established, anointed and sealed by God. Philippians 1:6 I am confident that the good work God has begun in me will be perfected. Philippians 3:20 I am a citizen of heaven. Colossians 3:3 I am hidden with Christ in God. 2 Timothy 1:7 I have not been given a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind. Hebrews 4:16 I can find grace and mercy in time of need. 1 John 5:18 I am born of God and the evil one cannot touch me. I Am Significant   Matthew 5:13-14 I am the salt and light of the earth. John 15:1,5 I am a branch of the true vine, a channel of His life. John 15:16 I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit. Acts 1:8 I am a personal witness of Christ. 1 Corinthians 3:16 I am God’s temple. 2 Corinthians 5:17-21 I am a minister of reconciliation for God. 2 Corinthians 6:1 I am God’s coworker (see 1 Corinthians 3:9). Ephesians 2:6 I am seated with Christ in the heavenly realm. Ephesians 2:10 I am God’s workmanship. Ephesians 3:12 I may approach God with freedom and confidence. Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Neil T. Anderson (Victory Over the Darkness: Realize the Power of Your Identity in Christ)
We let go of all of the unhealthy experiences and perspectives of our past as they diminish the joys of our present and ruin the hope of our future. We thank You for giving us beauty for ashes, joy for grief, and the Spirit of praise for the spirit of heaviness (Isaiah 61:1, 3 The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified).
Tina Campbell (I Need A Day to Pray)
Suffering is no scandal. It is natural. Nature appoints it. All creation suffers. It suffers from having been created, if from nothing else. It suffers from being divided from God.' 'Yours is a melancholy sort of religion, Dennis. I'm afraid I don't believe in God.' 'Ah, you do. But you do not know His name. And I who know His name am only the better of you by one little word. Here is the salmon pool.
Iris Murdoch (The Unicorn)
I made this my business as much all the day long as at the appointed times of prayer; for at all times, every hour, every minute, even in the height of my business, I drove away from my mind everything that was capable of interrupting my thought of GOD. Such has been my common practice ever since I entered in religion; and, though I have done it very imperfectly, yet I have found great advantages by it.
Brother Lawrence (The Practice of the Presence of God the Best Rule of a Holy Life)
Bizarrely, almost every statist admits that politicians are more dishonest, corrupt, conniving and selfish than most people, but still insists that civilization can exist only if those particularly untrustworthy people are given both the power and the right to forcibly control everyone else. Believers in "government" truly believe that the only thing that can keep them safe from the flaws of human nature is taking some of those flawed humans—some of the most flawed, in fact—and appointing them as gods, with the right to dominate all of mankind, in the absurd hope that, if given such tremendous power, such people will use it only for good. And the fact that that has never happened in the history of the world does not stop statists from insisting that it "needs" to happen to ensure peaceful civilization.
Larken Rose (The Most Dangerous Superstition)
I read in the Gulistan, or Flower Garden, of Sheik Sadi of Shiraz, that "they asked a wise man, saying: Of the many celebrated trees which the Most High God has created lofty and umbrageous, they call none azad, or free, excepting the cypress, which bears no fruit; what mystery is there in this? He replied, Each has its appropriate produce, and appointed season, during the continuance of which it is fresh and blooming, and during their absence dry and withered; to neither of which states is the cypress exposed, being always flourishing; and of this nature are the azads, or religious independents.—Fix not thy heart on that which is transitory; for the Dijlah, or Tigris, will continue to flow through Bagdad after the race of caliphs is extinct: if thy hand has plenty, be liberal as the date tree; but if it affords nothing to give away, be an azad, or free man, like the cypress.
Henry David Thoreau (Walden)
Eseldorf was a paradise for us boys. We were not overmuch pestered with schooling. Mainly we were trained to be good Christians; to revere the Virgin, the Church, and the saints above everything. Beyond these matters we were not required to know much; and, in fact, not allowed to. Knowledge was not good for the common people, and could make them discontented with the lot which God had appointed for them, and God would not endure discontentment with His plans.
Mark Twain (The Mysterious Stranger)
God has appointed that each human being should live one life, die one death and pass through one judgment for the life once lived. Therefore Jesus Christ also lived one life, died one death and God judged the life Christ had lived. Finding it pleasing in every respect, God certified his verdict by raising Christ from the dead. Because of Jesus’ one life, one death and one judgment, God accepts the “many” who now eagerly wait for him to return bringing salvation. UNPACKING
Edward Fudge (Hebrews: Ancient Encouragement for Believers Today)
Every act should be considered from the point of view not of its object but of its impulsion. The question is not ‘What is the aim?’ It is ‘What is the origin?’ ‘I was naked, and ye clothed me.’ This gift is simply an indication of the state of those who acted in this way. They were in a state which made it impossible for them not to feed the hungry and to clothe the naked; they did not in any way do it for Christ, they could not help doing it because the compassion of Christ was in them. It was the same with Saint Nicholas who, when going across the Russian Steppes with Saint Cassian to meet God, could not help being late for the appointed time of meeting because he had to help a poor peasant to move his cart which had stuck in the mud. Good which is done in this way, almost in spite of ourselves, almost shamefacedly and apologetically, is pure. All absolutely pure goodness completely eludes the will. Goodness is transcendent. God is Goodness.
Simone Weil (Gravity and Grace)
Quote from Father Tim during a sermon given after the former priest was found after a suicide attempt. "      'Father Talbot has charged me to tell you that he is deeply repentant for not serving you as God appointed him to do, and as you hoped and needed him to do.         'He wished very much to bring you this message himself, but he could not.  He bids you goodbye with a love he confesses he never felt toward you...until this day.  He asks--and I quote him--that you might find it in your hearts to forgive him his manifold sins against God and this parish.'         He felt the tears on his face before he knew he was weeping, and realized instinctively that he would have no control over the display.  He could not effectively carry on, no even turn his face away or flee the pulpit.  He was in the grip of a wild grief that paralyzed everything but itself.          He wept face forward, then, into the gale of those aghast at what was happening, wept for the wounds of any clergy gone out into a darkness of self-loathing and beguilement; for the loss and sorrow of those who could not believe, or who had once believed but lost all sense of shield and buckler and any notion of God's radical tenderness, for the ceaseless besettings of the flesh, for the worthless idols of his own and of others; for those sidetracked, stumped, frozen, flung away, for those both false and true, the just and the unjust, the quick and the dead.           He wept for himself, for the pain of the long years and the exquisite satisfactions of the faith, for the holiness of the mundane, for the thrashing exhaustions and the endless dyings and resurrectings that malign the soul incarnate.           It had come to this, a thing he had subtly feared for more than forty years--that he would weep before the many--and he saw that his wife would not try to talk him down from this precipice, she would trust him to come down himself without falling or leaping.         And people wept with him, most of them.  Some turned away, and a few got up and left in a hurry, fearful of the swift and astounding movement of the Holy Spirit among them, and he, too, was afraid--of crying aloud in a kind of ancient howl and humiliating himself still further.  But the cry burned out somewhere inside and he swallowed down what remained and the organ began to play, softly, piously.  He wished it to be loud and gregarious, at the top of its lungs--Bach or Beethoven, and not the saccharine pipe that summoned the vagabond sins of thought, word, and deed to the altar, though come to think of it, the rail was the very place to be right now, at once, as he, they, all were desperate for the salve of the cup, the Bread of Heaven.             And then it was over.  He reached into the pocket of his alb and wondered again how so many manage to make in this world without carrying a handkerchief.  And he drew it out and wiped his eyes and blew his nose as he might at home, and said, 'Amen.'                 And the people said, 'Amen.
Jan Karon
The blessings of salvation are for every soul. Nothing but his own choice can prevent any man from becoming a partaker of the promise in Christ by the gospel. Caste is hateful to God. He ignores everything of this character. In His sight the souls of all men are of equal value. He “hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; that they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after Him, and find Him, though He be not far from every one of us.” Without distinction of age, or rank, or nationality, or religious privilege, all are invited to come unto Him and live. “Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed. For there is no difference.” “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free.” “The rich and poor meet together: the Lord is the Maker of them all.” “The same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon Him. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Acts 17:26, 27;
Ellen Gould White (The Desire of Ages (Conflict of the Ages Book 3))
Such a guru, ordained by God to help individuals in response to their deep prayers, is not an ordinary teacher; but is a human vehicle whose body, speech, mind, and spirituality God uses as a channel to attract and guide lost souls back to His home of immortality. We meet various teachers in the beginning, through our vague desire to know truth. But a guru is a living embodiment of scriptural truth and an agent of salvation appointed by God in response to a devotee's incessant petitions for release from the bondage of matter.
Parmahansa Yogananda
The sun and moon keep their appointed seasons; the animals get up when God tells them to get up and they lie down when God directs them to do so. What is the result? “The earth is satisfied” (verse 13); “they are filled with good” (verse 28). Did you catch that? To surrender to the Creator’s control is not onerous or burdensome; it is, in fact, the place of blessing, fullness, and peace. There is no evidence in this passage of any stress, struggle, or strain. Why? Because the creation is not vying with the Creator for control.
Nancy Leigh DeMoss (Brokenness, Surrender, Holiness: A Revive Our Hearts Trilogy (Revive Our Hearts Series))
The last time I’d been unwell, suicidally depressed, whatever you want to call it, the reactions of my friends and family had fallen into several different camps: The Let’s Laugh It Off merchants: Claire was the leading light. They hoped that joking about my state of mind would reduce it to a manageable size. Most likely to say, ‘Feeling any mad urges to fling yourself into the sea?’ The Depression Deniers: they were the ones who took the position that since there was no such thing as depression, nothing could be wrong with me. Once upon a time I’d have belonged in that category myself. A subset of the Deniers was The Tough Love people. Most likely to say, ‘What have you got to be depressed about?’ The It’s All About Me bunch: they were the ones who wailed that I couldn’t kill myself because they’d miss me so much. More often than not, I’d end up comforting them. My sister Anna and her boyfriend, Angelo, flew three thousand miles from New York just so I could dry their tears. Most likely to say, ‘Have you any idea how many people love you?’ The Runaways: lots and lots of people just stopped ringing me. Most of them I didn’t care about, but one or two were important to me. Their absence was down to fear; they were terrified that whatever I had, it was catching. Most likely to say, ‘I feel so helpless … God, is that the time?’ Bronagh – though it hurt me too much at the time to really acknowledge it – was the number one offender. The Woo-Woo crew: i.e. those purveying alternative cures. And actually there were hundreds of them – urging me to do reiki, yoga, homeopathy, bible study, sufi dance, cold showers, meditation, EFT, hypnotherapy, hydrotherapy, silent retreats, sweat lodges, felting, fasting, angel channelling or eating only blue food. Everyone had a story about something that had cured their auntie/boss/boyfriend/next-door neighbour. But my sister Rachel was the worst – she had me plagued. Not a day passed that she didn’t send me a link to some swizzer. Followed by a phone call ten minutes later to make sure I’d made an appointment. (And I was so desperate that I even gave plenty of them a go.) Most likely to say, ‘This man’s a miracle worker.’ Followed by: ‘That’s why he’s so expensive. Miracles don’t come cheap.’ There was often cross-pollination between the different groupings. Sometimes the Let’s Laugh It Off merchants teamed up with the Tough Love people to tell me that recovering from depression is ‘simply mind over matter’. You just decide you’re better. (The way you would if you had emphysema.) Or an All About Me would ring a member of the Woo-Woo crew and sob and sob about how selfish I was being and the Woo-Woo crew person would agree because I had refused to cough up two grand for a sweat lodge in Wicklow. Or one of the Runaways would tiptoe back for a sneaky look at me, then commandeer a Denier into launching a two-pronged attack, telling me how well I seemed. And actually that was the worst thing anyone could have done to me, because you can only sound like a self-pitying malingerer if you protest, ‘But I don’t feel well. I feel wretched beyond description.’ Not one person who loved me understood how I’d felt. They hadn’t a clue and I didn’t blame them, because, until it had happened to me, I hadn’t a clue either.
Marian Keyes
There is a dreadful abyss at the end of heaven and earth where there is no firmament of the heavens above, and no earth beneath it. Columns of heavenly fire fill the abyss, the smell of sulphur is everywhere, and around it there is a wasteland without water; with no birds to be seen. This place is God's prison for rebellious stars and fallen angels. In it are seven stars burning like great mountains as they roll over the fire of the abyss. Because they did not come forth at their appointed times, God has bound them in that place for ten thousand years.
Howard Schwartz (Tree of Souls: The Mythology of Judaism)
And what was the place appointed?” I asked. “A little stone church.” “So the first official act of the newly formed government took place inside the walls of a church.” “That’s correct,” he replied. “The nation’s first president, Senate, and House of Representatives were all there inside that little stone sanctuary. The gathering would be recorded in the Annals of The Mystery Ground 203 Congress as part of the first-ever joint session of Congress with an acting president. The inauguration of the United States, as we know it, began with a sacred gathering before God.
Jonathan Cahn (The Harbinger: The Ancient Mystery that Holds the Secret of America's Future)
The Call of Jeremiah 4Now the word of the LORD came to me, saying,     5  i “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,     and before you were born  j I consecrated you;     I appointed you a prophet  k to the nations.” 6Then I said, “Ah, Lord GOD! Behold,  l I do not know how to speak,  m for I am only a youth.” 7But the LORD said to me,     “Do not say, ‘I am only a youth’;     for to all to whom I send you, you shall go,     and  n whatever I command you, you shall speak. 8     o Do not be afraid of them,      p for I am with you to deliver you, declares the LORD.
Anonymous (The Holy Bible: English Standard Version)
Let me tell you one story to illustrate what I mean. I remember a woman who was a spiritist, and even a medium, a paid medium employed by a spiritist society. She used to go every Sunday evening to a spiritist meeting and was paid three guineas for acting as a medium. This was during the thirties, and that was quite a large sum of money for a lower middle-class woman. She was ill one Sunday and could not go to keep her appointment. She was sitting in her house and she saw people passing by on their way to the church where I happened to be ministering in South Wales. Something made her feel a desire to know what those people had, and so she decided to go to the service, and did. She came ever afterwards until she died, and became a very fine Christian. One day I asked her what she had felt on that first visit, and this is what she said to me; and this is the point I am illustrating. She said, 'The moment I entered your chapel and sat down on a seat amongst the people I was conscious of a power. I was conscious of the same sort of power as I was accustomed to in our spiritist meetings, but there was one big difference; I had a feeling that the power in your chapel was a clean power.' The point I am making is simply this, that she was aware of a power. This is this mysterious element. It is the presence of the Spirit in the heart of God's children, God's people, and an outsider becomes aware of this. This is something you can never get if you just sit and read a book on your own. The Spirit can use a book, I know, but because of the very constitution of man's nature -our gregarious character, and the way in which we lean on one another, and are helped by one another even unconsciously- this is a most important factor. That is so in a natural sense, but when the Spirit is present, it is still more so. I am not advocating a mob or a mass psychology which I regard as extremely dangerous, particularly when it is worked up. All I am contending for is that when you enter a church, a society, a company of God' s people, there is a factor which immediately comes into operation, which is reinforced still more by the preacher expounding the Word in the pulpit; and that is why preaching can never be replaced by either reading or by watching television or anyone of these other activities.
D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Many centuries ago the Christians of Abyssinia saw in the plague a sure and God-sent means of winning eternal life. Those who were not yet stricken wrapped round them sheets in which men had died of plague, so as to make sure of their death. I grant you such a frenzied quest of salvation was not to be commended. It shows an overhaste—indeed, a presumptuousness, which we can but deplore. No man should seek to force God’s hand or to hurry on the appointed hour, and from a practice that aims at speeding up the order of events which God has ordained unalterably from all time, it is but a step to heresy.
Albert Camus (The Plague)
By contrast, in the West the mere existence of psychic phenomena remains a contentious issue, despite persistent interest and popular belief. There are a number of reasons for this chronic tension. On the religious side, within the Judeo-Christian-Islamic traditions, only God (or those he appoints) is allowed to perform miracles. Ordinary folks who perform such feats are considered suspect (by theists) if they’re lucky and heretical if they’re not. And on the scientific side, there is a widely held (but incorrect, as we’ll see) assumption that these phenomena cannot exist because they violate one or more scientific principles.
Dean Radin (Supernormal: Science, Yoga and the Evidence for Extraordinary Psychic Abilities)
This election is so devastating. . . . Is there any hope? Where is God in the midst of this? This is a question Black people have been collectively asking for centuries as we have been traumatized by one bogus elected official after another. It’s a question that Black LGBTQ+ people have been asking as they encounter persistent condemnation and rejection in many Black church spaces. It’s a question that more and more white women like the New Orleanian sculptor have been asking since Donald Trump was elected and Judge Brett Kavanaugh was appointed to the Supreme Court despite being accused of sexually assaulting Dr. Christine Blasey
Christena Cleveland (God Is a Black Woman)
I reminded him that I was there by appointment to offer him my book for publication. He began to swell and went on swelling and swelling and swelling until he had reached the size of a god of about the second or third degree. Then the fountains of his great deep were broken up and for two or three minutes I couldn’t see him for the rain. It was words, only words, but they fell so thickly that they darkened the atmosphere. Finally he made an important sweep with his right hand which took in the whole room, and said: “ Books—look around you! Every place are books that are waiting for publication. Do I want any more? Excuse me, I don’t. Good morning.
Mark Twain
8.22-5. “Fear God. Honor the emperor.” (1 Peter 2:17.) Scripture tells us that, in the as yet unredeemed world in which the Church also exists, the State has by divine appointment the task of providing for justice and peace. [It fulfills this task] by means of the threat and exercise of force, according to the measure of human judgment and human ability. The Church acknowledges the benefit of this divine appointment in gratitude and reverence before him. It calls to mind the Kingdom of God, God’s commandment and righteousness, and thereby the responsibility both of rulers and of the ruled. It trusts and obeys the power of the Word by which God upholds all things.
Eric Metaxas (Bonhoeffer: Pastor, Martyr, Prophet, Spy)
He said he would not yield his judgment to anything proposed by the Church, or any individuals of the Church, or even the Great I Am, given through the appointed organ, as revelation, but would always act upon his own judgment, let him believe in whatever religion he might. He stated he would always say what he pleased, for he was a Republican, and as such would do, say, act, and believe what he pleased. Mark such republicanism as this! A man to oppose his own judgment to the judgment of God, and at the same time to profess to believe in that same God, who has said: "The foolishness of God is wiser than man; and the weakness of God is stronger, than man." [DHC3:66]
Joseph Smith Jr.
But enslaved people were not uncritical or gullible in their appropriation of the biblical text. John Jea, already quoted as an example of early black reverence for the Scripture, also illustrates the ability of some slaves to distinguish between the reliability of the Bible’s content itself and the unreliable teaching of the Bible in the hands of some white masters. Jea recalls: After our master had been treating us in this cruel manner [severe floggings, sometimes unto death], we were obliged to thank him for the punishment he had been inflicting on us, quoting that Scripture which saith, “Bless the rod, and him that hath appointed it.” But, though he was a professor of religion, he forgot that passage which saith “God is love, and whoso dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.” And, again, we are commanded to love our enemies; but it appeared evident that his wretched heart was hardened.8 Jea’s account and others like it teach us that African-American Christians trusted the Bible while they suspected the self-serving motives and Scripture-twisting actions of white preachers and slave owners. It’s fascinating to consider that a highly oral people revered the Scriptures they could not read even while they rejected the oracles of co-opted preachers they could hear. One could say that African-American Christianity began with an unread Bible placed on the center of the church’s ecclesial coffee table.
Thabiti M. Anyabwile (Reviving the Black Church)
Returning to ourselves is confusing at first. It’s not as simple as listening for the voices inside of us. Because sometimes the voices inside of us, which we’ve assumed speak Truth, are just the voices of human beings who told us what to believe. Often the internal voice telling us who God is and what God approves of is not God; it’s our indoctrination. It’s an echo of the voice of a teacher, a parent, a preacher—someone who has claimed to represent God to us. Many of those people have been well meaning, and others have only sought to control us. Either way, not a single one of them has been God’s appointed spokesperson. Not a single one of them has more God in her than you do. There is no church that owns God. There is no religion that owns God. There are no gatekeepers. None of this is that easy. There is no outsourcing your faith. There is just you and God. Some of the hardest and most important work of our lives is learning to separate the voices of teachers from wisdom, propaganda from truth, fear from love and in this case: the voices of God’s self-appointed representatives from the voice of God Herself. When choosing between something you Know and something other people taught you to believe, choose what you Know. As Whitman said, “Re-examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book, and dismiss whatever insults your own soul.” Having the courage to dismiss what insults your soul is a matter of life or death.
Glennon Doyle (Untamed)
The human species is an animal species without very much variation within it, and it is idle and futile to imagine that a voyage to Tibet, say, will discover an entirely different harmony with nature or eternity. The Dalai Lama, for example, is entirely and easily recognizable to a secularist. In exactly the same way as a medieval princeling, he makes the claim not just that Tibet should be independent of Chinese hegemony—a “perfectly good” demand, if I may render it into everyday English—but that he himself is a hereditary king appointed by heaven itself. How convenient! Dissenting sects within his faith are persecuted; his one-man rule in an Indian enclave is absolute; he makes absurd pronouncements about sex and diet and, when on his trips to Hollywood fund-raisers, anoints major donors like Steven Segal and Richard Gere as holy. (Indeed, even Mr. Gere was moved to whine a bit when Mr. Segal was invested as a tulku, or person of high enlightenment. It must be annoying to be outbid at such a spiritual auction.) I will admit that the current “Dalai” or supreme lama is a man of some charm and presence, as I will admit that the present queen of England is a person of more integrity than most of her predecessors, but this does not invalidate the critique of hereditary monarchy, and the first foreign visitors to Tibet were downright appalled at the feudal domination, and hideous punishments, that kept the population in permanent serfdom to a parasitic monastic elite.
Christopher Hitchens (God Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything)
And when Aphrodite was told about Cupid`s rapid progress, she asked Zeus whether he would take her other son, Hymen, along too, since Hymen was already twenty-one & was about to be appointed as the God of Marriage, but knew precious little about love & sex, let alone, marriage. And thus Zeus took Hymen along too on his oyster hunt. But the Nymphs did not like Hymen. They shrieked & ran in all directions at his approach. But Hymen turned out to be a worthy oyster hunter. He caught the Nymphs easily enough & after catching them, he fed them with wine which his father, the God of Wine, made. And thus drugged, he harvested their oysters painlessly. And this was how all virgin Nymphs & girls got their oysters named after him, the God of Marriage.
Nicholas Chong
Whether it be because the Fall has really brought men nearer to less desirable neighbours in the spiritual world, or whether it is merely that the mood of men eager or greedy finds it easier to imagine evil, I believe that the black magic of witchcraft has been much more practical and much less poetical than the white magic of mythology. I fancy the garden of the witch has been kept much more carefully than the woodland of the nymph. I fancy the evil field has even been more fruitful than the good. To start with, some impulse, perhaps a sort of desperate impulse, drove men to the darker powers when dealing with practical problems. There was a sort of secret and perverse feeling that the darker powers would really do things; that they had no nonsense about them. And indeed that popular phase exactly expresses the point. The gods of mere mythology had a great deal of nonsense about them. They had a great deal of good nonsense about them; in the happy and hilarious sense in which we talk of the nonsense of Jabberwocky or the Land where Jumblies live. But the man consulting a demon felt as many a man has felt in consulting a detective, especially a private detective; that it was dirty work but the work would really be done. A man did not exactly go into the wood to meet a nymph; he rather went with the hope of meeting a nymph. It was an adventure rather than an assignation. But the devil really kept his appointments and even in one sense kept his promises; even if a man sometimes wished afterwards, like Macbeth, that he had broken them.
G.K. Chesterton (The Everlasting Man)
Cain and Abel represent two classes that will exist in the world till the close of time. One class avail themselves of the appointed [73] sacrifice for sin; the other venture to depend upon their own merits; theirs is a sacrifice without the virtue of divine mediation, and thus it is not able to bring man into favor with God. It is only through the merits of Jesus that our transgressions can be pardoned. Those who feel no need of the blood of Christ, who feel that without divine grace they can by their own works secure the approval of God, are making the same mistake as did Cain. If they do not accept the cleansing blood, they are under condemnation. There is no other provision made whereby they can be released from the thralldom of sin. The class of worshipers who follow the example of Cain includes by far the greater portion of the world; for nearly every false religion has been based on the same principle—that man can depend upon his own efforts for salvation. It is claimed by some that the human race is in need, not of redemption, but of development—that it can refine, elevate, and regenerate itself. As Cain thought to secure the divine favor by an offering that lacked the blood of a sacrifice, so do these expect to exalt humanity to the divine standard, independent of the atonement. The history of Cain shows what must be the results. It shows what man will become apart from Christ. Humanity has no power to regenerate itself. It does not tend upward, toward the divine, but downward, toward the satanic. Christ is our only hope. “There is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” “Neither is there salvation in any other.” Acts 4:12.
Ellen Gould White (Patriarchs and Prophets (Conflict of the Ages Book 1))
Insofar as the Church is a community of pardon it is an epiphany of the Divine Love, Agape.…This love is the key to everything, but it cannot be known, discovered or understood by rational investigation alone. It must be revealed to men in a free gift of God. It is revealed to them in the gift of love. God has willed that men should know Him not in esoteric secrets and strange philosophies, but in the announcement of the Gospel message which is the message of His love. “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you” (John 15:12). “You have not chosen me but I have chosen you, and have appointed you that you should go and bear fruit….These things I command you that you may love one another” (John 15:16–17). The love of Christians, commanded by God and carried out by them, makes them “God’s workmanship” (Ephesians 2:10, NIV).
The Merton Institute for Contemplative Living (Lent and Easter Wisdom From Thomas Merton: Daily Scripture and Prayers Together With Thomas Merton's Own Words)
What on earth did we do wrong? What harm did we inflict? What did we do to you? Who are you to judge us? Who gave you the right? Are you the representatives of mankind, or what? Who appointed you? Was it God? Yourselves? You don't care if someone loves to go bowling or shooting! You don't care if someone wants to be a doctor or a flight attendant! So why can't we love someone of the same gender? What makes you say that the way we love is wrong? Because we're not "normal"? Because we don't abide by the provisions of God? The laws of nature? Well, fuck you. What a load of bullshit. You want to create a land for God? Good. Then let's bring back the regulations on sex positions first! Don't use condoms, and only fuck in the missionary position, damn it! Since sex should only be for childbirth, and any other pleasure is against the will of God, am I right? Come to think of it, you guys are fucking disgusting. I mean, I know you all fuck doggy-style and blow each other! So I guess you're all going to hell as well! The same goes for singles who don't copulate at all! If the union of man and woman is what is "normal", singles are the most abnormal of all! You're all going to hell, too! On, and let's just kill all the ugly people, fat people, and poor people while we're at it. Then it'll be heaven on earth, with no abnormal beings! Where the normal are free to kill the abnormal! If you ask me, you uneducated, narrow-minded scumbags are the ones that degrade human nobility! You're fucking revolting! Ignorant morons! Do you feel good? Or pissed off? Mad? Then come at me! Instead of being fucking cowards, bashing someone that's all tied up. Won't it be more fun to beat up a person of color? Kill me before I infect your brains and turn all of you into homosexuals! Kill me first! Stupid scumbags!
JUNS (Dark Heaven)
One legacy of John Winthrop, John Cotton, and other Bay Colony founders is the myth of America as a land specially favored by God, a myth we still live with today regardless of political ideology. In the spring of 1686, to preserve the spirit of that America in the face of its dying, Samuel Sewall paid the printer Samuel Green to produce hundreds of copies of a pamphlet containing the farewell sermon that John Cotton delivered on the docks in Southampton, England, in April 1630 before Winthrop’s fleet set sail. The Scripture was 2 Samuel 7:10: “I will appoint a place for my people Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more; neither shall the children of wickedness afflict them any more….” By August of 1686 Samuel had donated copies of God’s Promise to His Plantation to every magistrate of the new provincial court and to every member of the local militia. Not long after arranging
Eve LaPlante (Salem Witch Judge: The Life and Repentance of Samuel Sewall)
You have something to say to me, Cassidy, say it. Or shut the fuck up.” “All right,” Jules said. “I will.” He took a deep breath. Exhaled. “Okay, see, I, well, I love you. Very, very much, and . . .” Where to go from here . . .? Except, his plain-spoken words earned him not just a glance but Max’s sudden full and complete attention. Which was a little alarming. But it was the genuine concern in Max’s eyes that truly caught Jules off-guard. Max actually thought . . . Jules laughed his surprise. “Oh! No, not like that. I meant it, you know, in a totally platonic, non-gay way.” Jules saw comprehension and relief on Max’s face. The man was tired if he was letting such basic emotions show. “Sorry.” Max even smiled. “I just . . .” He let out a burst of air. “I mean, talk about making things even more complicated . . .” It was amazing. Max hadn’t recoiled in horror at the idea. His concern had been for Jules, about potentially hurting his tender feelings. And even now, he wasn’t trying to turn it all into a bad joke. And he claimed they weren’t friends. Jules felt his throat tighten. “You can’t know,” he told his friend quietly, “how much I appreciate your acceptance and respect.” “My father was born in India,” Max told him, “in 1930. His mother was white—American. His father was not just Indian, but lower caste. The intolerance he experienced both there and later, even in America, made him a . . . very bitter, very hard, very, very unhappy man.” He glanced at Jules again. “I know personality plays into it, and maybe you’re just stronger than he was, but . . . People get knocked down all the time. They can either stay there, wallow in it, or . . . Do what you’ve done—what you do. So yeah. I respect you more than you know.” Holy shit. Weeping was probably a bad idea, so Jules grabbed onto the alternative. He made a joke. “I wasn’t aware that you even had a father. I mean, rumors going around the office have you arriving via flying saucer—” “I would prefer not to listen to aimless chatter all night long,” Max interrupted him. “So if you’ve made your point . . .?” Ouch. “Okay,” Jules said. “I’m so not going to wallow in that. Because I do have a point. See, I said what I said because I thought I’d take the talk-to-an-eight-year-old approach with you. You know, tell you how much I love you and how great you are in part one of the speech—” “Speech.” Max echoed. “Because part two is heavily loaded with the silent-but-implied ‘you are such a freaking idiot.’” “Ah, Christ,” Max muttered. “So, I love you,” Jules said again, “in a totally buddy-movie way, and I just want to say that I also really love working for you, and I hope to God you’ll come back so I can work for you again. See, I love the fact that you’re my leader not because you were appointed by some suit, but because you earned very square inch of that gorgeous corner office. I love you because you’re not just smart, you’re open-minded—you’re willing to talk to people who have a different point of view, and when they speak, you’re willing to listen. Like right now, for instance. You’re listening, right?” “No.” “Liar.” Jules kept going. “You know, the fact that so many people would sell their grandmother to become a part of your team is not an accident. Sir, you’re beyond special—and your little speech to me before just clinched it. You scare us to death because we’re afraid we won’t be able to live up to your high standards. But your back is strong, you always somehow manage to carry us with you even when we falter. “Some people don’t see that; they don’t really get you—all they know is they would charge into hell without hesitation if you gave the order to go. But see, what I know is that you’d be right there, out in front—they’d have to run to keep up with you. You never flinch. You never hesitate. You never rest.
Suzanne Brockmann (Breaking Point (Troubleshooters, #9))
According to the traditional philosophy of the Magicians, every man is a unique autonomous center of individual consciousness, energy, and will—a soul, in a word. Like a star shining and existing by its own inward light, it pursues its way in the star-spangled heavens, solitary, uninterfered with, except in so far as its heavenly course is gravitationally modified by the presence, near or far, of other stars. Since in the vast stellar spaces seldom are there conflicts between the celestial bodies, unless one happens to stray from its appointed course—a very rare occurrence—so in the realms of humankind there would lie no chaos, little conflict, and no mutual disturbance were each individual content to be grounded in the reality of his own high consciousness, aware of his ideal nature In the his true purpose in life, and eager to pursue the road which he must follow. Because men have strayed from the dynamic sources inhering within themselves and the universe, and have forsaken their true spiritual wills, because they have divorced themselves from the celestial essences, betrayed by a mess of more sickly pottage than ever Jacob did sell to Esau, the world in this day presents a people with so hopeless an aspect, and a humanity impressed with so despondent a mien. Ignorance of the course of the celestial orbit, and the significance of that orbit inscribed in the skies forever, is the root which is at the bottom of universal dissatisfaction, unhappiness, and race-nostalgia. And because of this the living soul cries for help to the dead, and the creature to a silent God. Of all this crying there comes usually—nothing. The lifting up of the hands in supplication brings no inkling of salvation. The frantic gnashing of teeth results but in mute despair and loss of vital energy. Redemption is only from within and is wrought out by the soul itself with suffering and through time, with much endeavor and strain of the spirit.
Israel Regardie (The Tree of Life: An Illustrated Study in Magic)
I am sure that the Roman emperors didn’t have prayer to God in their schools. But then, the early Christians didn’t seem to care what Caligula or Claudius or Nero did. How could any emperor stop God? How, in fact, could the demons of hell make headway when God’s people prayed and called upon his name? Impossible! In the New Testament we don’t see Peter or John wringing their hands and saying, “Oh, what are we going to do? Caligula’s bisexual … he wants to appoint his horse to the Roman Senate … what a terrible model of leadership! How are we going to respond to this outrage?” Let’s not play games with ourselves. Let’s not divert attention away from the weak prayer life of our own churches. In Acts 4, when the apostles were unjustly arrested, imprisoned, and threatened, they didn’t call for a protest; they didn’t reach for some political leverage. Instead, they headed to a prayer meeting. Soon the place was vibrating with the power of the Holy Spirit (vv. 23–31).
Jim Cymbala (Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire)
Although I have afflicted you, . . . I will afflict you no more. (Nahum 1:12) There is a limit to our affliction. God sends it and then removes it. Do you complain, saying, “When will this end?” May we quietly wait and patiently endure the will of the Lord till He comes. Our Father takes away the rod when His purpose in using it is fully accomplished. If the affliction is sent to test us so that our words would glorify God, it will only end once He has caused us to testify to His praise and honor. In fact, we would not want the difficulty to depart until God has removed from us all the honor we can yield to Him. Today things may become “completely calm” (Matt. 8:26). Who knows how soon these raging waves will give way to a sea of glass with seagulls sitting on the gentle swells? After a long ordeal, the threshing tool is on its hook, and the wheat has been gathered into the barn. Before much time has passed, we may be just as happy as we are sorrowful now. It is not difficult for the Lord to turn night into day. He who sends the clouds can just as easily clear the skies. Let us be encouraged—things are better down the road. Let us sing God’s praises in anticipation of things to come. Charles H. Spurgeon “The Lord of the harvest” (Luke 10:2) is not always threshing us. His trials are only for a season, and the showers soon pass. “Weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning” (Ps. 30:5). “Our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all” (2 Cor. 4:17). Trials do serve their purpose. Even the fact that we face a trial proves there is something very precious to our Lord in us, or else He would not spend so much time and energy on us. Christ would not test us if He did not see the precious metal of faith mingled with the rocky core of our nature, and it is to refine us into purity and beauty that He forces us through the fiery ordeal. Be patient, O sufferer! The result of the Refiner’s fire will more than compensate for our trials, once we see the “eternal glory that far outweighs them all.” Just to hear His commendation, “Well done” (Matt. 25:21); to be honored before the holy angels; to be glorified in Christ, so that I may reflect His glory back to Him—ah! that will be more than enough reward for all my trials. from Tried by Fire Just as the weights of a grandfather clock, or the stabilizers in a ship, are necessary for them to work properly, so are troubles to the soul. The sweetest perfumes are obtained only through tremendous pressure, the fairest flowers grow on the most isolated and snowy peaks, the most beautiful gems are those that have suffered the longest at the jeweler’s wheel, and the most magnificent statues have endured the most blows from the chisel. All of these, however, are subject to God’s law. Nothing happens that has not been appointed with consummate care and foresight. from Daily Devotional Commentary
Jim Reimann (Streams in the Desert: 366 Daily Devotional Readings)
First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, 2for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. 3This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, 4who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 5For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man [1] Christ Jesus, 6who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time. 7For this I was appointed a preacher and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying), a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth. 8I desire then that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarreling; 9likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, 10but with what is
Anonymous (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version (without Cross-References))
Andrew Murray was suffering from a terribly painful back, the result of an injury he had incurred years before. One morning while he was eating breakfast in his room, his hostess told him of a woman downstairs who was in great trouble, and wanted to know if he had any advice for her. Murray handed her a paper he had been writing on and said, “Give her this advice I’m writing down for myself. It may be that she’ll find it helpful.” This is what was written: In time of trouble, say, “First, He brought me here. It is by His will I am in this strait place; in that I will rest.” Next, “He will keep me here in His love, and give me grace in this trial to behave as His child.” Then say, “He will make the trial a blessing, teaching me lessons He intends me to learn, and working in me the grace He means to bestow.” And last, say, “In His good time He can bring me out again. How and when, He knows.” Therefore, say, “I am here (1) by God’s appointment, (2) in His keeping, (3) under His training, (4) for His time.
David Jeremiah (What to Do When You Don't Know What to Do)
As a black man Al, who went through the Civil rights fight in the 60s just like you did, and saw the first freedom bus burn in my home town of Anniston, Alabama, on May 14, 1961; I hated Dr. King for his non-violent philosophy. That did not change until I became a Christian later in life. Then I understood God’s biblical truth of love your enemy and do good to those who hate and persecute you. I think I have the right to tell you this sir; I think the likes of you and Jesse Jackson have done more damage to the black race than any white man will ever accomplish. You see as long as you can produce an ethnicity with a victim mentality to keep them in poverty, as the two of you get richer – you know like poverty pimps – and convince them that it is the white man’s fault because he has his boot on their necks, and as long as you teach our beautiful black women that there is a government out there to be their baby’s daddy, the two of you win. You are the self-proclaimed, appointed leaders of the black people. How we as black people have swallowed the lie that we have to have certain black leaders to get on the government teat escapes me.
Ken Hutcherson
LEICESTER, Jan. 17th, 1793. "DEAR AND HONOURED FATHER,—The importance of spending our time for God alone, is the principal theme of the gospel. I beseech you, brethren, says Paul, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable, which is your reasonable service. To be devoted like a sacrifice to holy uses, is the great business of a christian, pursuant to these requisitions. I consider myself as devoted to the service of God alone, and now I am to realise my professions. I am appointed to go to Bengal, in the East Indies, a missionary to the Hindoos. I shall have a colleague who has been there five or six years already, and who understands their language. They are the most mild and inoffensive people in all the world, but are enveloped in the greatest superstition, and in the grossest ignorance...I hope, dear father, you may be enabled to surrender me up to the Lord for the most arduous, honourable, and important work that ever any of the sons of men were called to engage in. I have many sacrifices to make. I must part with a beloved family, and a number of most affectionate friends. Never did I see such sorrow manifested as reigned through our place of worship last Lord's-day. But I have set my hand to the plough.—I remain, your dutiful son, "WILLIAM CAREY.
George Smith (The Life of William Carey)
She well remembered the terror she felt when seeing for the first time names like Przemysl and Rzeszow, and how she had turned to Wiktor for help. “Look at this,” she said petulantly, pointing to Przemysl. “How in the world do you pronounce it?” “Quite simple,” he said, repeating it several times. “Shemish.” “Now wait! You can’t tell me that with all those letters, it comes out Shemish.” “It does. You can hear for yourself. Shemish.” “What happens to the P at the beginning and the L at the end?” “In strict accuracy, it ought to be P’shemish’l, and if you listen with extra attention you may hear the muffled P and the final L. But mostly we just say Shemish.” He broke into laughter, and Marjorie thought he was ridiculing her. Not at all: “I was remembering how much trouble it gives the Austrian officers who speak only German. They go home to their families and announce proudly, ‘I’ve been appointed lieutenant commander of our big base at Przemysl,’ and however he pronounces it, that first time becomes the accepted name in that man’s family. Shemish he never says.” He laughed again. “How would you say it, Marjo?” “Per-zem-y-sil,” she said firmly, “just as God intended it to be pronounced.” “Never try to reason things out in Poland,” he said reassuringly. “Just accept it as Shemish,” but she resolved to avoid the word whenever possible.
James A. Michener (Poland)
November 3 “For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.” Habakkuk 2:3 MERCY may seem slow, but it is sure. The Lord in unfailing wisdom has appointed a time for the outgoings of his gracious power, and God’s time is the best time. We are in a hurry; the vision of the blessing excites our desire, and hastens our longings; but the Lord will keep his appointments. He never is before his time; he never is behind. God’s Word is here spoken of as a living thing which will speak, and will come. It is never a dead letter, as we are tempted to fear when we have long watched for its fulfilment. The living Word is on the way from the living God, and though it may seem to linger, it is not in reality doing so. God’s train is not behind time. It is only a matter of patience, and we shall soon see for ourselves the faithfulness of the Lord. No promise of his shall fail; “it will not lie.” No promise of his will be lost in silence; “it shall speak.” What comfort it will speak to the believing ear! No promise of his shall need to be renewed like a bill which could not be paid on the day in which it fell due – “it will not tarry.” Come, my soul, canst thou not wait for thy God? Rest in him and be still in unutterable peacefulness.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon (The Chequebook of the Bank of Faith: Precious Promises Arranged for Daily Use with Brief Comments)
Now this posterity of Seth continued to esteem God as the Lord of the universe, and to have an entire regard to virtue, for seven generations; but in process of time they were perverted, and forsook the practices of their forefathers; and did neither pay those honors to God which were appointed them, nor had they any concern to do justice towards men. But for what degree of zeal they had formerly shown for virtue, they now showed by their actions a double degree of wickedness, whereby they made God to be their enemy. For many angels (11) of God accompanied with women, and begat sons that proved unjust, and despisers of all that was good, on account of the confidence they had in their own strength; for the tradition is, that these men did what resembled the acts of those whom the Grecians call giants. But Noah was very uneasy at what they did; and being displeased at their conduct, persuaded them to change their dispositions and their acts for the better: but seeing they did not yield to him, but were slaves to their wicked pleasures, he was afraid they would kill him, together with his wife and children, and those they had married; so he departed out of that land. 2. Now God loved this man for his righteousness: yet he not only condemned those other men for their wickedness, but determined to destroy the whole race of mankind, and to make another race that should be pure from wickedness;
Flavius Josephus
The traditional Roman wedding was a splendid affair designed to dramatize the bride’s transfer from the protection of her father’s household gods to those of her husband. Originally, this literally meant that she passed from the authority of her father to her husband, but at the end of the Republic women achieved a greater degree of independence, and the bride remained formally in the care of a guardian from her blood family. In the event of financial and other disagreements, this meant that her interests were more easily protected. Divorce was easy, frequent and often consensual, although husbands were obliged to repay their wives’ dowries. The bride was dressed at home in a white tunic, gathered by a special belt which her husband would later have to untie. Over this she wore a flame-colored veil. Her hair was carefully dressed with pads of artificial hair into six tufts and held together by ribbons. The groom went to her father’s house and, taking her right hand in his, confirmed his vow of fidelity. An animal (usually a ewe or a pig) was sacrificed in the atrium or a nearby shrine and an Augur was appointed to examine the entrails and declare the auspices favorable. The couple exchanged vows after this and the marriage was complete. A wedding banquet, attended by the two families, concluded with a ritual attempt to drag the bride from her mother’s arms in a pretended abduction. A procession was then formed which led the bride to her husband’s house, holding the symbols of housewifely duty, a spindle and distaff. She took the hand of a child whose parents were living, while another child, waving a hawthorn torch, walked in front to clear the way. All those in the procession laughed and made obscene jokes at the happy couple’s expense. When the bride arrived at her new home, she smeared the front door with oil and lard and decorated it with strands of wool. Her husband, who had already arrived, was waiting inside and asked for her praenomen or first name. Because Roman women did not have one and were called only by their family name, she replied in a set phrase: “Wherever you are Caius, I will be Caia.” She was then lifted over the threshold. The husband undid the girdle of his wife’s tunic, at which point the guests discreetly withdrew. On the following morning she dressed in the traditional costume of married women and made a sacrifice to her new household gods. By the late Republic this complicated ritual had lost its appeal for sophisticated Romans and could be replaced by a much simpler ceremony, much as today many people marry in a registry office. The man asked the woman if she wished to become the mistress of a household (materfamilias), to which she answered yes. In turn, she asked him if he wished to become paterfamilias, and on his saying he did the couple became husband and wife.
Anthony Everitt (Cicero: The Life and Times of Rome's Greatest Politician)
king contributed from his own possessions for the morning and evening burnt offerings and for the burnt offerings on the Sabbaths, at the New Moons and at the appointed festivals as written in the Law of the LORD. 4He ordered the people living in Jerusalem to give the portion due the priests and Levites so they could devote themselves to the Law of the LORD. 5As soon as the order went out, the Israelites generously gave the firstfruits of their grain, new wine, olive oil and honey and all that the fields produced. They brought a great amount, a tithe of everything. 6The people of Israel and Judah who lived in the towns of Judah also brought a tithe of their herds and flocks and a tithe of the holy things dedicated to the LORD their God, and they piled them in heaps. 7They began doing this in the third month and finished in the seventh month. 8When Hezekiah and his officials came and saw the heaps, they praised the LORD and blessed his people Israel. 9Hezekiah asked the priests and Levites about the heaps; 10and Azariah the chief priest, from the family of Zadok, answered, “Since the people began to bring their contributions to the temple of the LORD, we have had enough to eat and plenty to spare, because the LORD has blessed his people, and this great amount is left over.” 11Hezekiah gave orders to prepare storerooms in the temple of the LORD, and this was done. 12Then they faithfully brought in the contributions, tithes and dedicated gifts.
Anonymous (The One Year Chronological Bible NIV)
Is Christian ethics merely a specific set of Christian answers to the question of good and evil, right and wrong? To make it no more than this is to forget that man’s fall was a fall into the knowledge of good and evil, reinforced by the inexorable knowledge of a condemning law, and that man’s restoration in Christ is a restoration to freedom and grace, to a love that needs no law since it knows and does only what is in accord with love and with God. To imprison ethics in the realm of division, of good and evil, right and wrong, is to condemn it to sterility, and rob it of its real reason for existing, which is love. Love cannot be reduced to one virtue among many others prescribed by ethical imperatives. When love is only “a virtue” among many, man forgets that “God is love” and becomes incapable of that all-embracing love by which we secretly begin to know God as our Creator and Redeemer - who has saved us from the limitations of a purely restrictive and aimless existence “under a law.” So Bonhoeffer says very rightly: “In the knowledge of good and evil man does not understand himself in the reality of the destiny appointed in his origin, but rather in his own possibilities, his possibility of being good or evil. He knows himself now as something apart from God, outside God, and this means that he now knows only himself and no longer knows God at all…. The knowledge of good and evil is therefore separation from God. Only against God can man know good and evil.
Thomas Merton (Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander (Image Classic))
people by My messages and My words. So take hold of what I give thee and be of the grateful. 145  And We ordaineda for him in the tablets admonition of every kind and clear explanation of all things. So take hold of them with firmness and enjoin thy people to take hold of what is best thereof. I shall show you the abode of the transgressors.b 145a. Kataba means He (God) prescribed, appointed or ordained and made obligatory (LL). The words admonition of every kind and explanation of all things cannot be taken generally, but are limited by the requirements of the time in which Moses appeared. 145b. The meaning is that a time will come to the Israelites when they will become transgressors, i.e. they will not keep the Divine commandments. 146  I shall turn away from My messages those who are unjustly proud in the earth. And if they see every sign, they will not believe in it; and if they see the way of rectitude, they take it not for a way; and if they see the way of error, they take it for a way. This is because they reject Our messages and are heedless of them. 147  And those who reject Our messages and the meeting of the Hereafter — their deeds are fruitless. Can they be rewarded except for what they do? SECTION 18: Israelites worship a calf 148  And Moses’ people made of their ornaments a calf after him — a (lifeless) body,a having a lowing sound. Could they not see that it spoke not to them, nor guided them in the way? They took it (for worship) and they were unjust. 148a. The word jasad means a body, as well as red or intensely yellow. The former meaning is the one generally adopted by the commentators, the significance
Anonymous (Holy Quran)
It is possible for a man to know whether God has called him or not, and he may know it too beyond a doubt. He may know it as surely as if he read it with his own eyes; nay, he may know it more surely than that, for if I read a thing with my eyes, even my eyes may deceived me, the testimony of sense may be false, but the testimony of the Spirit must be true. We have the witness of the Spirit within, bearing witness with our spirits that we are born of God. There is such a thing on earth as an infallible assurance of our election. Let a man once get that, and it will anoint his head with fresh oil, it will clothe him with the white garment of praise, and put the son of the angel into his mouth. Happy, happy man! who is fully assured of his interest in the covenant of grace, in the blood of atonement, and in the glories of heaven! Such men there are here this very day. Let them 'rejoice in the Lord alway, and again I say rejoice.' What would some of you give if you could arrive at this assurance? Mark, if you anxiously desire to know, you may know. If your heart pants to read its title clear it shall do so ere long. No man ever desired Christ in his heart with a living and longing desire, who did not find Him sooner or later. If thou hast a desire, God has given it thee. If thou pantest, and criest, and groanest after Christ, even this is His gift; bless Him for it. Thank Him for little grace, and ask Him for great grace. He has given thee hope, ask for faith; and when He gives thee faith, ask for assurance; and when thou gettest assurance, ask for full assurance; and when thou hast obtained full assurance, ask for enjoyment; and when thou hast enjoyment, ask for glory itself; and He shall surely give it thee in His own appointed season.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon (The Complete Works of Charles Spurgeon - Volume 22, Sermons)
Endorsement of the ordination of women is not the final step in the process, however. If we look at the denominations that approved women’s ordination from 1956–1976, we find that several of them, such as the United Methodist Church and the United Presbyterian Church (now called the Presbyterian Church–USA), have large contingents pressing for (a) the endorsement of homosexual conduct as morally valid and (b) the approval of homosexual ordination. In fact, the Episcopal Church on August 5, 2003, approved the appointment of an openly homosexual bishop.16 In more liberal denominations such as these, a predictable sequence has been seen (though so far only the Episcopal Church has followed the sequence to point 7): 1. abandoning biblical inerrancy 2. endorsing the ordination of women 3. abandoning the Bible’s teaching on male headship in marriage 4. excluding clergy who are opposed to women’s ordination 5. approving homosexual conduct as morally valid in some cases 6. approving homosexual ordination 7. ordaining homosexuals to high leadership positions in the denomination17 I am not arguing that all egalitarians are liberals. Some denominations have approved women’s ordination for other reasons, such as a long historical tradition and a strong emphasis on gifting by the Holy Spirit as the primary requirement for ministry (as in the Assemblies of God), or because of the dominant influence of an egalitarian leader and a high priority on relating effectively to the culture (as in the Willow Creek Association). But it is unquestionable that theological liberalism leads to the endorsement of women’s ordination. While not all egalitarians are liberals, all liberals are egalitarians. There is no theologically liberal denomination or seminary in the United States today that opposes women’s ordination. Liberalism and the approval of women’s ordination go hand in hand.
Wayne Grudem (Evangelical Feminism: A New Path to Liberalism?)
He that is good for making excuses is seldom good for anything else. The person who really wants to do something finds a way; the other person finds an excuse. If you strip away all the excuses we dish up to God day after day, you’ll find they all come down to this: laziness. If you’re serious about making your one-on-one time with God a priority, you’ve got to be willing to tackle that ugly D word: discipline. Discipline is an integral part of being committed to some form of daily, routine encounter with God. Will you willingly ignore His invitation, throwing your alarm clock across the room, opting for more sleep? Will your good intentions get lost in a flurry of other important tasks? Or will you plan ahead, making sure you don’t miss the opportunity of a lifetime — make that eternity — and give your appointed time with your Heavenly Father the priority it deserves? Do you sincerely desire a personal, intimate relationship with your Lord?When we say we love God, yet make no time for Him in our lives, well—what kind of love is that? I ask myself if there’s anything more important than spending a few moments with my Jesus. The answer is always the same: nothing. Nothing is more important. I’m responsible for my own spiritual growth. Tragedy will always be a part of life on earth. We may not understand why God allows such things to happen. But we have a choice. Either we can turn our backs on God, even blame Him for these unspeakable heartaches, or we can hold on. We can refuse to let go, even against all odds. Even when our faith is tested beyond our human abilities. Even when nothing makes sense any more. We can hold on because God is our only hope. To say that “prayer changes things” is not as close to the truth as saying, “Prayer changes me and then I change things.” What will it take for you to go deep with God? All those silly excuses aside, what’s stopping you?
Diane Moody (Confessions of a Prayer Slacker)
Jung’s remarks about how in North Africa he “felt cast back many centuries to an infinitely more naïve world of adolescents who were preparing, with the aid of a slender knowledge of the Koran, to emerge from their original state of twilight consciousness” may seem politically incorrect from our oversensitive perspective, but they highlight the core insight of the trip. Although Jung knew a great deal about mythology and mythological thinking, his own thinking was decidedly Western and rational—he described himself as a “thorough Westerner”26—and in many ways, Jung was a typical “left-brainer,” with his detestation of “fantasy,” his formality and punctuality, his precision and need to be “scientific.” In his travels in North Africa, and later Taos and Central Africa, Jung was looking for signs of a consciousness not as differentiated from the unconscious matrix—what in the Seven Sermons he called “the Pleroma”—as ours, with its sharp distinction between conscious and unconscious. What Jung found in places such as Tunis, Sousse, Sfax, and the oasis city of Tozeur was a completely different sense of time. Coming from the land of cuckoo clocks and appointment books, this must have been a shock. Jung had entered a “dream of a static, age-old existence,” a kind of perpetual now, a condition associated with the right brain, which lacks a sense of time; there was none of the incessant activity that characterized even a relatively small city like Zürich. Jung enjoyed the contrast, which gave him an opportunity to entertain criticisms of modernity, a practice that would become something of a habit in later years, but he also felt this timelessness was threatened. Thinking of his pocket watch, “the symbol of Europe’s accelerated tempo,” Jung worried that the “god of time” and its demon, progress, would soon “chop into bits and pieces”—hours, minutes, seconds—the “duration” he sensed here and which was the “closest thing to eternity.
Gary Lachman (Jung the Mystic: The Esoteric Dimensions of Carl Jung's Life & Teachings)
I’ve only an hour,” Colin said as he attached the safety tip to his foil. “I have an appointment this afternoon.” “No matter,” Benedict replied, lunging forward a few times to loosen up the muscles in his leg. He hadn’t fenced in some time; the sword felt good in his hand. He drew back and touched the tip to the floor, letting the blade bend slightly. “It won’t take more than an hour to best you.” Colin rolled his eyes before he drew down his mask. Benedict walked to the center of the room. “Are you ready?” “Not quite,” Colin replied, following him. Benedict lunged again. “I said I wasn’t ready!” Colin hollered as he jumped out of the way. “You’re too slow,” Benedict snapped. Colin cursed under his breath, then added a louder, “Bloody hell,” for good measure. “What’s gotten into you?” “Nothing,” Benedict nearly snarled. “Why would you say so?” Colin took a step backward until they were a suitable distance apart to start the match. “Oh, I don’t know,” he intoned, sarcasm evident. “I suppose it could be because you nearly took my head off.” “I’ve a tip on my blade.” “And you were slashing like you were using a sabre,” Colin shot back. Benedict gave a hard smile. “It’s more fun that way.” “Not for my neck.” Colin passed his sword from hand to hand as he flexed and stretched his fingers. He paused and frowned. “You sure you have a foil there?” Benedict scowled. “For the love of God, Colin, I would never use a real weapon.” “Just making sure,” Colin muttered, touching his neck lightly. “Are you ready?” Benedict nodded and bent his knees. “Regular rules,” Colin said, assuming a fencer’s crouch. “No slashing.” Benedict gave him a curt nod. “En garde!” Both men raised their right arms, twisting their wrists until their palms were up, foils gripped in their fingers. “Is that new?” Colin suddenly asked, eyeing the handle of Benedict’s foil with interest. Benedict cursed at the loss of his concentration. “Yes, it’s new,” he bit off. “I prefer an Italian grip.” Colin stepped back, completely losing his fencing posture as he looked at his own foil, with a less elaborate French grip. “Might I borrow it some time? I wouldn’t mind seeing if—” “Yes!” Benedict snapped, barely resisting the urge to advance and lunge that very second. “Will you get back en garde?” Colin gave him a lopsided smile, and Benedict just knew that he had asked about his grip simply to annoy him. “As you wish,” Colin murmured, assuming position again.
Julia Quinn (An Offer From a Gentleman (Bridgertons, #3))
It is the purpose of both God and the devil to provide you with the answers to these key questions.  If Satan is able to establish his images of identity and destiny in your life, he then has set up a system of governing your life that more or less runs itself and requires very little maintenance or service on his part. It is an effective scheme of destruction in your life. I believe that it has always been God’s intention to impart, especially at specific junctures in life, His message of identity and destiny.  He has appointed special agents on this earth to ensure that His message of identity and destiny is revealed.  These agents are called PARENTS.  Their primary job is to make sure that children receive God’s message of identity and destiny throughout their growing-up years. Satan’s purpose is to access these very agents of God, the parents, and to impart his message of identity and destiny.  Many times parents are unwittingly used to impart the devil’s message rather than God’s. SATAN’S MESSAGE VS. GOD’S MESSAGE What type of message does the devil want to reveal regarding identity and destiny?  His message is something along these lines.  IDENTITY: “You are worthless.  You aren’t even supposed to be here.  You are a mistake.  Something is drastically wrong with you.  You are a ‘nobody.’” DESTINY: “You have no purpose.  You are a total failure.  You’ll never be a success.  You are inadequate.  You are not equipped to accomplish the job.  Nothing ever works out for you, etc..” I once heard a woman say, “It’s as if someone dropped me off on the planet forty some years ago, and I’ve been trying to make my way the best I could ever since.  But deep inside, I don’t feel as though I belong here, and I’ve been waiting for that someone to come back and pick me up.”  God never intended for anyone to feel that he doesn’t belong.  That is Satan’s message. God's message of identity and destiny is something like this:  IDENTITY:  “To Me you are very valuable and are worth the life of Jesus Christ.  You are a `somebody.’  You do belong here.  Before the foundation of the earth, I planned for you.  You were no mistake.” DESTINY:  “You are destined to a great purpose on this earth.  I placed you here for a purpose.  You are a success as a person and are completely adequate and suited to carry out My purpose.  Set your vision high, and allow Me to complete great accomplishments in your life.” JOE’S STORY Joe was a well dressed, successful business man in his late thirties when I first met him.  He had come to a weekend “FROM CURSE TO BLESSING” seminar.  As we moved into the small-group ministry time, Joe began to share, somewhat sheepishly, about the tremendous problem that anger had caused him in his life.  “Anger causes me to embarrass myself, and
Craig Hill (The Ancient Paths)
Sending out the Disciples Luke 10 1: AFTER THESE THINGS THE LORD APPOINTED OTHER SEVENTY DISCIPLES AND HE SENT THEM TWO AND TWO BEFORE HIS FACE INTO EVERY CITY AND PLACE; WHITHER HE HIMSELF WOULD COME God is here and now. God is not something outside you, God is within you. God is the innermost core of existence. That is what Jesus means with: "Repent, for the kingdom of God is near". God is not separate from the creation. He is one with the creation. When you understand this, your life becomes a prayer. When you understand this, you will understand that existence is a family. You will understand that life is togetherness. When we discover our authentic inner being, the kingdom of God, we understand that everybody is a messenger. We discover that the divine source expands, and we spread love to all with whom we interact. Jesus sent out his disciples two and two, so that they did not have to go alone. They went two and two in friendship, in love, in trust, so that they could help each other. THEREFORE SAID HE UNTO THEM, THE HARVEST TRULY IS GREAT, BUT THE LABORERS ARE FEW The harvest is great, but there are not many laborers. People are deaf and blind. Somebody like Jesus comes, and you do not want to listen. It has always been like this. Rather than listening to Jesus, people get so jealous of Jesus, that they crucified him. Only very aware and understanding people will listen to Jesus. GO YOUR WAYS: BEHOLD I SEND YOU FORTH AS LAMBS AMONG THE WOLVES Jesus knows that he is sending his disciples into a dangerous world. People will not understand what they say, they do not want to listen, and they cling to their ideas and their tradition. Jesus knows that trust is to be attacked. He knows that love is to be attacked. CARRY NEITHER PURSE, NOR SHOES, AND SALUTE NO MAN BY THE WAY AND INTO WHATSOVER HOUSE YE ENTER, FIRST SAY, PEACE BE TO THIS HOUSE Jesus says that the love and the truth can create troubles for you. "Do not carry purse, do not wear shoes, go barefoot. Do not salute no man on the road". Be ordinary, be simple, be egoless. Jesus says bring peace to the house, because only in that peaceful milieu can the message can delievered. Create a spiritual vibration of peace, spread the feeling of peace, and if you are really feeling it, it will spread. When somebody comes to see you, settle within yourself, Become silent. And you will see a change in the man. We are joined together by our hearts. We exist as parts of one heart. That heart is God. If you create a feeling of peace, it will spread around you. If your gift of peace is accepted, it will be good. If it is not accepted, if you gift is rejcted, it is also good. The peace will still shower on you. HE THAT HEARETH YOU, HEARETH ME, AND HE THAT DESPISETH YOU, DESPISETH ME: AND HE THAT DESPISETH ME DESPISETH HIM THAT SENT ME Jesus says: If people hear you, they hear me. And if they hear me, they hear the one who has sent me.
Swami Dhyan Giten (The Way, the Truth and the Life: On Jesus Christ, the Man, the Mystic and the Rebel)
Notice that Jesus knows exactly who he is asking to lead his community: a sinner. As all Christian leaders have been, are, and will be, Peter is imperfect. And as all good Christian leaders are, Peter is well aware of his imperfections. The disciples too know who they are getting as their leader. They will not need—or be tempted—to elevate Peter into some semi-divine figure; they have seen him at his worst. Jesus forgives Peter because he loves him, because he knows that his friend needs forgiveness to be free, and because he knows that the leader of his church will need to forgive others many times. And Jesus forgives totally, going beyond what would be expected—going so far as to establish Peter as head of the church.11 It would have made more earthly sense for Jesus to appoint another, non-betraying apostle to head his church. Why give the one who denied him this important leadership role? Why elevate the manifestly sinful one over the rest? One reason may be to show the others what forgiveness is. In this way Jesus embodies the Father in the Parable of the Prodigal Son, who not only forgives the son, but also, to use a fishing metaphor, goes overboard. Jesus goes beyond forgiving and setting things right. A contemporary equivalent would be a tenured professor stealing money from a university, apologizing, being forgiven by the board of trustees, and then being hired as the school’s president. People would find this extraordinary—and it is. In response, Peter will ultimately offer his willingness to lay down his life for Christ. But on the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he can’t know the future. He can’t understand fully what he is agreeing to. Feed your sheep? Which sheep? The Twelve? The disciples? The whole world? This is often the case for us too. Even if we accept the call we can be confused about where God is leading us. When reporters used to ask the former Jesuit superior general Pedro Arrupe where the Jesuit Order was going, he would say, “I don’t know!” Father Arrupe was willing to follow, even if he didn’t know precisely what God had in mind. Peter says yes to the unknowable, because the question comes from Jesus. Both Christ’s forgiveness and Peter’s response show us love. God’s love is limitless, unconditional, radical. And when we have experienced that love, we can share it. The ability to forgive and to accept forgiveness is an absolute requirement of the Christian life. Conversely, the refusal to forgive leads ineluctably to spiritual death. You may know families in which vindictiveness acts like a cancer, slowly eating away at love. You may know people whose marriages have been destroyed by a refusal to forgive. One of my friends described a couple he knew as “two scorpions in a jar,” both eagerly waiting to sting the other with barbs and hateful comments. We see the communal version of this in countries torn by sectarian violence, where a climate of mutual recrimination and mistrust leads only to increasing levels of pain. The Breakfast by the Sea shows that Jesus lived the forgiveness he preached. Jesus knew that forgiveness is a life-giving force that reconciles, unites, and empowers. The Gospel by the Sea is a gospel of forgiveness, one of the central Christian virtues. It is the radical stance of Jesus, who, when faced with the one who denied him, forgave him and appointed him head of the church, and the man who, in agony on the Cross, forgave his executioners. Forgiveness is a gift to the one who forgives, because it frees from resentment; and to the one who needs forgiveness, because it frees from guilt. Forgiveness is the liberating force that allowed Peter to cast himself into the water at the sound of Jesus’s voice, and it is the energy that gave him a voice with which to testify to his belief in Christ.
James Martin (Jesus: A Pilgrimage)