Obey Your Man Quotes

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What can you say to a man who tells you he prefers obeying God rather than men, and that as a result he's certain he'll go to heaven if he cuts your throat?
Voltaire (Philosophical Dictionary)
I love you,' Buttercup said. 'I know this must come as something of a surprise to you, since all I've ever done is scorn you and degrade you and taunt you, but I have loved you for several hours now, and every second, more. I thought an hour ago that I loved you more than any woman has ever loved a man, but a half hour after that I knew that what I felt before was nothing compared to what I felt then. But ten minutes after that, I understood that my previous love was a puddle compared to the high seas before a storm. Your eyes are like that, did you know? Well they are. How many minutes ago was I? Twenty? Had I brought my feelings up to then? It doesn't matter.' Buttercup still could not look at him. The sun was rising behind her now; she could feel the heat on her back, and it gave her courage. 'I love you so much more now than twenty minutes ago that there cannot be comparison. I love you so much more now then when you opened your hovel door, there cannot be comparison. There is no room in my body for anything but you. My arms love you, my ears adore you, my knees shake with blind affection. My mind begs you to ask it something so it can obey. Do you want me to follow you for the rest of your days? I will do that. Do you want me to crawl? I will crawl. I will be quiet for you or sing for you, or if you are hungry, let me bring you food, or if you have thirst and nothing will quench it but Arabian wine, I will go to Araby, even though it is across the world, and bring a bottle back for your lunch. Anything there is that I can do for you, I will do for you; anything there is that I cannot do, I will learn to do. I know I cannot compete with the Countess in skills or wisdom or appeal, and I saw the way she looked at you. And I saw the way you looked at her. But remember, please, that she is old and has other interests, while I am seventeen and for me there is only you. Dearest Westley--I've never called you that before, have I?--Westley, Westley, Westley, Westley, Westley,--darling Westley, adored Westley, sweet perfect Westley, whisper that I have a chance to win your love.' And with that, she dared the bravest thing she'd ever done; she looked right into his eyes.
William Goldman (The Princess Bride)
Oh, I think not,” Varys said, swirling the wine in his cup. “Power is a curious thing, my lord. Perchance you have considered the riddle I posed you that day in the inn?” “It has crossed my mind a time or two,” Tyrion admitted. “The king, the priest, the rich man—who lives and who dies? Who will the swordsman obey? It’s a riddle without an answer, or rather, too many answers. All depends on the man with the sword.” “And yet he is no one,” Varys said. “He has neither crown nor gold nor favor of the gods, only a piece of pointed steel.” “That piece of steel is the power of life and death.” “Just so… yet if it is the swordsmen who rule us in truth, why do we pretend our kings hold the power? Why should a strong man with a sword ever obey a child king like Joffrey, or a wine-sodden oaf like his father?” “Because these child kings and drunken oafs can call other strong men, with other swords.” “Then these other swordsmen have the true power. Or do they?” Varys smiled. “Some say knowledge is power. Some tell us that all power comes from the gods. Others say it derives from law. Yet that day on the steps of Baelor’s Sept, our godly High Septon and the lawful Queen Regent and your ever-so-knowledgeable servant were as powerless as any cobbler or cooper in the crowd. Who truly killed Eddard Stark, do you think? Joffrey, who gave the command? Ser Ilyn Payne, who swung the sword? Or… another?” Tyrion cocked his head sideways. “Did you mean to answer your damned riddle, or only to make my head ache worse?” Varys smiled. “Here, then. Power resides where men believe it resides. No more and no less.” “So power is a mummer’s trick?” “A shadow on the wall,” Varys murmured, “yet shadows can kill. And ofttimes a very small man can cast a very large shadow.” Tyrion smiled. “Lord Varys, I am growing strangely fond of you. I may kill you yet, but I think I’d feel sad about it.” “I will take that as high praise.
George R.R. Martin (A Clash of Kings (A Song of Ice and Fire, #2))
How does one man assert his power over another, Winston?“ Winston thought. “By making him suffer”, he said. “Exactly. By making him suffer. Obedience is not enough. Unless he is suffering, how can you be sure that he is obeying your will and not his own? Power is in inflicting pain and humiliation. Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing. Do you begin to see, then, what kind of world we are creating? It is the exact opposite of the stupid hedonistic Utopias that the old reformers imagined. A world of fear and treachery is torment, a world of trampling and being trampled upon, a world which will grow not less but MORE merciless as it refines itself. Progress in our world will be progress towards more pain. The old civilizations claimed that they were founded on love or justice. Ours is founded upon hatred. In our world there will be no emotions except fear, rage, triumph, and self-abasement. Everything else we shall destroy – everything. Already we are breaking down the habits of thought which have survived from before the Revolution. We have cut the links between child and parent, and between man and man, and between man and woman. No one dares trust a wife or a child or a friend any longer. But in the future there will be no wives and no friends. Children will be taken from their mothers at birth, as one takes eggs from a hen. The sex instinct will be eradicated. Procreation will be an annual formality like the renewal of a ration card. We shall abolish the orgasm. Our neurologists are at work upon it now. There will be no loyalty, except loyalty towards the Party. There will be no love, except the love of Big Brother. There will be no laughter, except the laugh of triumph over a defeated enemy. There will be no art, no literature, no science. When we are omnipotent we shall have no more need of science. There will be no distinction between beauty and ugliness. There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed.
George Orwell (1984)
you make me laugh, with your metaphysical anguish, its just that you're scared silly, frightened of life, of men of action, of action itself, of lack of order. But everything is disorder, dear boy. Vegetable, mineral and animal, all disorder, and so is the multitude of human races, the life of man, thought, history, wars, inventions, business and the arts, and all theories, passions and systems. Its always been that way. Why are you trying to make something out of it? And what will you make? what are you looking for? There is no Truth. There's only action, action obeying a million different impulses, ephemeral action, action subjected to every possible and imaginable contingency and contradiction, Life. Life is crime, theft, jealousy, hunger, lies, disgust, stupidity, sickness, volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, piles of corpses. what can you do about it, my poor friend?
Blaise Cendrars
But now what? Why, now comes my master, takes me right away from my work, and my friends, and all I like, and grinds me down into the very dirt! And why? Because, he says, I forgot who I was; he says, to teach me that I am only a nigger! After all, and last of all, he comes between me and my wife, and says I shall give her up, and live with another woman. And all this your laws give him power to do, in spite of God or man. Mr. Wilson, look at it! There isn't one of all these things, that have broken the hearts of my mother and my sister, and my wife and myself, but your laws allow, and give every man power to do, in Kentucky, and none can say to him nay! Do you call these the laws of my country? Sir, I haven't any country, anymore than I have any father. But I'm going to have one. I don't want anything of your country, except to be let alone,--to go peaceably out of it; and when I get to Canada, where the laws will own me and protect me, that shall be my country, and its laws I will obey. But if any man tries to stop me, let him take care, for I am desperate. I'll fight for my liberty to the last breath I breathe. You say your fathers did it; if it was right for them, it is right for me!
Harriet Beecher Stowe (Uncle Tom's Cabin)
They were your friends?" "Yes, they were my friends." "And they will leave you to suffer alone?" "Now I see it." "And until this, were they friends you could trust?" "I could trust them." "I see what you mean. You mean they were the kind of friends that a good man could choose, upright, hard-working, obeying the law? Tell me, were they such friends? And now they leave you alone? Did you not see it before?" "I saw it.
Alan Paton (Cry, the Beloved Country)
Paul was far more concerned with obeying his divine calling than with gaining man’s approval. Only one thing mattered—pleasing the Master.
John F. MacArthur Jr. (Slave: The Hidden Truth About Your Identity in Christ)
The twelve disciples represent the twelve qualities of mind which can be controlled and disciplined by man. If disciplined they will at all times obey the command of the one who has disciplined them.
Neville Goddard (Your Faith is Your Fortune)
Do you see this lantern? cried Syme in a terrible voice.'Do you see the cross carved on it, and the flame inside? You did not make it. You did not light it. Better men than you, men who could believe and obey, twisted the entrails of iron and preserved the legend of fire. There is not a street you walk on, there is not a thread you wear, that was not made as this lantern was, by denying your philosophy of dirt and rats. You can make nothing. You can only destroy. You will destroy mankind, you will destroy the world. Let that suffice you. Yet this one old Christian lantern you shall not destroy. It shall go where your empire of apes will never have the wit to find it.
G.K. Chesterton (The Man Who Was Thursday: A Nightmare)
It is just the old way--that of obedience. If you have ever seen the Lord, if only from afar--if you have any vaguest suspicion that the Jew Jesus, who professed to have come from God, was a better man, a different man--one of your first duties must be to open your ears to His words and see whether they seem to you to be true. Then, if they do, to obey them with your whole strength and might. This is the way of life, which will lead a man out of its miseries into life indeed.
George MacDonald (The Marquis' Secret)
It’s like training dogs. You want the dog to obey you, but you can’t have real respect for a dog that always obeys you. You want a dog that occasionally goes over the wall or bites the postman without your permission; you want to be reminded that you command a subdued yet wild animal, not a crawler. A man should be strong enough to kill you with his bare hands.
Tibor Fischer (Voyage to the End of the Room)
Every hour be firmly resolved... to accomplish the work at hand with fitting and unaffected dignity, goodwill, freedom, justice. Banish from your thoughts all other considerations. This is possible if you perform each act as if it were your last, rejecting every frivolous distraction, every denial of the rule of reason, every pretentious gesture, vain show, and whining complaint against the decrees of fate. Do you see what little is required of a man to live a well-tempered and god-fearing life? Obey these precepts, and the gods will ask nothing more (II.5).
Marcus Aurelius (The Emperor's Handbook)
Nature did not blend things so inextricably that you can’t draw your own boundaries—place your own well-being in your own hands. It’s quite possible to be a good man without anyone realizing it. Remember that. And this too: you don’t need much to live happily. And just because you’ve abandoned your hopes of becoming a great thinker or scientist, don’t give up on attaining freedom, achieving humility, serving others, obeying God.
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations)
But please, father, understand me correctly: these were completely insignificant details, yet they oppressed me, because you, a great man of authority, could lay down rules for me, and ignore them.  And through this I saw that the world was divided into three parts: in the first lived the slave, me, under laws invented solely for my life but to which, without understanding why, I could never fully adjust; and in the second part lived you, infinitely far from me, busy ruling, giving commands and being angry when they weren’t followed; and in the third lived everybody else, happy and free from commands and obedience.  And I was constantly in disgrace, either because I followed your commands, and that was a disgrace, as they were valid only for me; or I was stubborn, and that was also a disgrace, because I was being stubborn to oppose you; or I wasn’t able to obey, because I, for example, had not your strength, your appetite, your skill, to do whatever it was that for you seemed natural – and of all things this disgrace was the greatest.  But these aren’t the reflections of childhood, but the feelings. Perhaps
Franz Kafka (Letter to My Father)
'And it means naught to you to obey your father's orders? Where is your fealty?' Christian felt his face flush with a surge of bitter rage. 'I keep faith with those who have kept faith with me.' William shook his head in disbelief. 'God save me from ever having sons like you.' 'I would wish it on no man,' Christian said sincerely.
Eli Easton (The Lion and the Crow)
God wishes this and Your Majesty does not wish it. Whom then should we obey? We must obey God rather than man.
Claude Brousson
NOW this is the Law of the Jungle — as old and as true as the sky; And the Wolf that shall keep it may prosper, but the Wolf that shall break it must die. As the creeper that girdles the tree-trunk the Law runneth forward and back — For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack. Wash daily from nose-tip to tail-tip; drink deeply, but never too deep; And remember the night is for hunting, and forget not the day is for sleep. The Jackal may follow the Tiger, but, Cub, when thy whiskers are grown, Remember the Wolf is a Hunter — go forth and get food of thine own. Keep peace withe Lords of the Jungle — the Tiger, the Panther, and Bear. And trouble not Hathi the Silent, and mock not the Boar in his lair. When Pack meets with Pack in the Jungle, and neither will go from the trail, Lie down till the leaders have spoken — it may be fair words shall prevail. When ye fight with a Wolf of the Pack, ye must fight him alone and afar, Lest others take part in the quarrel, and the Pack be diminished by war. The Lair of the Wolf is his refuge, and where he has made him his home, Not even the Head Wolf may enter, not even the Council may come. The Lair of the Wolf is his refuge, but where he has digged it too plain, The Council shall send him a message, and so he shall change it again. If ye kill before midnight, be silent, and wake not the woods with your bay, Lest ye frighten the deer from the crop, and your brothers go empty away. Ye may kill for yourselves, and your mates, and your cubs as they need, and ye can; But kill not for pleasure of killing, and seven times never kill Man! If ye plunder his Kill from a weaker, devour not all in thy pride; Pack-Right is the right of the meanest; so leave him the head and the hide. The Kill of the Pack is the meat of the Pack. Ye must eat where it lies; And no one may carry away of that meat to his lair, or he dies. The Kill of the Wolf is the meat of the Wolf. He may do what he will; But, till he has given permission, the Pack may not eat of that Kill. Cub-Right is the right of the Yearling. From all of his Pack he may claim Full-gorge when the killer has eaten; and none may refuse him the same. Lair-Right is the right of the Mother. From all of her year she may claim One haunch of each kill for her litter, and none may deny her the same. Cave-Right is the right of the Father — to hunt by himself for his own: He is freed of all calls to the Pack; he is judged by the Council alone. Because of his age and his cunning, because of his gripe and his paw, In all that the Law leaveth open, the word of your Head Wolf is Law. Now these are the Laws of the Jungle, and many and mighty are they; But the head and the hoof of the Law and the haunch and the hump is — Obey!
Rudyard Kipling (The Jungle Book)
I sent a clear warning to you, Aidan." There was a hint of censure in his words, although his voice was soft. There was a hard edge to Aidan's mouth. "I received your warning. But this is my city, Gregori, and my family. I take care of my own." Savannah rolled her eyes. "You could just beat on your chests,you know. It probably works just as well." You will show some respect, Gregori ordered. Savannah burst out laughing, then reached up to caress his shadowed jaw. "Keep hoping,my love, and perhaps someday someone will obey you." Aidan's mouth twitched, the golden eyes sliding over Gregori in amusement. "She inherited something besides her mother's good looks,did she not?" Gregori sighed heavily. "She is impossible." Aidan laughed,ignoring the warning flash from Gregori's pale eyes. "I believe they all are." Savannah ducked out from under Gregori's arm and found an overstuffed chair to curl up on. "Of course we're impossible.It's the only way to stay sane." "I would have brought Alexandria to meet you,but Gregori's warning dictated prudence." Aidan sounded smug, as if he had been able to lay down the law to his woman when Gregori was unable to do so. Savannah flashed an impish grin up at the man. "What did you do,leave her sleeping while you ran off to play hero? I'll just bet she has a thing or two to say to you when you wake her." Aidan had the grace to look sheepish. Then he turned to Gregori. "Your lifemate is a mean little thing, healer. I do not envy you." Savannah laughed, unrepentant. "He's crazy about me. Don't let him fool you." "I believe you," Aidan agreed. "Do not encourage her in her rebellion," Gregori tried to sound severe,but she was turning him inside out.She was everything to him, even with her silliness.Where did she get her outrageous sense of humor? How could she ever be happy with someone who hadn't laughed in centuries? She melted his insides. Melted him. He was careful to keep his face expressionless. It was bad enough that Savannah knew he was practically wrapped around her little finger. Aidan didn't need to know,too.
Christine Feehan (Dark Magic (Dark, #4))
Voltaire’s pointed question, ‘What to say to a man who tells you he prefers to obey God than to obey men, and who is consequently sure of entering the gates of Heaven by slitting your throat?
Nick Cohen (You Can't Read This Book: Censorship in an Age of Freedom)
You do not his will, and so you cannot understand him; you do not know him, that is why you cannot trust in him. You think your common sense enough to let you know what he means? Your common sense ought to be enough to know itself unequal to the task. It is the heart of the child that alone can understand the Father. Would you have me think you guilty of the sin against the Holy Ghost—that you understand Jesus Christ and yet will not obey him? That were too dreadful. I believe you do not understand him. No man can do yet what he tells him aright—but are you trying? Obedience is not perfection, but trying.
George MacDonald (Unspoken Sermons, Series I., II., and III.)
O’Brien: How does one man assert his power over another, Winston? Winston: By making him suffer. O’Brien: Exactly. By making him suffer. Obedience is not enough. Unless he is suffering, how can you be sure that he is obeying your will and not his own? Power is in inflicting pain and humiliation. Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing. Do you begin to see, then, what kind of world we are creating? It is the exact opposite of the stupid hedonistic Utopias that the old reformers imagined. A world of fear and treachery and torment, a world of trampling and being trampled upon, a world which will grow not less but MORE merciless as it refines itself. Progress in our world will be progress towards more pain. The old civilizations claimed that they were founded on love or justice. Ours is founded upon hatred.
George Orwell
The Doper's Dream Last night I dreamed I was plugged right in To a bubblin' hookah so high, When all of a sudden some Arab jinni Jump up just a-winkin' his eye. 'I'm here to obey all your wishes,' he told me. As for words I was trying to grope. 'Good buddy,' I cried, 'you could surely oblige me By turning me on to some dope!' With a bigfat smile he took ahold of my hand, And we flew down the sky in a flash, And the first thing I saw in the land where he took me Was a whole solid mountain of hash! All the trees was a-bloomin' with pink 'n' purple pills, Whur the Romilar River flowed by, To the magic mushrooms as wild as a rainbow, So pretty that I wanted to cry. All the girls come to greet us, so sweet in slow motion, Mourning glories woven into their hair, Bringin' great big handfuls of snowy cocaine, All their dope they were eager to share. We we dallied for days, just a-ballin' and smokin', In the flowering Panama Red, Just piggin' on peyote and nutmeg tea, And those brownies so kind to your head. Now I could've passed that good time forever, And I really was fixing to stay, But you know that jinni turned out, t'be a narco man, And he busted me right whur I lay. And he took me back to a cold, cold world 'N' now m'prison's whurever I be... And I dream of the days back in Doperland And I wonder, will I ever go free?
Thomas Pynchon (Gravity's Rainbow)
A true natural aristocracy is not a separate interest in the state, or separable from it. It is an essential integrant part of any large body rightly constituted. It is formed out of a class of legitimate presumptions, which taken as generalities, must be admitted for actual truths. To be bred in a place of estimation; to see nothing low and sordid from one’s infancy; to be taught to respect one’s self; to be habituated to the censorial inspection of the public eye; to look early to public opinion; to stand upon such elevated ground as to be enabled to take a large view of the wide-spread and infinitely diversified combinations of men and affairs in a large society; to have leisure to read, to reflect, to converse; to be enabled to draw the court and attention of the wise and learned wherever they are to be found;—to be habituated in armies to command and to obey; to be taught to despise danger in the pursuit of honor and duty; to be formed to the greatest degree of vigilance, foresight and circumspection, in a state of things in which no fault is committed with impunity, and the slightest mistakes draw on the most ruinous consequence—to be led to a guarded and regulated conduct, from a sense that you are considered as an instructor of your fellow-citizens in their highest concerns, and that you act as a reconciler between God and man—to be employed as an administrator of law and justice, and to be thereby amongst the first benefactors to mankind—to be a professor of high science, or of liberal and ingenuous art—to be amongst rich traders, who from their success are presumed to have sharp and vigorous understandings, and to possess the virtues of diligence, order, constancy, and regularity, and to have cultivated an habitual regard to commutative justice—these are the circumstances of men, that form what I should call a natural aristocracy, without which there is no nation.
Edmund Burke
Dear good guy I can hear your cries I can feel your pain I can smell your frustration I can see the confusion in your eyes Confused about how women see you In a land of women tired of being played They still take you as a joke and think you’re all games They play you like they were played They can’t see the seriousness in your eyes When you call her “Queen” and ask for her heart And you cry for commitment, they back out and shut down Treat you like the bad guys treated them It’s so ironic You hate seeing these ladies get their hearts stomped on Their minds toyed with It’s killing you because you’ve done it to women yourself you’ve seen other guys do it You want to save them from the destruction But like a child who refuses to obey their mother’s wisdom, until they are wise enough to understand through experience They won’t value you until they get burned playing with the fire of curiosity Some of them crave destruction They crave the fun that these fellas who will degrade them have to offer They are being guided by curiosity and their wisdom is foolishness Fight the urge to become like the men these ladies who lack understanding chase after Don’t let rejection consume your heart and cause you to crumble Being a promiscuous man who lacks self-respect and morals is overrated Find peace with being the underdog Your type is needed in this world, my good friend Hold on There are women out there who are in search for someone like you One of them will be the one who appreciates the detailed things about you the previous women called corny There are women out there who will value your honesty, your character, your loyalty Hold on, my friend Narrow is the right path You are on the right path, my friend Your time will come in due time You will not just be getting a girl, you will be getting a woman who will be willing to finish off this life’s journey with you You are not alone I am with you and I understand the hardships you face, the doubt, the anger I want you to know you are doing a great job at being you Do not give up Stand firm and continue to be different You will be an example to many although you are in the minority Corruption
Pierre Alex Jeanty (Unspoken Feelings of a Gentleman)
...Not yet dry behind the ears, not old enough to buy a beer, but old enough to die for his country. He can recite to you the nomenclature of a machine gun or grenade launcher and use either one effectively if he must. He digs foxholes and latrines and can apply first aid like a professional. He can march until he is told to stop, or stop until he is told to march. He obeys orders instantly and without hesitation, but he is not without spirit or individual dignity. He is self-sufficient. ...He sometimes forgets to brush his teeth, but never to clean his rifle. He can cook his own meals, mend his own clothes, and fix his own hurts. If you're thirsty, he'll share his water with you; if you are hungry, food. He'll even split his ammunition with you in the midst of battle when you run low. He has learned to use his hands like weapons and weapons like they were his hands. He can save your life-or take it, because that is his job. He will often do twice the work of a civilian, draw half the pay, and still find ironic humor in it all. He has seen more suffering and death than he should have in his short lifetime. He has wept in public and in private, for friends who have fallen in combat and is unashamed. He feels every note of the National Anthem vibrate through his body while at rigid attention, while tempering the burning desire to "square-away" those around him who haven't bothered to stand, remove their hat, or even stop talking. ...Just as did his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, he is paying the price for our freedom. Beardless or not, he is not a boy. He is the American Fighting Man that has kept this country free for over two hundred years. He has asked nothing in return, except our friendship and understanding. Remember him, always, for he has earned our respect and admiration with his blood. And now we have women over there in danger, doing their part in this tradition of going to war when our nation calls us to do so. As you go to bed tonight, remember this. A short lull, a little shade, and a picture of loved ones in their helmets.
Sarah Palin (America by Heart: Reflections on Family, Faith, and Flag)
O, ho, are you there with me? No eyes in your head, nor no money in your purse? Your eyes are in a heavy case, your purse in a light: yet you see how this world goes. Ear; of Gloster, “I see it feelingly.” Lear, “What, art mad? A man may see how this world goes with no eyes. Look with thine ears: see how yond justice rails upon yond simple thief. Hark, in thine ear: change places; and handy-dandy, which is the justice, which is the thief? - Thou hast seen a farmer’s dog bark at a begger? Earl of Gloster, ‘Ay, sir. Lear, “And the creature run from the cur? There thou mightst behold the great image of authority: a dog’s obey’d in office. - Thou rascal beadle, hold thy bloody hand! Why dost though lash that whore? Strip thine own back; Thou hotly lusts to use her in that kind For which thou whipst her. The usurer hangs the cozener. Through tattere’d clothes small vices to appear; Robes and furr’d gowns hide all. Plate sin with gold, And the strong lance of justice hurtless breaks; Arm it in rags, a pygmy’s straw does pierce it. None does offend, none, - I say, none; I’ll able ‘em to seal the accuser’s lips. Get thee glass eyes; To see the things thou dost not. - Now, now, now, now: Pull off my boots: - harder, harder: - so. Edgar (aside), “O, matter and impertinency mixt! Reason in madness!
William Shakespeare
Hold fast, in your imagination, to all that is lovely and of good report, for the lovely and the good are essential in your life if it is to be worthwhile. Assume it. You do this by imagining that you already are what you want to be — and already have what you want to have. “As a man thinketh in his heart so is he.” Be still and know that you are that which you desire to be, and you will never have to search for it. In spite of your appearance of freedom of action, you obey, as everything else does, the law of assumption.
Neville Goddard (The Power of Awareness)
He thought of all the living species that train their young in the art of survival, the cats who teach their kittens to hunt, the birds who spend such strident effort on teaching their fledglings to fly – yet man, whose tool of survival is the mind, does not merely fail to teach a child to think, but devotes the child’s education to the purpose of destroying his brain, of convincing him that thought is futile and evil, before he has started to think. From the first catch-phrases flung at a child to the last, it is like a series of shocks to freeze his motor, to undercut the power of his consciousness. “Don’t ask so many questions, children should be seen and not heard!” – “Who are you to think? It’s so, because I say so!” – “Don’t argue, obey!” – “Don’t try to understand, believe!” – “Don’t struggle, compromise!” – “Your heart is more important than your mind!” – “Who are you to know? Your parents know best!” – “Who are you to know? The bureaucrats know best!” – “Who are you to object? All values are relative!” – “Who are you to want to escape a thug’s bullet? That’s only a personal prejudice!” Men would shudder, he thought, if they saw a mother bird plucking the feathers from the wings of her young, then pushing him out of the nest to struggle for survival – yet that was what they did to their children.
Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)
Yes, My Son, man is a piece of wood, that can be used for everything, from the moment he’s born until the moment he dies, he’s always ready to obey, send him there and he goes, tell him to halt and he stops, tell him to turn back and he retreats, whether in peace or in war, man, generally speaking, is the best thing that could have happened to the gods, And the wood from which I’m made, since I’m a man, what use will it be put to, since I’m Your son, You will be the spoon I shall dip into humanity and bring out laden with men who shall believe in the new god I intend to become, Laden with men You will devour, There’s no need for Me to devour those who devour themselves.
José Saramago
Do not waste time bothering whether you ‘love’ your neighbor; act as if you did. When you are behaving as if you loved someone, you will presently come to love him. If you injure someone you dislike, you will find yourself disliking him more. If you do him a good turn, you will find yourself disliking him less. There is, indeed one exception. If you do him a good turn, not to please God and obey the law of charity, but to show him what a fine, forgiving chap you are, and to put him in your debt, and then sit down to wait for his ‘gratitude’, you will probably be disappointed. (People are not fools: they have a very quick eye for showing off, or patronage.) But whenever we do good to another self, just because it is a self, made (like us) by God and desiring its own happiness as we desire ours, we shall have learned to love it a little more, or at least to dislike it less.... Some writers use the word charity to describe not only Christian love between human beings, but also God’s love for man and man’s love for God. About the second of these two, people are often worried. They are told they ought to love God. They cannot find any such feeling in them selves. What are they to do? The answer is the same as before. Act as if you did. Do not sit trying to manufacture feelings. Ask yourself, “If I were sure that I loved God what would I do? When you have found the answer, go and do it.
C.S. Lewis
I can see that your thoughts are deeper than you yourself are able to express. But since this is so, you know, don't you, that you've never lived what you are thinking and that isn't good. Only the ideas that we actually live are of any value. You knew all along that your sanctioned world was only half the world and you tried to suppress the second half the same way the priests and teachers do. You won't succeed. No one succeeds in this once he has begun to think." This went straight to my heart. "But there are forbidden and ugly things in the world!" I almost shouted. "You can't deny that. And they are forbidden, and we must renounce them. Of course I know that murder and all kinds of vices exist in the world but should I become a criminal just because they exist?" "We won't be able to find all the answers today," Max soothed me. "Certainly you shouldn't go kill somebody or rape a girl, no! But you haven't reached the point where you can understand the actual meaning of 'permitted' and 'forbidden.' You've only sensed part of the truth. You will feel the other part, too, you can depend on it. For instance, for about a year you have had to struggle with a drive that is stronger than any other and which is considered 'forbidden.' The Greeks and many other peoples, on the other hand, elevated this drive, made it divine and celebrated it in great feasts. What is forbidden, in other words, is not something eternal; it can change. Anyone can sleep with a woman as soon as he's been to a pastor with her and has married her, yet other races do it differently, even nowadays. That is why each of us has to find out for himself what is permitted and what is forbidden -forbidden for him. It's possible for one never to transgress a single law and still be a bastard. And vice versa. Actually it's only a question of convenience. Those who are too lazy and comfortable to think for themselves and be their own judges obey the laws. Others sense their own laws within them; things are forbidden to them that every honorable man will do any day in the year and other things are allowed to them that are generally despised. Each person must stand on his own feet.
Hermann Hesse (Demian)
The heartwood," Rob murmured, looking at me. "You wanted to marry me in the heart of Major Oak." I beamed at him grateful that he understood. "And Scar," he whispered. I leaned in close. "Are you wearing knives to our wedding?" Nodding, I laughed, telling him, "I was going to get you here one way or another, Hood." He laughed, a bright, merry sound. Standing in the heart of the tree, he reached again for my hand, fingers sliding over mine. Touching his hand, a rope of lightening lashed round my fingers, like it seared us together. Now, and for always. His fingers moved on mine, rubbing over my hand before capturing it tight and turning me to the priest. The priest looked over his shoulder, watching as the sun began to dip. He led us in prayer, he asked me to speak the same words I'd spoken not long past to Gisbourne, but that whole thing felt like a bad dream, like I were waking and it were fading and gone for good. "Lady Scarlet." he asked me with a smile, "known to some as Lady Marian of Huntingdon, will thou have this lord to thy wedded husband, will thou love him and honour him, keep him and obey him, in health and in sickness, as a wife should a husband, forsaking all others on account of him, so long as ye both shall live?" I looked at Robin, tears burning in my eyes. "I will," I promised. "I will, always." Rob's face were beaming back at me, his ocean eyes shimmering bright. The priest smiled. "Robin of Locksley, will thou have this lady to thy wedded wife, will thou love her and honor her, keep her and guard her, in health and in sickness, as a husband should a wife, forsaking all others on account of her, so long as ye both shall live?" the priest asked. "Yes," Rob said. "I will." "You have the rings?" the priest asked Rob. "I do," I told the priest, taking two rings from where Bess had tied them to my dress. I'd sent Godfrey out to buy them at market without Rob knowing. "I knew you weren't planning on this," I told him. Rob just grinned like a fool at me, taking the ring I handed him to put on my finger. Laughs bubbled up inside of me, and I felt like I were smiling so wide something were stuck in my cheeks and holding me open. More shy and proud than I thought I'd be, I said. "I take you as me wedded husband, Robin. And thereto I plight my troth." I pushed the ring onto his finger. He took my half hand in one of his, but the other- holding the ring- went into his pocket. "I may not have known I would marry you today Scar," he said. "But I did know I would marry you." He showed me a ring, a large ruby set in delicate gold. "This," he said to me, "was my mother's. It's the last thing I have of hers, and when I met you and loved you and realized your name was the exact colour of the stone- " He swallowed, and cleared his throat, looking at me with the blue eyes that shot right through me. "This was meant to be Scarlet. I was always meant to love you. To marry you." The priest coughed. "Say the words, my son, and you will marry her." Rob grinned and I laughed, and Rob stepped closer, cradling my hand. "I take you as my wedded wife, Scarlet. And thereto I plight my troth." He slipped the ring on my finger and it fit. "Receive the Holy Spirit," the priest said, and kissed Robin on the cheek. Rob's happy grin turned a touch wolflike as he turned back to me, hauling me against him and angling his mouth over mine. I wrapped my arms around him and my head spun- I couldn't tell if we were spinning, if I were dizzy, if my feet were on the ground anymore at all, but all I knew, all I cared for, were him, his mouth against mine, and letting the moment we became man and wife spin into eternity.
A.C. Gaughen (Lion Heart (Scarlet, #3))
You can plead the Blood of Jesus, over any and everything; your spirit, soul and body, your house, car, work, children, spouse, business, as a form of protection or prevention against evil. You can plead the Blood of Jesus over your journey, the road, the vehicle or aircraft, etc. If you are living or passing through a dangerous zone; you can draw a bloodline of protection, therefore making a boundary, against any evil. A man had a poultry where, all of sudden, the chickens began to die. When he saw that he was going bankrupt with the loss, he cried unto the Lord, who ministered to him about drawing a bloodline around the poultry. Thus, creating a boundary that the enemy cannot cross. He walked round and drew the bloodline around the poultry that night. The following day, he found the carcass of a wolf, about two feet into the circle that he drew. It was stone dead; it had passed its bounds. Today, I pray that any, wolf assigned against your life, shall die in the Name of Jesus. Draw the Bloodline and the enemy will keep off. These are very serious matters and we should recognise and know these secrets. Recently, there have been disasters that have destroyed many lives in many countries. I was told of a man, who saw the flood raging towards his house and he came out and pleaded the Blood of Jesus. The flood obeyed him, not a single drop of water entered his house but the houses next to him, were submerged. That is the power in the Blood of Jesus!
D.K. Olukoya (Praying by the Blood of Jesus)
You ought to have principles of your own, Mr Walton." "I hope I have. And one of them is, not to make mountains of molehills; for a molehill is not a mountain. A man ought to have too much to do in obeying his conscience and keeping his soul's garments clean, to mind whether he wears black or white when telling his flock that God loves them, and that they will never be happy till they believe it.
George MacDonald (Annals of a Quiet Neighbourhood)
And what makes you think I'm going to do anything you say?" "Because for the time being you are legally mine,and that means you will obey me." She nearly choked she drew in her breath so sharply. "Do not count on that,St. John.I don't care what rights you think this mockery of a marriage gives you,as far as I'm concerned,you don't even exist.Do I need to be more explicit?" "No,I believe we have come to a mutual agreement to forget about each other, which suits me just fine.As long as you do nothing to gain my notice, which means you stay at your home for the duration." "Your threats don't scare me." He lifted a brow at her. "No? Then you really must have some odd notions about marriage,if you think you can do as you please now.Ask your mother if you doubt me." He walked away,and she didn't bother to look where. They were man and wife and would be until he got their marriage annulled. What a rude awakening that was going to be in three or four months' time.For him.
Johanna Lindsey (A Rogue of My Own (Reid Family, #3))
And that date, too, is far off?' 'Far off; when it comes, think your end in this world is at hand!' 'How and what is the end? Look east, west, south and north.' 'In the north, where you never yet trod, towards the point whence your instincts have warned you, there a spectre will seize you. 'Tis Death! I see a ship - it is haunted - 'tis chased - it sails on. Baffled navies sail after that ship. It enters the regions of ice. It passes a sky red with meteors. Two moons stand on high, over ice-reefs. I see the ship locked between white defiles - they are ice-rocks. I see the dead strew the decks - stark and livid, green mold on their limbs. All are dead, but one man - it is you! But years, though so slowly they come, have then scathed you. There is the coming of age on your brow, and the will is relaxed in the cells of the brain. Still that will, though enfeebled, exceeds all that man knew before you, through the will you live on, gnawed with famine; and nature no longer obeys you in that death-spreading region; the sky is a sky of iron, and the air has iron clamps, and the ice-rocks wedge in the ship. Hark how it cracks and groans. Ice will imbed it as amber imbeds a straw. And a man has gone forth, living yet, from the ship and its dead; and he has clambered up the spikes of an iceberg, and the two moons gaze down on his form. That man is yourself; and terror is on you - terror; and terror has swallowed your will. And I see swarming up the steep ice-rock, grey grisly things. The bears of the north have scented their quarry - they come near you and nearer, shambling and rolling their bulk, and in that day every moment shall seem to you longer than the centuries through which you have passed. And heed this - after life, moments continued make the bliss or the hell of eternity.' 'Hush,' said the whisper; 'but the day, you assure me, is far off - very far! I go back to the almond and rose of Damascus! - sleep!' ("The House And The Brain
Edward Bulwer-Lytton (Reign of Terror Volume 2: Great Victorian Horror Stories)
Bill.' If you don't, I'll do this," and with that he gave me a twitch that I thought would have made me faint. Between this and that, I was so utterly terrified of the blind beggar that I forgot my terror of the captain, and as I opened the parlour door, cried out the words he had ordered in a trembling voice. The poor captain raised his eyes, and at one look the rum went out of him and left him staring sober. The expression of his face was not so much of terror as of mortal sickness. He made a movement to rise, but I do not believe he had enough force left in his body. "Now, Bill, sit where you are," said the beggar. "If I can't see, I can hear a finger stirring. Business is business. Hold out your left hand. Boy, take his left hand by the wrist and bring it near to my right." We both obeyed him to the letter, and I saw him pass something from the hollow of the hand that held his stick into the palm of the captain's, which closed upon it instantly. "And now that's done," said the blind man; and at the words he suddenly left hold of me, and with incredible accuracy and nimbleness, skipped out of the parlour and into the road, where, as I still stood motionless, I could hear his stick go tap-tap-tapping into the distance. It was some time before either I or the captain seemed to gather our senses, but at length, and about at the same moment, I released his wrist, which I was still holding, and he drew in his hand and looked sharply into the palm. "Ten o'clock!" he cried. "Six hours. We'll do them yet," and he sprang to his feet. Even as he did so, he reeled, put his hand to his throat, stood swaying for a moment, and then, with a peculiar sound, fell from his whole height face foremost to the floor. I ran to him at once, calling to my mother. But haste was all in vain. The captain had been struck dead by thundering apoplexy. It is a curious thing to understand, for I had certainly never liked the man, though of late I had begun to pity him, but as soon as I saw that he was dead, I burst into a flood of tears. It was the second death I had known, and the sorrow of the first was still fresh in my heart. 4 The Sea-chest I LOST no time, of course, in telling my mother all that I knew, and perhaps should have told her long before, and we saw ourselves at once in a difficult and dangerous position. Some of the man's money—if he had any—was certainly due to us, but it was not likely that our captain's shipmates, above all the two specimens seen by me, Black Dog and the blind beggar, would be inclined to give up their booty in payment of the dead man's debts. The captain's order to mount at once and ride for Doctor Livesey would have left my mother alone and unprotected, which was not to be thought of. Indeed, it seemed impossible for either of us to remain much longer in the house; the fall of coals in the kitchen grate, the very ticking of the clock, filled us with alarms. The neighbourhood, to our ears, seemed haunted by approaching footsteps; and what between the dead body of the captain on the parlour floor and the thought of that detestable blind beggar hovering near at hand and ready to return, there were moments when, as the saying goes, I jumped in my skin for terror. Something must speedily be resolved upon, and it occurred to us at last to go forth together and seek help in the neighbouring hamlet. No sooner said than done. Bare-headed as we were, we ran out at once in the gathering evening and the frosty fog. The hamlet lay not many hundred yards away, though out of view, on the other side of the next cove; and what greatly encouraged me, it was in an opposite direction from that whence the blind man had made his appearance and whither he had presumably returned. We were not many minutes on the road, though we sometimes stopped to lay hold of each other and hearken. But there was no unusual sound—nothing but the low wash of the ripple and the croaking of the inmates of the wood.
Robert Louis Stevenson (Treasure Island)
OBEDIENCE IS NOT ENOUGH. Unless he is suffering, how can you be sure that he is obeying your will and not his own? Power is in inflicting pain and humiliation. Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing. Do you begin to see, then, what kind of world we are creating? It is the exact opposite of the stupid hedonistic Utopias that the old reformers imagined. A world of fear and treachery and torment, a world of trampling and being trampled upon, a world which will grow not less but more merciless as it refines itself. Progress in our world will be progress toward more pain. The old civilizations claimed that they were founded on love or justice. Ours is founded upon hatred. In our world there will be no emotions except fear, rage, triumph, and self-abasement. Everything else we shall destroy--everything. Already we are breaking down the habits of thought which have survived from before the Revolution. We have cut the links between child and parent, and between man and man, and between man and woman. No one dares trust a wife or a child or a friend any longer. But in the future there will be no wives and no friends. Children will be taken from their mothers at birth, as one takes eggs from a hen. The sex instinct will be eradicated. Procreation will be an annual formality like the renewal of a ration card. We shall abolish the orgasm. Our neurologists are at work upon it now. There will be no loyalty, except loyalty toward the Party. There will be no love, except the love of Big Brother. There will be no laughter, except the laugh of triumph over a defeated enemy. There will be no art, no literature, no science. When we are omnipotent we shall have no more need of science. There will be no distinction between beauty and ugliness. There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment of the process of life. All competing pleasures will be destroyed. But always--do not forget this, Winston--always there will be the intoxication of power, constantly increasing and constantly growing subtler. Always, at every moment, there will be the thrill of victory, the sensation of trampling on an enemy who is helpless. If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face--forever.
George Orwell (1984)
Todd wrapped his arm around her. They stood together in silent awe, watching the sunset. All Christy could think of was how this was what she had always wanted, to be held in Todd's arms as well as in his heart. Just as the last golden drop of sun melted into the ocean, Christy closed her eyes and drew in a deep draught of the sea air. "Did you know," Todd said softly, "that the setting sun looks so huge from the island of Papua New Guinea that it almost looks like you're on another planet? I've seen pictures." Then, as had happened with her reflection in her cup of tea and in her disturbing dream, Christy heard those two piercing words, "Let go." She knew what she had to do. Turning to face Todd, she said, "Pictures aren't enough for you, Todd. You have to go." "I will. Someday. Lord willing," he said casually. "Don't you see, Todd? The Lord is willing. This is your 'someday.' Your opportunity to go on the mission field is now. You have to go." Their eyes locked in silent communion. "God has been telling me something, Todd. He's been telling me to let you go. I don't want to, but I need to obey Him." Todd paused. "Maybe I should tell them I can only go for the summer. That way I'll only be gone a few months. A few weeks, really. We'll be back together in the fall." Christy shook her head. "It can't be like that, Todd. You have to go for as long as God tells you to go. And as long as I've known you, God has been telling you to go. His mark is on your life, Todd. It's obvious. You need to obey Him." "Kilikina," Todd said, grasping Christy by the shoulders, "do you realize what you're saying? If I go, I may never come back." "I know." Christy's reply was barely a whisper. She reached for the bracelet on her right wrist and released the lock. Then taking Todd's hand, she placed the "Forever" bracelet in his palm and closed his fingers around it. "Todd," she whispered, forcing the words out, "the Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make His face to shine upon you and give you His peace. And may you always love Jesus more than anything else. Even more than me." Todd crumbled to the sand like a man who had been run through with a sword. Burying his face in his hands, he wept. Christy stood on wobbly legs. What have I done? Oh, Father God, why do I have to let him go? Slowly lowering her quivering body to the sand beside Todd, Christy cried until all she could taste was the salty tears on her lips. They drove the rest of the way home in silence. A thick mantle hung over them, entwining them even in their separation. To Christy it seemed like a bad dream. Someone else had let go of Todd. Not her! He wasn't really going to go. They pulled into Christy's driveway, and Todd turned off the motor. Without saying anything, he got out of Gus and came around to Christy's side to open the door for her. She stepped down and waited while he grabbed her luggage from the backseat. They walked to the front door. Todd stopped her under the trellis of wildly fragrant white jasmine. With tears in his eyes, he said in a hoarse voice, "I'm keeping this." He lifted his hand to reveal the "Forever" bracelet looped between his fingers. "If God ever brings us together again in this world, I'm putting this back on your wrist, and that time, my Kilikina, it will stay on forever." He stared at her through blurry eyes for a long minute, and then without a hug, a kiss, or even a good-bye, Todd turned to go. He walked away and never looked back.
Robin Jones Gunn (Sweet Dreams (Christy Miller, #11))
When people complain, for instance, that they find it hard to believe, it is a sign of deliberate or unconscious disobedience... The outcome is usually that self-imparted absolution confirms the man in his disobedience, and makes him plead ignorance of the kindness as well as the commandment of God. He complains that Godís commandment is uncertain, and susceptible of different interpretations. At first he was aware enough of his disobedience, but with his increasing hardness of heart that awareness grows ever fainter, and in the end he becomes so enmeshed that he loses all capacity for hearing the Word, and faith is quite impossible... It is time to take the bull by the horns, and say: 'Only those who obey believe.'... 'You are disobedient, you are trying to keep some part of your life under your own control. That is what is preventing you from listening to Christ and believing in His Grace. You cannot hear Christ because you are willfully disobedient. Somewhere in your heart you are refusing to listen to his call. Your difficulty is your sins.' Christ now enters the lists again and comes to grips with the devil, who until now has been hiding.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer
C. S. Lewis notes: My argument against God was that the universe seemed so cruel and unjust. But how had I gotten this idea of just and unjust? A man does not call something crooked unless he has some idea of a straight line. 5 This is precisely the problem for the atheist. He must answer the question: Where does the moral scoring system come from that allows one to identify evil in the first place? Where is the transcendent standard of objective good that makes the whole notion of evil intelligible? Are moral laws the product of chance? If so, why obey them? What —or who —establishes how things are supposed to be?
Gregory Koukl (Tactics: A Game Plan for Discussing Your Christian Convictions)
You can have that life,” he told her. “It’s right there for you to take.” “I love you,” Eve quickly countered. “Loving me hurts you, doesn’t it?” Beckett asked, looking down. “No, you don’t have to tell me. I know. I can smell it. I can smell the pain coming off of you,” he said, looking at the floor. “You had love before and a future. What does loving me get you, Eve? What does it get you?” He stood, angry with himself. “I don’t need to get anything from you. It’s the way it is. There’s no changing that.” She gripped the porch railing. Beckett stepped close to Eve and tenderly tucked a lock of hair that had escaped her ponytail behind her ear. “You’re saying goodbye,” she said, her eyes full of questions. “Do you know there are other little girls out there like that one? I lived with a few of them. They would sell their souls for a mother like you.” At the word mother Eve’s chin crumpled. She tried to hold back the tears, but they wouldn’t obey. “See that? It’s what you need. You need that—a little kid calling you Mom.” Beckett put his arms around her as she shattered. The pain she kept hidden surfaced from where it had been smoldering. When he felt her knees weaken, he hugged her harder. “That’s right. It’s okay. It’s nothing to be ashamed of, baby. You want normal.” He guided her to the chair he’d vacated. “There’s a guy out there who’ll hold your hand. There’s a little girl out there. She’s waiting for you. It’ll be okay. It’ll be okay.” He knelt in front of her and rubbed her arms. She slapped at his hands, letting outrage carry her words. “I don’t want another man. I want you. I’ve killed for you. I’ve protected you. What the hell do you think you’re doing? Do you honestly think these hands that kill can hold a child?” She held her fingers in front of her face. “Yes. Absolutely. Don’t you know, gorgeous? Mothers are some of the most vicious killers out there, if their kids are threatened. You just have more practice.” He took her hands and kissed them. “I’ve lost too much. I can’t lose you. Don’t make me. Please. I’ll beg you if I have to.” She watched his lips on her palms. He shook his head and used her own words against her. “The hardest part of loving someone is not being with them when you want to be.” He stood, and she mirrored his motion,already shaking her head. “Don’t say it.” Beckett ignored her; he knew what he had to do. He had to set beautiful Eve free to find that soft, touchable woman he’d seen her become with the little girl.
Debra Anastasia (Poughkeepsie (Poughkeepsie Brotherhood, #1))
TO MY SISTER IT is the first mild day of March: Each minute sweeter than before The redbreast sings from the tall larch That stands beside our door. There is a blessing in the air, Which seems a sense of joy to yield To the bare trees, and mountains bare, And grass in the green field. My sister! ('tis a wish of mine) Now that our morning meal is done, 10 Make haste, your morning task resign; Come forth and feel the sun. Edward will come with you;--and, pray, Put on with speed your woodland dress; And bring no book: for this one day We'll give to idleness. No joyless forms shall regulate Our living calendar: We from to-day, my Friend, will date The opening of the year. 20 Love, now a universal birth, From heart to heart is stealing, From earth to man, from man to earth: --It is the hour of feeling. One moment now may give us more Than years of toiling reason: Our minds shall drink at every pore The spirit of the season. Some silent laws our hearts will make, Which they shall long obey: 30 We for the year to come may take Our temper from to-day. And from the blessed power that rolls About, below, above, We'll frame the measure of our souls: They shall be tuned to love. Then come, my Sister! come, I pray, With speed put on your woodland dress; And bring no book: for this one day We'll give to idleness.
William Wordsworth
I had thought of calling the next sort of superficial people the Idealists; but I think this implies a humility towards impersonal good they hardly show; so I call them the Autocrats. They are those who give us generally to understand that every modern reform will “work” all right, because they will be there to see. Where they will be, and for how long, they do not explain very clearly. I do not mind their looking forward to numberless lives in succession; for that is the shadow of a human or divine hope. But even a theosophist does not expect to be a vast number of people at once. And these people most certainly propose to be responsible for a whole movement after it has left their hands. Each man promises to be about a thousand policemen. If you ask them how this or that will work, they will answer, “Oh, I would certainly insist on this”; or “I would never go so far as that”; as if they could return to this earth and do what no ghost has ever done quite successfully—force men to forsake their sins. Of these it is enough to say that they do not understand the nature of a law any more than the nature of a dog. If you let loose a law, it will do as a dog does. It will obey its own nature, not yours. Such sense as you have put into the law (or the dog) will be fulfilled. But you will not be able to fulfil a fragment of anything you have forgotten to put into it.
G.K. Chesterton (Eugenics and Other Evils (Illustrated))
His eyes dragged over her. “Arin, your slave looks positively wild.” Lack of sleep made her thoughts broken and shiny, like pieces of mirrors on strings. Cheat’s words spun in her head. Arin tensed beside her. “No offense,” Cheat told him. “It was a compliment to your taste.” “What do you want, Cheat?” Arin said. The man stroked a thumb over his lower lip. “Wine.” He looked straight at Kestrel. “Get some.” The order itself wasn’t important. It was how Cheat had meant it: as the first of many, and how, in the end, they translated into one word: obey. The only thing that kept Kestrel’s face clean of her thoughts was the knowledge that Cheat would take pleasure in any resistance. Yet she couldn’t make herself move. “I’ll get the wine,” Arin said. “No,” Kestrel said. She didn’t want to be left alone with Cheat. “I’ll go.” For an uncertain moment, Arin stood awkwardly. Then he walked to the door and motioned a Herrani girl into the room. “Please escort Kestrel to the wine cellar, then bring her back here.” “Choose a good vintage,” Cheat said to Kestrel. “You’ll know the best.” As she left the room, his eyes followed her, glittering. She returned with a clearly labeled bottle of Valorian wine dated to the year of the Herran War. She placed it on the table in front of the two seated men. Arin’s jaw set, and he shook his head slightly. Cheat lost his grin. “This was the best,” Kestrel said.
Marie Rutkoski (The Winner's Curse (The Winner's Trilogy, #1))
You don’t understand,” my dad said. “They stop you.” “Who? What are you talking about?” my mom asked. “That’s why I was being cautious.” “Who stops you?” “The police. If you’re white, or maybe Oriental, they let you drive however you want. But if you’re not, they stop you.” “Who told you that?” “The guys at the diner. That’s what they say. If you’re black or if you’re brown, they automatically think you’ve done something wrong.” “Rafa, that’s ridiculous. We’ve lived here for fifteen years. We’re citizens.” “The police don’t know that by looking at us. They see a brown face through the windshield and boom! Sirens!” My mom shook her head. “That’s what that was about?” “I didn’t want to give them reason to stop me.” “You were driving like a blind man, Rafa. That will give them reason to stop you.” “Everybody else just has to obey the law. We have to obey it twice as well.” “But that doesn’t mean you have to go twice as slow as everybody else!” The light turned green and my dad brought the car out of first. We cruised under the overpass, a shadow draping over the car like a blanket. “Next time, just try to blend in with everyone else and you’ll be fine,” my mom offered. “The way of the world,” my dad said. “What?” my mom asked as we emerged back into the sunlight. “Just trying to blend in. That’s the way of the world.” “Well, that’s the way of America, at least,” my mom said.
Cristina Henriquez (The Book of Unknown Americans)
All of a sudden, he drew his hand away, and Lillian whimpered in protest. Cursing, Marcus tucked her body beneath his and pulled her face into his shoulder just as the door opened. In a moment of frozen silence breached only by her ragged breaths, Lillian peered out from the concealing shelter of Marcus’s body. She saw with a start of fright that someone was standing there. It was Simon Hunt. A ledger book and a few folders secured with black ribbon were clasped in his hands. Blank-faced, Hunt lowered his gaze to the couple on the floor. To his credit, he managed to retain his composure, though it must have been difficult. The Earl of Westcliff, known to his acquaintances as an eternal proponent of moderation and self-restraint, was the last man Hunt would have expected to be rolling on the study floor with a woman clad in her nightgown. “Pardon, my lord,” Hunt said in a carefully controlled voice. “I did not anticipate that you would be… meeting… with someone at this hour.” Marcus skewered him with a savage stare. “You might try knocking next time.” “You’re right, of course.” Hunt opened his mouth to add something, appeared to think better of it, and cleared his throat roughly. “I’ll leave you here to finish your, er… conversation.” As he withdrew from the room, however, it seemed that he couldn’t keep from ducking his head back in and asking Marcus cryptically, “Once a week, did you say?” “Close the door behind you,” Marcus said icily, and Hunt obeyed with a smothered sound that sounded suspiciously like laughter.
Lisa Kleypas (It Happened One Autumn (Wallflowers, #2))
Power is a curious thing, my lord. Perchance you have considered the riddle I posed you that day in the inn?” “It has crossed my mind a time or two,” Tyrion admitted. “The king, the priest, the rich man—who lives and who dies? Who will the swordsman obey? It’s a riddle without an answer, or rather, too many answers. All depends on the man with the sword.” “And yet he is no one,” Varys said. “He has neither crown nor gold nor favor of the gods, only a piece of pointed steel.” “That piece of steel is the power of life and death.” “Just so … yet if it is the swordsmen who rule us in truth, why do we pretend our kings hold the power? Why should a strong man with a sword ever obey a child king like Joffrey, or a wine-sodden oaf like his father?” “Because these child kings and drunken oafs can call other strong men, with other swords.” “Then these other swordsmen have the true power. Or do they? Whence came their swords? Why do they obey?” Varys smiled. “Some say knowledge is power. Some tell us that all power comes from the gods. Others say it derives from law. Yet that day on the steps of Baelor’s Sept, our godly High Septon and the lawful Queen Regent and your ever-so-knowledgeable servant were as powerless as any cobbler or cooper in the crowd. Who truly killed Eddard Stark, do you think? Joffrey, who gave the command? Ser Ilyn Payne, who swung the sword? Or … another?” Tyrion cocked his head sideways. “Did you mean to answer your damned riddle, or only to make my head ache worse?” Varys smiled. “Here, then. Power resides where men believe it resides. No more and no less.
George R.R. Martin (A Clash of Kings (A Song of Ice and Fire, #2))
Morrow's rush of disgust, temporary as it might prove, had nothing to do with the truths-turned-insults flung out. No. What riled Morrow ran far deeper - was the sheer perversity of Chess's own nature, that unbreakable wilfulness he'd always revered in himself, as sign and source of his own freedom. His stark refusal ever to be bound, to obey aught but his own whim and want. Because while he could walk free and hold a gun Chess Pargeter answered to no man - no man, no law, no damn body, motherfucker. No ideal, no cause, no force but sheer chaos, bound and determined to move unimpeded and burn for the sake of burning. To never submit himself to ghost or hex or priest or even God, 'less he damn well wanted to. No man except Ash Rook, that was - for a time. And after this last betrayal, from now on... not even him. 'Course not, Morrow's anger spoke back, unimpressed by Chess's well-tuned inner litany. That's 'cause you're nothing but a brat who never grew up - a skillet-hopping little hot-pants who knows everything 'bout killing and nothing at all 'bout living. Who spits on friendship, duty and honour not 'cause he's above them, so much as 'cause he don't know what they even mean - same way you don't really grasp how anything's real, 'cept if you want it, or it hurts you. And that's why you ended up givin' everything you had to a man who skinned you alive, then left you stranded down in Hell - 'cause he was what you wanted, and Christ forbid Chess Pargeter ever admit what he wanted was a goddamn bad idea. You made it easy for him, Chess, you damn fool. 'Cause you couldn't believe you deserved anything better. And me? I'd never do that to you, or anyone. Never.
Gemma Files (A Book of Tongues (Hexslinger, #1))
No passion has a greater need of the widest horizon of liberty than has this, none, doubtless, is as despotic; here it is that man likes to command, to be obeyed, to surround himself with slaves compelled to satisfy him; well, whenever you withhold from man the secret means whereby he exhales the dose of despotism Nature instilled in the depths of his heart, he will seek other outlets for it, it will be vented upon nearby objects; it will trouble the government If you would avoid that danger, permit a free flight and rein to those tyrannical desires which, despite himself, torment man ceaselessly: content with having been able to exercise his small dominion in the middle of the harem of sultanas and youths whose submission your good offices and his money procure for him, he will go away appeased and with nothing but fond feelings for a government.
Marquis de Sade (Philosophy in the Bedroom)
She was about to take a step back when his hand slid onto her leg. Slow and lazy. “You don’t wear your scrubs home,” he murmured, his fingers idly stroking just behind her knee, the denim of her jeans no barrier to the sensations sweeping up her leg. Joss willed herself to move but not one damn synapse obeyed. It was as if his fingers had injected them with a paralyzing agent. “No.” Her voice was hushed yet high. Breathy. “It’s against hospital policy.” “Pity.” He smiled at her. “You look hot in them.” If it was possible to orgasm through compliments alone, she’d just moved into the red zone. He was dangerously good for her ego. He was bleary-eyed, rubbing his right hand over his hair, his biceps and abs shifting nicely. A flush of heat surged from the tips of her toes to the top of her head. Sweet baby cheeses. Maybe she was perimenopausal? Thirty-four was young but it wasn’t unheard of…
Amy Andrews (Troy (American Extreme Bull Riders Tour, #5))
Nobody can return to you something that was never yours, to begin with. Let’s trace back to the history of your race: the humans were made for slavery and were found faulty for that purpose. They showed immense energy and willpower only when confronted against tremendous obstacles with no weapons in their hands. With those bare hands, and the wits that exceeded even those of their creators and equalled the ones of mighty gods, they could break mountains. Once the humans earned at least a bit of benevolence from their creators, though, they’d immediately turn into lazy drunkards feasting upon the luxuries of life. They were quite haughty creatures, at that – one could never make them work without posing a certain purpose before their eyes. They should be given an aim they approved of, or else, they’d move no finger! Yet, if such necessities were met, they’d begin to loaf around. Forbidding them to taste those luxuries? Nay, they obeyed not! Hence, their creators cast them down on Earth – a planet inhabited by many other faulty experiments of different alien species, so that their lives would end. Yet even here, the humans defied their creators – instead of dying out, they adapted to the environment they were cast in, due to their boundless wits and the unexplainable willpower that no other species could ever possess. They mated the local species whom they could more or less find a common language with, killed off the obstacles, and conquered the planet as their own. The conquering ambitions of their creators, the boundless wisdom of their gods, and the primal instincts of Earthly nature – all of it meddled in these extraordinary creatures. They were full of instability, unpredictability, wild dreams, and rotten primitivism. Which side they would develop, depended entirely upon their choice. Aye, they had proven faulty to their creators, yet had attained the perfect treasure they required – the freedom. Could they make use of it? – Nay, certainly not… at least not many of them. There are certain individuals among the human race, who are able to well balance their mixed-up nature and grow into worthy people that merit our godly benevolence. However, most of them are quite an interesting bunch whom an ambitious man like me can make good use of. I am half-human with godly and angelic descendance, so I guess, I am worthy to be their sole ruler, their only saviour, their treasured shepherd… The shepherds too make use of their sheep – they guide them, then to consume some of them for wool and meat. Shepherds do not help the sheep for granted – they use their potential to its fullest. I shall be the same kind of a god – I shall help these magnificent creatures to achieve the wildest of their dreams but will use their powers for my own benefit. These poor creatures cannot define their potential alone, they cannot decide what’s the best and the fittest for them! I can achieve that. Free human souls? – Nay, they need no freedom. What they need, is to serve the rightful master, and that rightful master I shall be.
Tamuna Tsertsvadze (Galaxy Pirates)
Body. Soul. Mind. Sensations: the body. Desires: the soul. Reasoning: the mind. To experience sensations: even grazing beasts do that. To let your desires control you: even wild animals do that—and rutting humans, and tyrants (from Phalaris to Nero . . .). To make your mind your guide to what seems best: even people who deny the gods do that. Even people who betray their country. Even people who do <. . .> behind closed doors. If all the rest is common coin, then what is unique to the good man? To welcome with affection what is sent by fate. Not to stain or disturb the spirit within him with a mess of false beliefs. Instead, to preserve it faithfully, by calmly obeying God—saying nothing untrue, doing nothing unjust. And if the others don’t acknowledge it—this life lived with simplicity, humility, cheerfulness—he doesn’t resent them for it, and isn’t deterred from following the road where it leads: to the end of life. An end to be approached in purity, in serenity, in acceptance, in peaceful unity with what must be.
Marcus Aurelius (Meditations)
If I were to speak your kind of language, I would say that man’s only moral commandment is: Thou shalt think. But a ‘moral commandment’ is a contradiction in terms. The moral is the chosen, not the forced; the understood, not the obeyed. The moral is the rational, and reason accepts no commandments. “My morality, the morality of reason, is contained in a single axiom: existence exists—and in a single choice: to live. The rest proceeds from these. To live, man must hold three things as the supreme and ruling values of his life: Reason—Purpose—Self-esteem. Reason, as his only tool of knowledge—Purpose, as his choice of the happiness which that tool must proceed to achieve—Self-esteem, as his inviolate certainty that his mind is competent to think and his person is worthy of happiness, which means: is worthy of living. These three values imply and require all of man’s virtues, and all his virtues pertain to the relation of existence and consciousness: rationality, independence, integrity, honesty, justice, productiveness, pride.
Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)
Cheat wore a Valorian jacket Kestrel was sure she had seen on the governor the night before. He sat at the right hand of the empty head of the dining table, but stood when Kestrel and Arin entered. He approached. His eyes dragged over her. “Arin, your slave looks positively wild.” Lack of sleep made her thoughts broken and shiny, like pieces of mirrors on strings. Cheat’s words spun in her head. Arin tensed beside her. “No offense,” Cheat told him. “It was a compliment to your taste.” “What do you want, Cheat?” Arin said. The man stroked a thumb over his lower lip. “Wine.” He looked straight at Kestrel. “Get some.” The order itself wasn’t important. It was how Cheat had meant it: as the first of many, and how, in the end, they translated into one word: obey. The only thing that kept Kestrel’s face clean of her thoughts was the knowledge that Cheat would take pleasure in any resistance. Yet she couldn’t make herself move. “I’ll get the wine,” Arin said. “No,” Kestrel said. She didn’t want to be left alone with Cheat. “I’ll go.” For an uncertain moment, Arin stood awkwardly. Then he walked to the door and motioned a Herrani girl into the room. “Please escort Kestrel to the wine cellar, then bring her back here.” “Choose a good vintage,” Cheat said to Kestrel. “You’ll know the best.” As she left the room, his eyes followed her, glittering. She returned with a clearly labeled bottle of Valorian wine dated to the year of the Herran War. She placed it on the table in front of the two seated men. Arin’s jaw set, and he shook his head slightly. Cheat lost his grin. “This was the best,” Kestrel said. “Pour.” Cheat shoved his glass toward her. She uncorked the bottle and poured--and kept pouring, even as the red wine flowed over the glass’s rim, across the table, and onto Cheat’s lap. He jumped to his feet, swatting wine from his fine stolen clothes. “Damn you!” “You said I should pour. You didn’t say I should stop.” Kestrel wasn’t sure what would have happened next if Arin hadn’t intervened. “Cheat,” he said, “I’m going to have to ask you to stop playing games with what is mine.
Marie Rutkoski (The Winner's Curse (The Winner's Trilogy, #1))
Get off your horse, Jack." "Why don't you just ride outta here, missy, and I'll forget this ever happened." Willow's voice trembled with fury. "Get off your horse," she repeated. "Slow and easy." Still grinning his contempt, he did as he asked. "That's good. Now, real slow like, take your gunbelt off and toss it my way." "Like hell!" A shot rang out and nicked a chunk of leather from his boot. Cursing, he unbuckled his gun and tossed it at her mare's feet. "Now,strip them britches off, underwear, too," she ordered. "You little shi-" Bang! Jack's hat whizzed off his head. He dropped his pants in a puddle over his boots, trying his best to shelter his privates from her view. "My,my,Jack." Willow laughed humorlessly. "Is that puny thing you're trying to hide the same thing you were threatening me with?" If looks could kill, Willow would have been dead and buried ten times over, then and there. "Take them confounded boots off so's you can get your pants clear off," she ordered in mock exasperation. He wheeled around, gaining a modicum of privacy while he complied. "You're puny all over, Jack. You got the boniest bee-hind I ever did see. You sure you ain't picked up a worm somewheres?" "You're gonna pay for this,you little slut!" "Shut your filthy mouth and pick them pants off the ground and toss 'em over here at my horse's feet. Then you can put your boots back on." He gave the pants a toss, put his boots on, and turned around to face her, cuping his privates in his hands. "Okay,Jack, finish the job. You've been real generous but I'm a greedy cuss. Give me the shirt off your back, too." Cursing, he again turned around and obeyed. "Oh,ah,Jack, you better reach behind you there,and get your hat. I'll let you keep it. We wouldn't want your bald spot to get sunburned." Scofield now stood in nothing but his boots, using his hat to shield his lower half. Humiliated, the gunslinger's eyes burned with bloody intent. Willow suddenly regretted her damnable quick temper and realized the folly of her reckless retaliation. No doubt,the heinous man would seek revenge. But the damage was done and the man was so mad that backing off now would be the same as signing her death warrant. "Step away from your horse and start walking toward the ranch, Scofield." "You're out of your mind!" "Maybe,but I bet you'll think twice before threatening to poke that puny thing at another lady." "You? A lady? Ha!" Willow's temper flared anew. "Walk, Jack. Real fast. Cuz if you don't, I'm gonna use your puny thing for target practice." Her bullet kicked up the dust at his feet and started him on his way.
Charlotte McPherren (Song of the Willow)
AUGUST 19 THE “ACCURSED THINGS” And you, by all means abstain from the accursed things, lest you become accursed when you take of the accursed things, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it. . . . But the children of Israel committed a trespass regarding the accursed things, for Achan . . . took of the accursed things; so the anger of the LORD burned against the children of Israel. —Joshua 6:18; 7:1 (NKJV) We have to leave “accursed things” behind. Led by Joshua, God delivered the city of Jericho into the Israelites’ hands. God just had one requirement: after the city is conquered, the Israelites should leave the “accursed things”—the idols, the spoils, the wicked items that corrupted Jericho—behind. After the victory, most of the Israelites obeyed God’s command. But one man, Achan, “took of the accursed things; so the anger of the LORD burned against the children of Israel.” We have to scan our lives to see if there are items within them not of God. Are we watching, consuming, or participating in things that the enemy can use for our destruction? If so, we have to leave them behind—not only for our sake, but for our children, and our children’s children.   Dear God, help me leave behind the “accursed things.” Break me of any dependencies, and bring me into your light. Amen.
Joshua DuBois (The President's Devotional: The Daily Readings That Inspired President Obama)
The calf is capable of walking quite well now," Dazu said. "He never stumbles." "But I told you to carry him back here," the teacher said. "The first thing a soldier must learn is to obey orders." Every day, the calf grew a little heavier, and every day, Dazu had to struggle a little harder. He would collapse, exhausted, when he finally got to the ranch, and the calf would bound out of his arms, glad to be able to walk on his own and stretch out. When winter rolled around again, Médo handed him a wooden sword and asked him to strike as hard as he could at the practice dummy. Dazu looked with distaste at the crude weapon with no edge, but he swung obediently. The wooden dummy fell in half, cut clean through. He looked at the sword in his hand with wonder. "It's not the sword," his teacher said. "Have you looked at yourself lately?" He brought Dazu to stand in front of a brightly polished shield. The young man could hardly recognize the reflection. His shoulders filled the frame of the mirror. His arms and thighs were twice as thick as he remembered, and his chest bulged over his narrow waist. "A great warrior trusts not his weapons, but himself. When you possess true strength, you can deal a killing blow even if all you have is a blade of grass. "Now you're finally ready to learn from me. But first, go thank the calf for making you strong.
Ken Liu (The Grace of Kings (The Dandelion Dynasty, #1))
Two sailors hauled on ropes, hoisting the jolly boat up to the ship’s side, revealing two apocryphal figures standing in the center of the small craft. At first glance, Sophia only saw clearly the shorter of the two, a gruesome creature with long tangled hair and a painted face, wearing a tight-fitting burlap skirt and a makeshift corset fashioned from fishnet and mollusk shells. The Sea Queen, Sophia reckoned, a smile warming her cheeks as the crew erupted into raucous cheers. A bearded Sea Queen, no less, who bore a striking resemblance to the Aphrodite’s own grizzled steward. Stubb. Sophia craned her neck to spy Stubb’s consort, as the foremast blocked her view of Triton’s visage. She caught only a glimpse of a white toga draped over a bronzed, bare shoulder. She took a jostling step to the side, nearly tripping on a coil of rope. “Foolish mortals! Kneel before your king!” The assembled sailors knelt on cue, giving Sophia a direct view of the Sea King. And even if the blue paint smeared across his forehead or the strands of seaweed dangling from his belt might have disguised him, there was no mistaking that persuasive baritone. Mr. Grayson. There he stood, tall and proud, some twenty feet away from her. Bare-chested, save for a swath of white linen draped from hip to shoulder. Wet locks of hair slicked back from his tanned face, sunlight embossing every contour of his sculpted arms and chest. A pagan god come swaggering down to earth. He caught her eye, and his smile widened to a wolfish grin. Sophia could not for the life of her look away. He hadn’t looked at her like this since…since that night. He’d scarcely looked in her direction at all, and certainly never wearing a smile. The boldness of his gaze made her feel thoroughly unnerved, and virtually undressed. Until the very act of maintaining eye contact became an intimate, verging on indecent, experience. If she kept looking at him, she felt certain he knees would give out. If she looked away, she gave him the victory. There was only one suitable alternative, given the circumstances. With a cheeky wink to acknowledge the joke, Sophia dropped her eyes and curtsied to the King. Mr. Grayson laughed his approval. Her curtsy, the crew’s gesture of fealty-he accepted their obeisance as his due. And why should he not? There was a rightness about it somehow, an unspoken understanding. Here at last was their true leader: the man they would obey without question, the man to whom they’d pledge loyalty, even kneel. This was his ship. “Where’s the owner of this craft?” he called. “Oh, right. Someone told me he’s no fun anymore.” As the men laughed, the Sea King swung over the rail, hoisting what looked to be a mop handle with vague aspirations to become a trident. “Bring forth the virgin voyager!
Tessa Dare (Surrender of a Siren (The Wanton Dairymaid Trilogy, #2))
The Law of the Jungle NOW this is the Law of the Jungle — as old and as true as the sky; And the Wolf that shall keep it may prosper, but the Wolf that shall break it must die. As the creeper that girdles the tree-trunk the Law runneth forward and back — For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack. Wash daily from nose-tip to tail-tip; drink deeply, but never too deep; And remember the night is for hunting, and forget not the day is for sleep. The Jackal may follow the Tiger, but, Cub, when thy whiskers are grown, Remember the Wolf is a Hunter — go forth and get food of thine own. Keep peace withe Lords of the Jungle — the Tiger, the Panther, and Bear. And trouble not Hathi the Silent, and mock not the Boar in his lair. When Pack meets with Pack in the Jungle, and neither will go from the trail, Lie down till the leaders have spoken — it may be fair words shall prevail. When ye fight with a Wolf of the Pack, ye must fight him alone and afar, Lest others take part in the quarrel, and the Pack be diminished by war. The Lair of the Wolf is his refuge, and where he has made him his home, Not even the Head Wolf may enter, not even the Council may come. The Lair of the Wolf is his refuge, but where he has digged it too plain, The Council shall send him a message, and so he shall change it again. If ye kill before midnight, be silent, and wake not the woods with your bay, Lest ye frighten the deer from the crop, and your brothers go empty away. Ye may kill for yourselves, and your mates, and your cubs as they need, and ye can; But kill not for pleasure of killing, and seven times never kill Man! If ye plunder his Kill from a weaker, devour not all in thy pride; Pack-Right is the right of the meanest; so leave him the head and the hide. The Kill of the Pack is the meat of the Pack. Ye must eat where it lies; And no one may carry away of that meat to his lair, or he dies. The Kill of the Wolf is the meat of the Wolf. He may do what he will; But, till he has given permission, the Pack may not eat of that Kill. Cub-Right is the right of the Yearling. From all of his Pack he may claim Full-gorge when the killer has eaten; and none may refuse him the same. Lair-Right is the right of the Mother. From all of her year she may claim One haunch of each kill for her litter, and none may deny her the same. Cave-Right is the right of the Father — to hunt by himself for his own: He is freed of all calls to the Pack; he is judged by the Council alone. Because of his age and his cunning, because of his gripe and his paw, In all that the Law leaveth open, the word of your Head Wolf is Law. Now these are the Laws of the Jungle, and many and mighty are they; But the head and the hoof of the Law and the haunch and the hump is — Obey!
Rudyard Kipling
Through the buzzing in her ears, she heard new sounds from outside, shouting and cursing. All of a sudden the carriage door was wrenched open and someone vaulted inside. Evie squirmed to see who it was. Her remaining breath was expelled in a faint sob as she saw a familiar glitter of dark golden hair. It was Sebastian as she had never seen him before, no longer detached and self-possessed, but in the grip of bone-shaking rage. His eyes were pale and reptilian as his murderous gaze fastened on Eustace, whose breath began to rattle nervously behind the pudgy ladder of his chin. “Give her to me,” Sebastian said, his voice hoarse with fury. “Now, you pile of gutter sludge, or I’ll rip your throat out.” Seeming to realize that Sebastian was eager to carry out the threat, Eustace released his chokehold on Evie. She scrambled toward Sebastian and took in desperate pulls of air. He caught her with a low murmur, his hold gentle but secure. “Easy, love. You’re safe now.” She felt the tremors of rage that ran in continuous thrills through his body. Sebastian sent a lethal glance to Eustace, who was trying to gather his jellylike mass into the far end of the seat. “The next time I see you,” Sebastian said viciously, “no matter what the circumstances, I’m going to kill you. No law, nor weapon, nor God Himself will be able to stop it from happening. So if you value your life, don’t let your path cross mine again.” Leaving Eustace in a quivering heap of speechless fear, Sebastian hauled Evie from the vehicle. She clung to him, still trying to regain her breath as she glanced apprehensively around the scene. It appeared that Cam had been alerted to the fracas, and was keeping her two uncles at bay. Brook was on the ground, while Peregrine was staggering backward from some kind of assault, his beefy countenance turning ruddy from enraged surprise. Swaying as her feet touched the ground, Evie turned her face into her husband’s shoulder. Sebastian was literally steaming, the chilly air striking off his flushed skin and turning his breath into puffs of white. He subjected her to a brief but thorough inspection, his hands running lightly over her, his gaze searching her pale face. His voice was astonishingly tender. “Are you hurt, Evie? Look up at me, love. Yes. Sweetheart… did they do you any injury?” “N-no.” Evie stared at him dazedly. “My uncle Peregrine,” she whispered, “he’s very p-powerful—” “I’ll handle him,” he assured her, and called out to Cam. “Rohan! Come fetch her.” The young man obeyed instantly, approaching Evie with long, fluid strides. He spoke to her with a few foreign-sounding words, his voice soothing her overwrought nerves. She hesitated before going with him, casting a worried glance at Sebastian. “It’s all right,” he said without looking at her, his icy gaze locked on Peregrine’s bullish form. “Go.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil in Winter (Wallflowers, #3))
Travis raised his head from sighting down the rifle as shock radiated through him. Those eyes. Such a vivid blue. It was as if he’d seen them before. But that was impossible. Females didn’t exactly pay them calls on a regular basis. Clearing his throat, he readjusted his rifle. “We don’t cotton to trespassers around here, lady. You best skedaddle back the way you came.” “I will. But not until I say my piece.” She pivoted to face him fully, her lashes lowering for just a moment before she aimed her gaze directly at him again. Even knowing what was coming didn’t stop the jolt from ricocheting through his chest when those piercing eyes latched onto him. “I came to warn you, Travis.” Travis? She knew who he was? Most folks meeting the Archers all at once had no way of knowing him from Crockett or Jim. Yet she said his name with the confidence of recognition. He squinted at her. “Look, lady. I don’t know what kind of game you’re playing, but I want no part of it.” “This is no game. Please, Travis. Just listen.” “You know this gal, Trav?” Out of the corner of his eye, he saw his youngest brother start to lower his rifle. “Hush up, Neill, and hold your line.” The kid obeyed without question, firming up his grip. “The man who wants to buy your land is sending men out here tonight to persuade you to change your mind. They plan to set fire to the place while you sleep and force you to accept the next offer in order to recoup your losses.
Karen Witemeyer (Short-Straw Bride (Archer Brothers, #1))
Look,” she said. They both looked, but almost at once Drinian said in a low voice: “Turn round at once, your Majesties--that’s right, with our backs to the sea. And don’t look as if we were talking about anything important.” “Why, what’s the matter?” said Lucy as she obeyed. “It’ll never do for the sailors to see all that,” said Drinian. “We’ll have men falling in love with a sea-woman, or falling in love with the under-sea country itself, and jumping overboard. I’ve heard of that kind of thing happening before in strange seas. It’s always unlucky to see these people.” “But we used to know them,” said Lucy. “In the old days at Cair Paravel when my brother Peter was High King. They came to the surface and sang at our coronation.” “I think that must have been a different kind, Lu,” said Edmund. “They could live in the air as well as under water. I rather think these can’t. By the look of them they’d have surfaced and started attacking us long ago if they could. They seem very fierce.” “At any rate,” began Drinian, but at that moment two sounds were heard. One was a plop. The other was a voice from the fighting-top shouting, “Man overboard!” Then everyone was busy. Some of the sailors hurried aloft to take in the sail; others hurried below to get to the oars; and Rhince, who was on duty on the poop, began to put the helm hard over so as to come round and back to the man who had gone overboard. But by now everyone knew that it wasn’t strictly a man. It was Reepicheep. “Drat that mouse!” said Drinian. “It’s more trouble than all the rest of the ship’s company put together.
C.S. Lewis (The Voyage of the Dawn Treader (Chronicles of Narnia, #3))
As Christians, we celebrate many holidays and memorials throughout the year. Some we decide to celebrate by referencing events in the Bible. Others are related to events in our personal lives. Still more are pushed upon by this World. There's nothing necessarily wrong with celebrating events that bring us joy or keep important parts of our lives in focus. As a Christian, it is important for me to follow Christ's words and teachings. I do not obey man's intepretations of God's word. I read it and follow it. Its that simple. I dont need an interpreter. Christ is my intermediary. Ive been blessed to have been given the gift of language and... in the Bible, when you read it in Aramaic, there is only ONE event, one memorial that Jesus asks us to remember and thus honor our Savior. And its not His birthday. We are upon that annual event this weekend. For Jesus "blessed and he broke and he said, “Take eat; this is my body, which is broken for your persons; thus you shall do for my Memorial." [1 Cor 11:24] Holidays can be fun times for families to get together and to celebrate life. This weekend lets not lose focus. For this is the one and ONLY holiday that our Christ commands us to memorialize. Its in his words. Its in the Bible. It was important enough for Him to spell it out. It should be important enough for us to listen. Above all other events in our lives, isn't Christ Jesus's sacrifice truly the most magnificent one? Lets remember our Savior and not allow the World to mislead us into over prioritizing any other day than when -He gave His life for us. Truly His act was a gift to mankind that remains matchless.
José N. Harris
She looked at him defiantly, "I know I am not beautiful.I laughed at myself for thinking such impossible things." Rides the Wind was quiet for so long that she wondered if her rush of words had overreached his abilities in English. But just when she started to question him,he turned his own face to the horizon so that she could view only his profile. "When Rides the Wind was young, he danced about the fire like no other brave.It was then that Dancing Waters came to be his woman.She would watch, and her eyes danced with the flames. But one day Rides the Wind went to hunt.His pony fell and crushed his leg. Marcus Whitman fixed the leg, but it would not grow straight.Rides the Wind could dance no more. The fire died in the eyes of Dancing Waters." He encircled her with his arms before continuing. "Walks the Fire sees Rides the Wind when he walks like the wounded buffalo.She sees, but the fire does not die in her eyes.Beautiful is in here," he placed his hand over her heart. "So do not laugh when you think you are beautiful.Rides the Wind sees the fire in your eyes.And to him,you are beautiful." Jesse reached for his hand,and, holding it palm up,she kissed it. He growled, "...and so you give me more of the white man's ways." In a moment of uncharacteristic abandon, Jesse stood on tip-toe and placed a less-than-chaste kiss upon the mouth of her husband.She smiled in spite of the resulting blush on her cheek, reaching up to tug childishly on his flowing hair. Then,to his delight and amazement she spoke the Lakota words: "Mihigna-my husband-Walks the Fire is an obedient wife.If he wishes her to stop this strange touch,he must tell her.Walks the Fire will obey." Rides the Wind took her hand, and they started back to the tepee.As they climbed the hill together he replied, "Many of the white man's ways must be forgotten to live among my people...but not all.
Stephanie Grace Whitson (Walks The Fire (Prairie Winds, #1))
...He can recite to you the nomenclature of a machine gun or grenade launcher and use either one effectively is he must. He digs foxholes and latrines and can apply first aid like a professional. He can march until he is told to stop, or stop until he is told to march. He obeys orders instantly and without hesitation, but he is not without spirit or individual dignity. He is self-sufficient. ...He sometimes forgets to brush his teeth, but never to clean his rifle. He can cool his own meals, mend his own clothes, and fix his own hurts. ...He'll even split his ammunition with you in the midst of battle when you run low. He has learned to use his hands like weapons and weapons like they were his hands. He can save your life- or take it, because that is his job. He will often do twice the work of a civilian, draw half the pay, and still find ironic humor in it all. He has seen more suffering and death than he should have in his short lifetime. He has wept in public and in private, for friends who have fallen in combat and is unashamed. He feels every note of the National Anthem vibrate through his body while at rigid attention, while tempering the burning desire to "square-away" those around him who haven't bothered to stand, remove their hat, or even stop talking. ...Just as did his father, grandfather, and great-grandfather, he is paying the price for our freedom. Beardless or not, he is not a boy. He is the American Fighting Man that has kept this country free for over two hundred years. He has asked nothing in return, except our friendship and understanding. Remember him, always, for he has earned our respect and admiration with his blood. And now we even have women over there in danger, doing their part in this tradition of going to war when our nation calls us to do so. As you go to bed tonight, remember this. A short lull, a little shade, and a picture of loved ones in their helmets.
Sarah Palin (America by Heart: Reflections on Family, Faith, and Flag)
...Because the sacred fire that lights all nature liveliest of all in its own image glows. All these prerogatives the human creature possesses, and if one of them should fail, he must diminish from his noble stature. Sin only can disenfranchise him, and veil his likeness to the Highest Good; whereby the light in him is lessened and grows pale. Ne'er can he win back dignities so high till the void made by guilt be all filled in with just amends paid for by illicit joy. Now, when your nature as a whole did sin in its first root, it lost these great awards, and lost the Eden of its origin; nor might they be recovered afterwards by any means, as if thou search thou'lt see, except by crossing one of these two fords; either must God, of his sole courtesy, remit, or man must pay with all that's his, the debt of sin in its entirety. Within the Eternal Counsel's deep abyss rivet thine eye, and with a heed as good as thou canst give me, do thou follow this. Man from his finite assets never could make satisfaction; ne'er could he abase him so low, obey thereafter all he would, as he'd by disobedience sought to raise him; and for this cause man might not pay his due himself, nor from the debtor's roll erase him. Needs then must God, by his own ways, renew man's proper life, and reinstate him so; his ways I say - by one, or both of two. And since the doer's actions ever show more gracious as the style of them makes plain the goodness of the heart from which they flow, that most high Goodness which is God was fain - even God, whose impress Heaven and earth display - by all His ways to lift you up again; nor, between final night and primal day, was e'er proceeding so majestical and high, nor shall not be, by either way; for God's self-giving, which made possible that man should raise himself, showed more largesse than if by naked power He'd cancelled all; and every other means would have been less than justice, if it had not pleased God's Son to be humiliate in fleshliness.
Dante Alighieri (Paradiso (The Divine Comedy, #3))
Once upon a time there was a beautiful princess who was admired by all, but no one dared to ask for her hand in marriage. In despair, the king consulted the god Apollo. He told him that Psyche should be dressed in mourning and left alone on top of a mountain. Before daybreak, a serpent would come to meet and marry her. The king obeyed, and all night the princess waited for her husband to appear, deathly afraid and freezing cold. Finally, she slept. When she awoke, she found herself crowned a queen in a beautiful palace. Every night her husband came to her and they made love, but he had imposed one condition: Psyche could have all she desired, but she had to trust him completely and could never see his face.” How awful, I think, but I don’t dare interrupt him. “The young woman lived happily for a long time. She had comfort, affection, joy, and she was in love with the man who visited her every night. However, occasionally she was afraid that she was married to a hideous serpent. Early one morning, while her husband slept, she lit a lantern and saw Eros, a man of incredible beauty, lying by her side. The light woke him, and seeing that the woman he loved was unable to fulfill his one request, Eros vanished. Desperate to get her lover back, Psyche submitted to a series of tasks given to her by Aphrodite, Eros’s mother. Needless to say, her mother-in-law was incredibly jealous of Psyche’s beauty and she did everything she could to thwart the couple’s reconciliation. In one of the tasks, Psyche opened a box that makes her fall into a deep sleep.” I grow anxious to find out how the story will end. “Eros was also in love and regretted not having been more lenient toward his wife. He managed to enter the castle and wake her with the tip of his arrow. ‘You nearly died because of your curiosity,’ he told her. ‘You sought security in knowledge and destroyed our relationship.’ But in love, nothing is destroyed forever. Imbued with this conviction, they go to Zeus, the god of gods, and beg that their union never be undone. Zeus passionately pleaded the cause of the lovers with strong arguments and threats until he gained Aphrodite’s support. From that day on, Psyche (our unconscious, but logical, side) and Eros (love) were together forever.” I pour another glass of wine. I rest my head on his shoulder. “Those who cannot accept this, and who always try to find an explanation for magical and mysterious human relationships, will miss the best part of life.
Paulo Coelho (Adultery)
Kneading her hand, touching her ring, Alexander said, “In America, when two people get married, they say their vows. Do you know what those are?” Tatiana was hardly listening. She had been thinking of America. She wanted to ask Alexander if there were villages in America, villages with cabins on the banks of rivers. In America where there was no war, and no hunger, and no Dimitri. “Are you listening? The priest says, ‘Do you, Alexander, take this woman to be your lawfully wedded wife?’” “Lawfully bedded?” He laughed. “That too. No, lawfully wedded. And then we say our vows. Do you want me to tell you what they are?” “What what are?” Tatiana brought his fingers to her lips. “You have to repeat after me.” “Repeat after me.” “I, Tatiana Metanova, take this man to be my husband—” “I, Tatiana Metanova, take this great man to be my husband.” Kissing his thumb and forefinger and middle finger. He had wonderful fingers. “To live together in the covenant of marriage—” “To live together in the covenant of marriage.” Kissing his ring finger. “I will love him, comfort him, honor and keep him—” “I will love him, comfort him, honor and keep him.” Kissing the ring on his ring finger. Kissing his little finger. “And obey him.” Tatiana smiled, rolling her eyes. “And obey him.” “And, forsaking all others, be faithful to him until death do us part—” Kissing the palm of his hand. Wiping tears from her face with the palm of his hand. “And, forsaking all others, be faithful to him until death do us part.” “I, Alexander Barrington, take this woman to be my wife.” “Don’t, Shura.” Sitting on top of him, rubbing her breasts into his chest. “To live together in the covenant of marriage—” Kissing the middle of his chest. “I will love her”—his voice cracked—“love her, comfort her, honor, and keep her—” Pressing her cheek to his chest and listening for the iambic rhyme of his heart. “And, forsaking all others, be faithful to her until—” “Don’t, Shura.” His chest wet from her tears. “Please.” His hands above his head. “There are things worse than death.” Her heart full, overwhelmed. Remembering her mother’s body tilted over her sewing. Remembering Marina’s last words, to the end saying, I don’t want to die…and not feel just once what you feel. Remembering a laughing Dasha braiding her young hair already a lifetime ago. “Oh, yes? Like what?” He didn’t reply. She understood anyway. “I’d rather have a bad life in the Soviet Union than a good death. Wouldn’t you?” “If it was a life with you, then yes.
Paullina Simons (The Bronze Horseman (The Bronze Horseman, #1))
IT’S ONLY SOUND Let me ask you an honest question. Is your music subject to God’s approval? If you discovered that He desired for you to listen to a different kind of music, would you obey willingly and gladly? Or would you resist and cling to “what you like”? Recently in a counseling session, I was speaking with a teenage young man about the power of music. After some thought about how strongly his music was holding on to his heart, he lifted his head, sort of chuckled and said, “It’s kind of strange when you really think about it…it’s only music…it’s only sound.” Oh, but how powerful that sound is! Just try to take away or suggest danger in the favorite CD or the favorite CCM group of a supposedly “surrendered” Christian. You’ll get everything from rage to ridicule—real fruits of the Spirit—all qualities that are produced by just such “good, godly music.” I’m being intentionally sarcastic to cause you to think. If pop-styled Christian music is so spiritually effective, why aren’t we having revival? Why isn’t it producing more holy, more separated, more godly individuals? Why are young people leaving Christianity in record numbers? Why do we have to have the world’s music? Should music really be such a stronghold in the Christian heart or in the local church? Should such self-absorption be the guiding force of our choices in entertainment? Should we view our music as entertainment at all? Does God really like “all kinds” of music? Music has a much higher purpose than our pleasure. Reducing music to mere entertainment would be something like asking a brain surgeon to roast marshmallows for a living. No, music is much too powerful and spiritually significant to reduce it to a petty place of pleasure. First Corinthians 10:14 admonishes us, “Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry.” Again in Colossians 3:5 we’re told to, “Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth; fornication, uncleanness, inordinate affection, evil concupiscence, and covetousness, which is idolatry.” God commands us to “mortify” or “put to death” our “members.” Anything less than full surrender of our bodies (including our ears) to God is a subtle form of idolatry. Is music an idol in your life? Is it a stronghold? Are you addicted to your style, your group, your sound? Do you find yourself putting up a wall of defense in your heart, even as you read these words? Is your primary concern that it “makes you feel good” or that you listen to “what you like”? Think about it. It’s only sound.
Cary Schmidt (Music Matters: Understanding and Applying the Amazing Power of Godly Music)
I worry about you too,” I said softly as I caressed her head resting against my chest. “You look tired.” Lark didn’t speak for a minute. When she finally looked at me, I saw a lot of different emotions swirling in those bright green eyes. “I feel like shit. I’m tired and dizzy. I can’t eat ninety percent of the food I used to eat. I feel awful, but I’m afraid to complain.” “Why?” “Maddy just had her baby and she was so tough about the whole thing. I’m surprised she didn’t give birth in the middle of the grocery store then go back to picking up things for dinner. Next to her, I’m a weakling. Also, Farah is going to be all brave and awesome too. I don’t want to be the whiner.” “First of all, Maddy’s got that natural breeder look about her. Some chicks are like that and you can’t let the exception be your rule. Besides, you’re having twins. You have more baby cooking to do than she did, so screw comparisons.” “I just don’t want people to think less of me.” “By people, do you mean Aaron?” “We barely met and got married and now I’m getting fat and I’m tired all the time. I don’t want him to lose interest.” “Oh, Lark, you’re so fucking stupid sometimes.” “Yeah, I know,” she said, grinning. “We have that in common.” “So true.” “Mom said that I’m like her and she had a guy like Aaron and she suffocated him and he ditched her. I know Mom sucks, but what if she’s right and I wear down Aaron and he stops loving me?” “Any man who would want Mom must be shit. Aaron isn’t shit.” “I know, but I get scared of messing up everything I have.” Kissing her forehead, I stood up and walked to the bedroom door. “Hey, Mister Clean, get over here.” Laughing, Lark followed me into the hallway where Aaron appeared, clearly loving his new nickname. “Listen up, Yul Brynner,” I said, sending Lark into giggles. “My sister is cooking up two kids that you stuck inside her. She needs more damn love than you’re giving. If you don’t do a better job of babying her, I’m going to have to replace you. Hmm, I just saw this guy Jake that I knew from high school. He’s ripped and works at the gym. The gym, Aaron.” My brother-in-law stared unaffected until I finished then he gazed down at his wife. Lark must have known what was coming because she started giggling. “My sweet muse,” he murmured and she laughed harder, “do you need more love than I’m giving?” Aaron swept Lark into his arms and cradled her like a kid. “Poor thing. I’ll just need to pay more attention.” As he kissed all over her, Lark stopped giggling and began moaning affirmations. “Good thing you obeyed because I think Jake might be gay.” After giving me a wink, Aaron gestured for me to go away. I was the one to obey this time. Leaving them to cuddle and more in the bedroom, I watched television and finished the popcorn. Professor joined me, but Pollack was wary. I think it was because I was always barking at her. In my defense, she started it.
Bijou Hunter (Damaged and the Outlaw (Damaged, #4))
Come on, lovey, open up. These buckets is heavy.” The plea accompanied another tapping. “Patience, Molly.” Christopher paused for a brief moment, gathering the towel about him again. Then his muscles flexed, and if she had found the breath, Erienne would have shrieked as he lifted her and dumped her onto the bed. She half raised with her mouth open to hotly voice her objection to whatever he had in mind, but he flung the bedcovers over her head, squelching comment. “Lie still.” His whisper bore a tone of command that could prompt immediate obedience from even the most reluctant. Erienne froze, and with a smile Christopher reached across to turn down the other side of the bed to make it seem as if he had just left it. Frantic visions involving her possible fate flew through Erienne’s mind. She considered the horrible humiliation she would suffer if she were discovered in the man’s bed. Her fears burgeoned, her rage peaked, and she threw back the covers, intending to escape the trap he laid for her. In the next brief second she caught her breath sharply and snatched the covers back over her head again, for the sight of him standing stark naked beside the chair where his clothes were draped was too much for her virgin eyes to bear. It had been no more than a glimpse, but the vision of his tall, tanned, wide-shouldered form bathed in the pinkish light of the rising sun was forever branded in her brain. Christopher chuckled softly as Erienne curled into the bed and finally obeyed his warning. He slipped on his breeches, secured them, and moved across the room to unlock the door. Molly knew her trade and her competition, and the village of Mawbry suited her well, since there was an absolute lack of the latter. When Christopher opened the portal, she was through it in a trice and shrugging out of the yoke that bore the pails. Pressing herself tightly against the male form, she rubbed her fingers through the hair on his chest and fluttered her lashes. “Oh, lovey, ye are a wondrous sight for any girl to behold.” “I’ve already told you, Molly. I have no need of yer services,” Christopher stated bluntly. “I only want the water.” “Ah, come now, lovey,” she crooned. “I knows ye’ve been away ter sea and needs a li’l tussle in bed. Why, with such a man as yerself, I’d be more’n willin’ ter give ye all ye need without a hint o’ a coin.” Christopher swept his hand toward the mentioned furnishing, drawing the maid’s eyes to it. “I already have all I desire. Now be along with you.” Molly’s dark eyes widened in surprise as she turned to stare at the bed. Unable to mistake the curvaceous form hidden beneath the quilt, she straightened indignantly and with a swish of her skirts was gone from the room, slamming the door behind her. Erienne waited, not daring to come out from beneath the covering until Christopher tapped her on the shoulder. “ ’Tis safe now. You can come out.” “Are you dressed?” she asked cautiously, her voice muffled beneath the covers. Christopher chuckled. “I’ve got my breeches on, if that’s what you’re worried about." -Molly, Christopher, & Erienne
Kathleen E. Woodiwiss (A Rose in Winter)
The Monk in the Kitchen I ORDER is a lovely thing; On disarray it lays its wing, Teaching simplicity to sing. It has a meek and lowly grace, Quiet as a nun's face. Lo—I will have thee in this place! Tranquil well of deep delight, All things that shine through thee appear As stones through water, sweetly clear. Thou clarity, That with angelic charity Revealest beauty where thou art, Spread thyself like a clean pool. Then all the things that in thee are, Shall seem more spiritual and fair, Reflection from serener air— Sunken shapes of many a star In the high heavens set afar. II Ye stolid, homely, visible things, Above you all brood glorious wings Of your deep entities, set high, Like slow moons in a hidden sky. But you, their likenesses, are spent Upon another element. Truly ye are but seemings— The shadowy cast-oft gleamings Of bright solidities. Ye seem Soft as water, vague as dream; Image, cast in a shifting stream. III What are ye? I know not. Brazen pan and iron pot, Yellow brick and gray flag-stone That my feet have trod upon— Ye seem to me Vessels of bright mystery. For ye do bear a shape, and so Though ye were made by man, I know An inner Spirit also made, And ye his breathings have obeyed. IV Shape, the strong and awful Spirit, Laid his ancient hand on you. He waste chaos doth inherit; He can alter and subdue. Verily, he doth lift up Matter, like a sacred cup. Into deep substance he reached, and lo Where ye were not, ye were; and so Out of useless nothing, ye Groaned and laughed and came to be. And I use you, as I can, Wonderful uses, made for man, Iron pot and brazen pan. V What are ye? I know not; Nor what I really do When I move and govern you. There is no small work unto God. He required of us greatness; Of his least creature A high angelic nature, Stature superb and bright completeness. He sets to us no humble duty. Each act that he would have us do Is haloed round with strangest beauty; Terrific deeds and cosmic tasks Of his plainest child he asks. When I polish the brazen pan I hear a creature laugh afar In the gardens of a star, And from his burning presence run Flaming wheels of many a sun. Whoever makes a thing more bright, He is an angel of all light. When I cleanse this earthen floor My spirit leaps to see Bright garments trailing over it, A cleanness made by me. Purger of all men's thoughts and ways, With labor do I sound Thy praise, My work is done for Thee. Whoever makes a thing more bright, He is an angel of all light. Therefore let me spread abroad The beautiful cleanness of my God. VI One time in the cool of dawn Angels came and worked with me. The air was soft with many a wing. They laughed amid my solitude And cast bright looks on everything. Sweetly of me did they ask That they might do my common task And all were beautiful—but one With garments whiter than the sun Had such a face Of deep, remembered grace; That when I saw I cried—"Thou art The great Blood-Brother of my heart. Where have I seen thee?"—And he said, "When we are dancing round God's throne, How often thou art there. Beauties from thy hands have flown Like white doves wheeling in mid air. Nay—thy soul remembers not? Work on, and cleanse thy iron pot.
Anna Hempstead Branch
THE INSTRUCTION OF PTAHHOTEP Part II If you are one among guests At the table of one greater than you, Take what he gives as it is set before you; Look at what is before you, Don’t shoot many glances at him, Molesting him offends the ka. Don’t speak to him until he summons, One does not know what may displease; Speak when he has addressed you, Then your words will please the heart. The nobleman, when he is behind food, Behaves as his ka commands him; He will give to him whom he favors, It is the custom when night has come. It is the ka that makes his hands reach out, The great man gives to the chosen man; Thus eating is under the counsel of god, A fool is who complains of it. If you are a man of trust, Sent by one great man to another, Adhere to the nature of him who sent you. Give his message as he said it. Guard against reviling speech, Which embroils one great with another; Keep to the truth, don't exceed it, But an outburst should not be repeated. Do not malign anyone, Great or small, the ka abhors it. If you plow and there’s growth in the field, And god lets it prosper in your hand, Do not boast at your neighbors’ side, One has great respect for the silent man: Man of character is man of wealth. If he robs he is like a crocodile in court. Don’t impose on one who is childless, Neither decry nor boast of it; There is many a father who has grief, And a mother of children less content than another; It is the lonely whom god fosters, While the family man prays for a follower. If you are poor, serve a man of worth, That all your conduct may be well with the god. Do not recall if he once was poor, Don’t be arrogant toward him For knowing his former state; Respect him for what has accrued to him. For wealth does not come by itself. It is their law for him whom they love, His gain, he gathered it himself ; It is the god who makes him worthy And protects him while he sleeps. Follow your heart as long as you live, Do no more than is required, Do not shorten the time of “follow-the-heart,” Trimming its moment offends the ka Don’t waste time on daily cares Beyond providing for your household; When wealth has come, follow your heart, Wealth does no good if one is glum! If you are a man of worth And produce a son by the grace of god, If he is straight, takes after you, Takes good care of your possessions. Do for him all that is good, He is your son, your ka begot him, Don’t withdraw your heart from him. But an offspring can make trouble: If he strays, neglects your counsel, Disobeys all that is said, His mouth spouting evil speech, Punish him for all his talk They hate him who crosses you, His guilt was fated in the womb; He whom they guide can not go wrong, Whom they make boatless can not cross. If you are in the antechamber, Stand and sit as fits your rank Which was assigned you the first day. Do not trespass — you will be turned back, Keen is the face to him who enters announced, Spacious the seat of him who has been called. The antechamber has a rule, All behavior is by measure; It is the god who gives advancement, He who uses elbows is not helped. If you are among the people, Gain supporters through being trusted The trusted man who does not vent his belly’s speech, He will himself become a leader, A man of means — what is he like ? Your name is good, you are not maligned, Your body is sleek, your face benign, One praises you without your knowing. He whose heart obeys his belly Puts contempt of himself in place of love, His heart is bald, his body unanointed; The great-hearted is god-given, He who obeys his belly belongs to the enemy.
Miriam Lichtheim (Ancient Egyptian Literature, Volume I: The Old and Middle Kingdoms)
In Shushan the citadel there was a certain Jew whose name was Mordecai the son of Jair, the son of Shimei, the son of Kish, a Benjamite. Kish had been carried away from Jerusalem with the captives who had been captured with Jeconiah king of Judah, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away. Esther 2:5-6 Mordecai is a Jew living in Shushan (remember from last week — this is the city that Darius established as the capital). His great-grandfather is Kish the Benjamite, who was brought to Persia / Babylon during the Babylonian captivity. Even though King Cyrus ended the captivity many years ago, many Jews have remained in Persia. Mordecai’s family was among them. Mordecai’s heritage is an vital part of God’s plan, so let’s be careful not to over look this important detail. God always has a remnant of people. Even though Mordecai is no longer captive to the will of man keeping him in exile, he is still captive to the will of God. As a result of his obedience to God, Mordecai remained in Persia even after he was free to leave. God has promised to protect His people, and His plan is in action. Mordecai is an important part of that plan! Also important to note is that this the historian’s first mention of Jews living in Persia. Mordecai descending from Kish the Benjamite is interesting, because another important biblical figure also descended from Kish: Israel’s first king, Saul. Saul was Kish’s son (1 Samuel 9:1). While this point may not seem important in a history of Ahasuerus, the ancestry of this Jew is very important in the history of Persia. Mordecai’s most important connection is about to be introduced to us: his cousin, Esther. “And Mordecai had brought up Hadassah, that is, Esther, his uncle’s daughter, for she had neither father nor mother. The young woman was lovely and beautiful. When her father and mother died, Mordecai took her as his own daughter.” Esther 2:7 Ahasuerus is not the only one in Persia busy preparing; Mordecai is preparing as well. For many years now, he has been preparing Esther, raising her for the future that God intended for her. As you prepare, consider that you might be preparing for a future you do not know anything about; and that you may be preparing someone other than yourself. Mordecai’s first step was to obey God. Certainly it was God who told him to stay with Esther in Persia, even after her parents had died. We are never told that Mordecai had married; what reason was there for him to stay in Persia? Even so, Mordecai stayed in Persia with Esther and raised her as his own daughter. Raising her was a process, and he had to depend on the Lord to know the right thing to do. He had no way of predicting what would happen in her life or his, but he was obedient during the process (remember Jeremiah 29?). Mordecai was preparing Esther for a future he did not know anything about yet, but Mordecai knew something that we need to keep in our hearts as well: serving God every day will develop qualities in us that will serve us well, whatever the future may hold. Mordecai was preparing Esther to be faithful to God, knowing that quality could only help her in her life. Mordecai did not know what God had in store for Esther — but he did know that God had a plan for her, just as He has a plan for all of us. Mordecai poured his life into her. Is there someone that you are supposed to be pouring your life into? Perhaps while reading this history, you are identifying with Esther. Maybe you are an “Esther”, but consider that you may be a “Mordecai”. It is likely you will identify with both of them at different seasons in your life. Pray that you will be able to discern those seasons. Mordecai and Esther are cousins. Sometime after the Jews were carried away to Persia, Esther’s parents died. Out of the heartbreaking tragedy of losing her parents, God’s providence was still at work. His word promises that in the hands of the Lord, “all things work together for good to those who
Jennifer Spivey (Esther: Reflections From An Unexpected Life)
Very often, we really do want to help the people around us however we can, but we get so focused on finding a quick solution to the external behavior that we overlook the real problem. Here’s an example. If a friend struggles with anger, we find out what makes him angry, and then keep him away from the things that provoke his anger (e.g., don’t drive during rush hour, interact with your boss as little as possible, avoid talking politics). But changing the external situation doesn’t change his heart. In reality, his anger is rooted in his heart, and that anger will find a way to express itself even if his circumstances change. When Jesus’s disciples started eating without going through the necessary cleansing rituals, the Pharisees accused them of defiling themselves. But Jesus’s response calls us to look beyond the external to what is going on in the heart: “Whatever goes into a person from outside cannot defile him, since it enters not his heart but his stomach, and is expelled?” (Thus he declared all foods clean.) And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person. (Mark 7:18–23) Every struggle with sin that we could possibly encounter in our own lives or in the lives of the people around us are represented in the list Jesus offered here: evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, and foolishness. Jesus said that these things come from within. In other words, if we are trying to address these problems by regulating a person’s circumstances or behavior, then we are wasting our time. These things come “out of the heart of man.” Whatever help we can offer people who are struggling with sin has to be aimed at transforming hearts, not behavior. 5. Why do you think we tend to focus on the external circumstances and behavior when we try to help people change? 6. Using your own words, try to explain why it is essential to get to the heart of the problem rather than merely addressing the circumstances and behavior. Transformed by the Gospel So how do we change a person’s heart? It’s impossible. We might be able to restrain a person’s angry outbursts by tying him up and gagging him, but we are powerless to change a person’s heart. This is where God’s plan of redemption comes into play. The gospel is not merely about “getting us saved,” as if we simply pray a prayer and are immediately transported into heaven. God describes “salvation” and the transformation of the Christian life like this: I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules. (Ezek. 36:26–27)
Francis Chan (Multiply: Disciples Making Disciples)
TO READ: Exodus 14:5-31 STAND STILL AND GET MOVING But Moses told the people, “Don’t be afraid. Just stand where you are and watch the LORD rescue you. The Egyptians that you see today will never be seen again. The LORD himself will fight for you. You won’t have to lift a finger in your defense!” Then the LORD said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the people to get moving!” EXODUS 14:13-15 It’s amazing how quickly men forget! Only a few days after begging the Israelites to leave, following the dreadful disaster of the death of the firstborn, Pharaoh and his men regretted the decision. “ ‘What have we done, letting all these slaves get away?’ they asked” (Exod. 14:5). So the Egyptians mobilized the army and took off after the escaping slaves. Meanwhile, when the Israelites realized the Egyptian armies were coming after them, they turned on Moses and accused him of leading them into the wilderness against their will, asserting that “Egyptian slavery was far better than dying out here in the wilderness!” (14:12). With remarkable faith and confidence, Moses told the panicking people, “Don’t be afraid. Just stand where you are and watch the Lord rescue you” (14:13). So that is precisely what the people did—probably while paralyzed with fear. But then the Lord commanded Moses, “Tell the people to get moving!” (14:15). So Moses, having just told them to stand still, now told them to get moving! When Moses told the people to stand still, he was stressing that “the Lord himself will fight for you. You won’t have to lift a finger in your defense” (14:14). As things turned out, he was quite right! But at the same time, in order for them to see what God would do, it was necessary for them to move through the opened waters to the other side of the sea. There are things in life that only God can handle and situations in daily experience for which no man has an answer. But God has the answers. Recognition of this sometimes leads a man to “stand still” and see what God can and will do. It is a matter of trust, of faith. At the same time, while man cannot solve his problems, God may tell him to get moving so that God can solve them. Then it is a matter of obedience. In fact, all spiritual experience is about faith and obedience. The two are not incompatible. The power to obey becomes available as we trust God to act. Without faith, there will be no obedience, and without obedience there is evidently no faith. So, as the old hymn says, “trust and obey.” Or, if you prefer, stand still and get moving.
Stuart Briscoe (The One Year Devotions for Men)
We may imagine a dialogue between the law of God and a sinful man. ‘Man,’ says the law of God, ‘have you obeyed my commands?’ ‘No,’ says the sinner, ‘I have transgressed them in thought, word, and deed.’ ‘Well, then, sinner,’ says the law, ‘have you paid the penalty which I have pronounced upon those who have disobeyed? Have you died in the sense that I meant when I said, “The soul that sinneth it shall die”?’ ‘Yes,’ says the sinner, ‘I have died. That penalty that you pronounced upon my sin has been paid.’ ‘What do you mean,’ says the law, ‘by saying that you have died? You do not look as though you had died. You look as though you were very much alive.’ ‘Yes,’ says the sinner, ‘I have died. I died there on the cross outside the walls of Jerusalem; for Jesus died there as my representative and my substitute. I died there so far as the penalty of the law was concerned.’ ‘You say Christ is your representative and substitute,’ says the law. ‘Then I have indeed no further claim of penalty against you. The curse which I pronounced against your sin has indeed been fulfilled. My threatenings are very terrible, but I have nothing to say against those for whom Christ died.
J. Gresham Machen
God creates man and woman to cherish their shared equality while complementing their various differences..Most people view marriage as a means of self-fulfillment accompanied by sexual satisfaction..The husband is the head of his wife? Wives should submit to their husbands? Are you serious?.In our limited understanding, we hear [these] words and we recoil in disgust..As soon as we hear the word submission alongside the previous picture of headship, we immediately think in terms of inferiority and superiority, subordination and domination..God made clear from the start that men and women are equal in dignity, value and worth..[submission] means to yield to another in love..The three persons of the Trinity are equally diving..Yet the Son submits to the Father..this doesn't mean that God the Father is dominating and that God the Son is cruelly forced into compulsory subordination. Rather, the Son gladly submits to the Father in the context of close relationship..submission is not a burden to bear..Onlookers will observe a wife joyfully and continually experiencing her husband's sacrificial love for her..the world will realize that following Christ is not a matter of duty. Instead, it is a means to full, eternal, and absolute delight..the first sin occurred..as a response to a gender-specific test..the man sits silently by-- like a wimp..the man has the audacity to blame his wife..the first spineless abdication of a man's responsibility to love, serve, protect, and care for his wife..Sure, through a job a man provide[s] for the physical needs of his wife, but..that same job often prevents him from providing for her spiritual, emotional, and relational needs..He never asks how she feels, and he doesn't know what's going on in her heart. He may think he's a man because of his achievements at work and accomplishments in life, but in reality he's acting like a wimp who has abdicated his most important responsibility on earth: the spiritual leadership of his wife..The work of Satan in Genesis 3 is a foundational attack not just upon humanity in general but specifically upon men, women, and marriage..For husbands will waffle back and forth between abdicating their responsibility to love and abusing their authority to lead. Wives, in response, will distrust such love and defy such leadership. In the process they'll completely undercut how Christ's gracious sacrifice on the cross compels glad submission in the church..Headship is not an opportunity for us to control our wives; it is a responsibility to die for them..[Husbands], don't love our wives based upon what we get from them..Husbands, love your wives not because of who they are, but because of who Christ is. He loves them deeply, and our responsibility is to reflect his love..the Bible is not saying a wife is not guilty for sin in her own life. Yet the Bible is saying a husband is responsible for the spiritual care of his wife. When she struggles with sin, or when they struggle in marriage, he is ultimately responsible..If we are harsh with our wives, we will show the world that Christ is cruel with his people..God's Word is subtly yet clearly pointing out that God has created women with a unique need to be loved and men with a unique need to be respected..Might such a wife be buying into the unbiblical lie that respect is based purely upon performance? So wives, see yourselves in a complementary, not competitive, relationship with your husband..we cannot pick and choose where to obey God.
David Platt (A Compassionate Call to Counter Culture in a World of Poverty, Same-Sex Marriage, Racism, Sex Slavery, Immigration, Abortion, Persecution, Orphans and Pornography)
Our bodies have been created not only by God but also for God..We are driven today by whatever can bring our bodies the most pleasure. What can we eat, touch, watch, do listen to, or engage in to satisfy the cravings of our bodies?..in his love, gives us boundaries for our bodies: he loves us and knows what is best for us..[there are] clear and critical distinctions between different types of laws in Leviticus. Some of the laws are civil in nature, and they specifically pertain to the government of ancient Israel..Other laws are ceremonial..However, various moral laws..are explicitly reiterated in the New Testament..Jesus himself teaches that the only God-honoring alternative to marriage between a man and a woman is singleness..the Bible also prohibits all sexual looking and thinking outside of marriage between a husband and a wife..it is sinful even to look at someone who is not your husband or wife and entertain sexual thoughts about that person..it is also wrong to provoke sexual desires in others outside of marriage..God prohibits any kind of crude speech, humor, or entertainment that remotely revolves around sexual immorality..often watch movies and shows, read books and articles, and visit Internet sites that highlight, display, promote, or make light of sexual immorality..God prohibits sexual worship-- the idolization of sex and infatuation with sexual activity as a fundamental means to personal fulfillment..Don't rationalize it, and don't reason with it-- run from it. Flee it as fast as you can..We all have a sinful tendency to turn aside from God's ways to our wants. This tendency has an inevitable effect on our sexuality..every one of us is born with a bent toward sexual sin. But just because we have that bent doesn't mean we must act upon it. We live in a culture that assumes a natural explanation implies a moral obligation. If you were born with a desire, then it's essential to your nature to carry it out. This is one reason why our contemporary discussion of sexuality is wrongly framed as an issue of civil rights..Ethnic identity is a morally neutral attribute..Sexual activity is a morally chosen behavior..our sexual behavior is a moral decision, and just because we are inclined to certain behaviors does not make such behaviors right. His disposition toward a behavior does not mean justification for that behavior. "That's the way he is" doesn't mean "that's how he should act." Adultery isn't inevitable; it's immoral. This applies to all sexual behavior that deviates from God's design..We do not always choose our temptations. But we do choose our reactions to those temptations..the assumption that God's Word is subject to human judgement..Instead of obeying what God has said, we question whether God has said it..as soon as we advocate homosexual activity, we undercut biblical authority..we are undermining the integrity of the entire gospel..We take this created gift called sex and use it to question the Creator God, who gave us the gift in the first place..[Jesus] was the most fully human, fully complete person who ever lived, and he was never married. He never indulged in any sort of sexual immorality..This was not a resurrection merely of Jesus' spirit or soul but of his body..Repentance like this doesn't mean total perfection, but it does mean a new direction..in a culture that virtually equates identity with sexuality..Naturally this becomes our perception of ourselves, and we subsequently view everything in our lives through this grid..When you turn to Christ, your entire identity is changed. You are in Christ, and Christ is in you. Your identity is no longer as a heterosexual or a homosexual, an addict or an adulterer.
David Platt (A Compassionate Call to Counter Culture in a World of Poverty, Same-Sex Marriage, Racism, Sex Slavery, Immigration, Abortion, Persecution, Orphans and Pornography)
Christ makes clear that Christianity is not a path to more comforts, higher status, or greater ease in this world..Here are the days when holding fasting to the gospel, actually believing the Bible, and putting it into practice will mean risking your reputation, sacrificing your social status, disagreeing with your closest family and friends, jeopardizing your economic security and earthly stability, giving away your possessions, leaving behind the accolades of the world, and..potentially losing your life..it is not possible to love the poor and live in unabated luxury..authentic tolerance doesn't mask truth but magnifies it, showing us how to love and serve one another in view of our differences..we spend the majority of our time sitting as spectators in services that cater to our comforts. Even in our giving to the church, we spend the majority of our money on places for us to meet, professionals to do the ministry, and programs designed around us and our kids..Jesus' main point is not that going to a funeral is wrong, but that his Kingdom will not take second place to anyone or anything else..Even more important than honoring the dead was proclaiming the Kingdom to those who were dying..Jesus knew that as great as people's earthly needs were, their eternal need was far greater..the ultimate priority of his coming was not to relieve suffering..his ultimate priority in coming to the world was to sever the root of suffering: sin itself..He came not just to give the poor drinking water for their bodies but to give people living water for their souls. He came not just to give orphans and widows a family now but to give them a family forever. He came not just to free girls from slavery to sex but to free them from slavery to sin. He came not just to make equality possible on earth but to make eternity possible in heaven..If all we do is meet people's physical needs while ignoring their spiritual need, we miss the entire point..We testify with our lips what we attest with our lives..giving a cup of water to the poor is not contingent upon that person's confession of faith in Christ..it is in addressing eternal suffering that we are most effective in alleviating earthly suffering..This commission is not just a general command to make disciples among as many people as possible. Instead, it is a specific command to make disciples among every people group in the world..Jesus has not given us a commission to consider; he has given us a command to obey..it seems that Jesus knows as soon as this man returns to his family, the lure to stay will be strong..It is not uncommon for the lure of family love to lead to faithless living..Following Jesus doesn't just entail sacrificial abandonment of our lives; it requires supreme affection from our hearts..I can slowly let indecision become inaction..delayed obedience becomes disobedience..If I'm walking by a lake and see a child drowning, I don't stop and ponder what I should do. Nor do I just stand there praying about what action to take. I do something..My purpose in putting these realities before us is not to cause us to collapse under their weight. To be certain, God alone is able to bear these global burdens..proclaim the gospel not under a utopian illusion that you or I or anyone or everyone together can rid this world of pain and suffering. That responsibility belongs to the resurrected Christ.
David Platt (A Compassionate Call to Counter Culture in a World of Poverty, Same-Sex Marriage, Racism, Sex Slavery, Immigration, Abortion, Persecution, Orphans and Pornography)
The fledgling is right. You’re a good man. Now, feed me.” He wisely opted to obey.
May Sage (Wickedly They Dance (After Darkness Falls, #3))
Preparatory men. I welcome all signs that a more manly, a warlike, age is about to begin, an age which, above all, will give honor to valor once again. For this age shall prepare the way for one yet higher, and it shall gather the strength which this higher age will need one day - this age which is to carry heroism into the pursuit of knowledge and wage wars for the sake of thoughts and their consequences. To this end we now need many preparatory valorous men who cannot leap into being out of nothing - any more than out of the sand and slime of our present civilisation and metropolitanism: men who are bent on seeking for that aspect in all things which must be overcome; men characterised by cheerfulness, patience, unpretentiousness, and contempt for all great vanities, as well as by magnanimity in victory and forbearance regarding the small vanities of the vanquished; men possessed of keen and free judgement concerning all victors and the share of chance in every victory and every fame; men who have their own festivals, their own weekdays, their own periods of mourning, who are accustomed to command with assurance and are no less ready to obey when necessary, in both cases equally proud and serving their own cause; men who are in greater danger, more fruitful, and happier! For, believe me, the secret of the greatest fruitfulness and the greatest enjoyment of existence is: to live dangerously! Build your cities under Vesuvius! Send your ships into uncharted seas! Live at war with your peers and yourselves! Be robbers and conquerors, as long as you cannot be rulers and owners, you lovers of knowledge! Soon the age will be past when you could be satisfied to live like shy deer, hidden in the woods! At long last the pursuit of knowledge will reach out for its due: it will want to rule and own, and you with it!
Friedrich Nietzsche (The Portable Nietzsche)
At once he felt the scales begin to grow out on his thickened skin, and his dark body lighten up with patches of irridescent blue; he fell upon his breast, and his two legs were blended into one, which, gradually lengthening, became an elegant and sharply pointed tail. His arms remained unchanged; he held them out, and as the tears coursed down his cheeks (which were still—for the moment—human), he exclaimed, “Come closer to me, O most wretched wife, and while there is still something left of me, before I am entirely transformed to serpent, touch me, take these hands in yours!” He would have said much more, but suddenly the tip of his tongue divided into two, and words no longer would obey his wishes, so that whenever he tried to complain or grieve, he hissed, and could not manage more, for he had been left with no other voice. Now striking her bare breast, his wife cries out, “Cadmus! Stay as you are! Put off these strange shapes now possessing you, unfortunate man! Cadmus, what’s happening? Where are your feet? Your face? Complexion? Even as I speak, where is the rest of you! Heavenly beings, will you not also turn me to a snake?” The creature’s tongue flicked lightly over her lips, and he slipped in between her cherished breasts as though he were familiar with the place, embraced her, and slid right around her neck. Those of his companions who were present were horrified, but she just calmly stroked the smooth, sleek neck of the crested dragon, and at once there were two serpents intertwined, who presently went crawling off and found a hiding place within a nearby grove.
Ovid
April 23 MORNING “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us.” — Romans 8:37 WE go to Christ for forgiveness, and then too often look to the law for power to fight our sins. Paul thus rebukes us, “O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth? This only would I learn of you, Received ye the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? are ye so foolish? having begun in the Spirit, are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” Take your sins to Christ’s cross, for the old man can only be crucified there: we are crucified with Him. The only weapon to fight sin with is the spear which pierced the side of Jesus. To give an illustration — you want to overcome an angry temper, how do you go to work? It is very possible you have never tried the right way of going to Jesus with it. How did I get salvation? I came to Jesus just as I was, and I trusted Him to save me. I must kill my angry temper in the same way? It is the only way in which I can ever kill it. I must go to the cross with it, and say to Jesus, “Lord, I trust Thee to deliver me from it.” This is the only way to give it a death-blow. Are you covetous? Do you feel the world entangle you? You may struggle against this evil so long as you please, but if it be your besetting sin, you will never be delivered from it in any way but by the blood of Jesus. Take it to Christ. Tell Him, “Lord, I have trusted Thee, and Thy name is Jesus, for Thou dost save Thy people from their sins; Lord, this is one of my sins; save me from it!” Ordinances are nothing without Christ as a means of mortification. Your prayers, and your repentances, and your tears — the whole of them put together — are worth nothing apart from Him. “None but Jesus can do helpless sinners good;” or helpless saints either. You must be conquerors through Him who hath loved you, if conquerors at all. Our laurels must grow among His olives in Gethsemane.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon (Morning and Evening-Classic KJV Edition)
Sun's down," muttered one of the guardsmen by the windows. "Then it's time." Grady made to push away from the table, and the rest began to follow. "No," said Kit. Grady paused with his palm pressed flat against the tabletop; all the other men froze. "What?" "No," Kit said once more, very polite. "Be seated. All of you." "Why are we wasting-" "Be seated." Even his old nemesis knew to obey that tone. It sliced across the room slick as steel, resounding into silence. The guard at the window let fall the drapery, a soft stir of cloth that barely touched the air. He could almost feel his father's ghost, watching, waiting. Christoff remained silent until they were done, until the last of them had sunk into nervous attention, staring at him through the gloom. "I claim her," he said. "I will hunt her alone." Grady twitched. "But-" "I claim her," he repeated, silkier and more deadly than before. "She is mine. And if you have issue with that-any of you-I invite you to tell me now. We'll settle it here. I will not abide insubordination." Reckless, red-faced, Grady shot back to his feet. Kit was on his own in half a heartbeat, his arm slashing out, a streak of metal flashing across the table. The stiletto struck deep into the wall mere inches behind the other man's head, the hilt of carnelian and worked gold an ominous blur against the silk. Silently, weightlessly, the outermost curl of Parrish Grady's wig drifted down to the dining table, settling feather-light against the dark wood. No one else moved; no one spoke. "I beg your pardon," said Kit cordially into the hush. "Was there something you wished to say?" Grady looked down at the severed lock, then back up at Kit. His throat worked, though no sound came out. Slowly, in awkward motion, he resumed his seat. "Excellent." Christoff sent a cold smile around the room. "Anyone else?" -a guardsmen, Grady, & Kit
Shana Abe (The Smoke Thief (Drakon, #1))
Verse 20 is a restatement of verse 14: we need to live our lives “in line” with the truth of the gospel. Now that Christ’s life is my life, Christ’s past is my past. I am “in Christ” (v 17), which means that I am as free from condemnation before God as if I had already died and been judged, as if I had paid the debt myself. And I am as loved by God as if I had lived the life Christ lived. So “it is not me that lives, but Christ” is a triumphant reminder that, though “we ourselves are sinners”, in Christ we are righteous. Then Paul follows up with verse 21, to say: Now when I live my life and make my choices and do my work, I do so remembering who I am by faith in Christ, who loved me so much! The inner dynamic for living the Christian life is right here! Only when I see myself as completely loved and holy in Christ will I have the power to repent with joy, conquer my fears, and obey the One who did all this for me. Everything or Nothing? It’s worth remembering that Paul is still speaking to Peter here! And so he finishes by reminding Peter that the Christian life is about living in line with the gospel throughout the whole of life, for the whole of our lives. We must go on as Christians as we started as Christians. After all, if at any point and in any way “righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!” (v 21). Christ will do everything for you, or nothing. You cannot combine merit and grace. If justification is by the law in any way, Christ’s death is meaningless in history and meaningless to you personally. Imagine that your house were burning down but your whole family had escaped, and I said to you: Let me show you how much I love you! and ran into the house and died. What a tragic and pointless waste of a life, you would probably think. But now imagine that your house was on fire and one of your children was still in there, and I said to you: Let me show you how much I love you!, ran into the flames, and saved your child but perished myself. You would think: Look at how much that man loved us. If we could save ourselves, Christ’s death is pointless, and means nothing. If we realize we cannot save ourselves, Christ’s death will mean everything to us. And we will spend the life that He has given us in joyful service of Him, bringing our whole lives into line with the gospel.
Timothy J. Keller (Galatians For You (God's Word For You))
The New England wilderness March 1, 1704 Temperature 10 degrees She had no choice but to go to him. She set Daniel down. Perhaps they would spare Daniel. Perhaps only she was to be burned. She forced herself to keep her chin up, her eyes steady and her steps even. How could she be afraid of going where her five-year-old brother had gone first? O Tommy, she thought, rest in the Lord. Perhaps you are with Mother now. Perhaps I will see you in a moment. She did not want to die. Her footsteps crunched on the snow. Nobody spoke. Nobody moved. The Indian handed Mercy a slab of cornmeal bread, and then beckoned to Daniel, who cried, “Oh, good, I’m so hungry!” and came running, his happy little face tilted in a smile at the Indian who fed him. “Mercy said we’d eat later,” Daniel confided in the Indian. The English trembled in their relief and the French laughed. The Indian knelt beside Daniel, tossing aside Tommy’s jacket and dressing Daniel in warm clean clothing from another child. Nobody in Deerfield owned many clothes, and if she permitted herself to think about it, Mercy would know whose trousers and shirt these were, but she did not want to think about what dead child did not need clothes, so she said to the Indian, “Who are you? What’s your name?” He understood. Putting the palm of his hand against his chest, he said, “Tannhahorens.” She could just barely separate the syllables. It sounded more like a duck quacking than a real word. “Tannhahorens,” he said again, and she repeated it after him. She wondered what it meant. Indian names had to make a picture. She smiled carefully at the man she had thought was going to burn her alive as an example and said, “I’ll be right back, Tannhahorens.” She took a few steps away, and when he did nothing, she ran to her family. Her uncle swept her into his arms. How wonderful his scratchy beard felt! How strong and comforting his hug! “My brave girl,” he whispered, kissing her hair. “Mercy, they won’t let me help you.” In a voice as childish and puzzled as Daniel’s, he added, “They won’t let me help your aunt Mary, or Will and Little Mary either. I tried to help your brothers and got whipped for it.” He stammered: Uncle Nathaniel, whose reading choices from the Bible were always about war, and whose voice made every battle exciting. He needed her comfort as much as she needed his. “Uncle Nathaniel,” she said, “if I had done better, Tommy and Marah--” “Hush,” said her uncle. “The Lord set a task before you and you obeyed. Daniel is your task. Say your prayers as you march.” In a tight little pack behind Uncle Nathaniel stood her three living brothers. How small and cold they looked. Sam lifted his chin to encourage his sister and said, “At least we’re together. Do the best you can, Mercy. So will we.” They stared at each other, the two closest in age, and Mercy thought how proud their mother would be of Sam. “Mercy,” cried her brother John, panicking, “you have to go! Go fast,” he said urgently. “Your Indian is pointing at you.” Tannhahorens was watching her but not signaling. He isn’t angry, thought Mercy. I don’t have to be afraid, but I do have to return. “Find out your Indian’s name,” she said to her brothers. “It helps. Call him by name.” She took the time to hug and kiss each brother. How narrow their little shoulders; how thin the cloth that must keep them from freezing. She had to go before she wept. Indians did not care for crying. “Be strong, Uncle Nathaniel,” she said, touching the strange collar around his neck. “Don’t tug it,” he said wryly. “It’s lined with porcupine quill tips. If I don’t move at the right speed, the Indians give my leash a twitch and the needles jab my throat.” The boys laughed, pantomiming a hard jerk on the cord, and Mercy said, “You’re all just as mean as you ever were!” “And alive,” said Sam. When they hugged once more, she felt a tremor in him, deep and horrified, but under control.
Caroline B. Cooney (The Ransom of Mercy Carter)
How does one man assert his power over another, Winston?” Winston thought. “By making him suffer,” he said. “Exactly. By making him suffer. Obedience is not enough. Unless he is suffering, how can you be sure that he is obeying your will and not his own?...
George Orwell (1984)
Refuse to tolerate anything less than harmony. You can have prosperity no matter what your present circumstances may be. Man has dominion over all things when he knows the Law of Being, and obeys it. The Law gives you power to attain prosperity and position without infringing the rights and opportunities of anyone else in the world.” — Emmet Fox in Alter Your Life
John Randolph Price (The Abundance Book)
Stop doing this,” she cried fiercely. “You’ll drive me mad. You want to behave as if I belong to you, but I don’t, and I never will. Your worst nightmare is becoming a husband and father, and so you seem determined to form some kind of lesser attachment that I do not want. Even if I were pregnant and you felt duty-bound to propose, I would still refuse you, because I know it would make you as unhappy as it would make me.” Devon’s intensity didn’t lessen, but it changed from anger into something else. He held her with a gaze of hot blue infinity. “What if I said I loved you?” he asked softly. The question drove a spike of pain through her chest. “Don’t.” Her eyes smarted with tears. “You’re not the kind of man who could ever say that and mean it.” “It’s not who I was.” His voice was steady. “But it’s who I am now. You’ve shown me.” For at least a half minute, the only sound was the crackling, shivering fire on the hearth. She didn’t understand what he truly thought or felt. But she would be a fool to believe him. “Devon,” she eventually said, “when it comes to love…neither you nor I can trust your promises.” She couldn’t see through the glittering film of misery, but she was aware of him moving, bending to pick up the coat he had tossed aside, rummaging for something. He came to her, catching her arm lightly in his hand, drawing her to the bed. The mattress was so high that he had to fit his hands around her waist and hoist her upward to sit on it. He set something on her lap. “What is this?” She looked down at a small wooden box. His expression was unfathomable. “A gift for you.” Her sharp tongue got the better of her. “A parting gift?” Devon scowled. “Open it.” Obeying, she lifted the lid. The box was lined with red velvet. Pulling aside a protective layer of cloth, she uncovered a tiny gold pocket watch on a long chain, the casing delicately engraved with flowers and leaves. A glass window on the hinged front cover revealed a white enamel dial and black hour and minute markers. “It belonged to my mother,” she heard Devon say. “It’s the only possession of hers that I have. She never carried it.” Irony edged his voice. “Time was never important to her.
Lisa Kleypas (Cold-Hearted Rake (The Ravenels, #1))
Diriday is the perfect mount for me." In that low, deep, beastly growl, he replied, "It's good to know you'll... ride... as I wish." She flushed. Her toes curled, and her nipples tightened into firm beads that ached to be touched. How had he done it? She'd said the most obvious thing, and he'd made it clear he wasn't talking about the horse. He pried her bare fingers from the rail of the stall and kissed them. "I find Lady Gertrude is a good chaperon," he said. Eleanor nodded, stricken dumb by the brief brush of his lips that had sent goose bumps racing up her arms. He placed her hand on his shoulder. "So good, you and I haven't had a moment alone together." "We're alone now." Unwise to remind him! He crooned with satisfaction, "So we are." "So we should go now." She tried to step away, to obey her instincts and flee. Mr. Knight maneuvered her so that her back was to the post. "Fortunately, Lady Gertrude doesn't ride, and doesn't see that our being together now is a cause of concern." "It's not." Eleanor tried to speak firmly, yet she ended on a questioning note. "Lady Gertrude has no imagination." In the dim light, his eyes watched her relentlessly, like a falcon watches a fleeing morsel. In slow increments, he extended his free hand and wrapped it around her waist. "I find myself wondering about you." When had the situation turned dangerous? "I'm easily understood." "You're a mystery, one I find myself compelled to solve. I want to know whether you like to kiss with your mouth closed... or open." She gasped in shock. "Where you find most pleasure when a man's mouth, my mouth, roams your body." She wanted to gasp once more, but the gratification she saw in his face stopped her. Yes, he shocked her. He enjoyed shocking her. But she hated being so craven. She yearned to take him back, and out of the depths of that need, she found the nerve to reply, "You may ask me those questions, and mayhap, if I wish, I'll reply. But don't imagine you yourself can discover the answers." "Ask. What a novel idea." A small smile played across his velvet lips. "Yes, you could tell me, of course, but I find I like to make discoveries on my own." Pulling her close against his body, he sealed them together. Discoveries? She could tell him about discoveries. She did like being embraced so tightly that her breasts pressed against his chest; and that, and the amusement in his gaze, were reasons enough to leave- at once. With a twist, she freed herself and ran. He sprang after her. Two stalls down, he caught her by the waist. He swung her against the gate and held her hard against him. She stared into his pale blue eyes and with all her heart wished she had some experience in these matters, for she had never felt so helpless in her life. "I'm not going to hurt you." His voice was deep and heated. "I'm not going to ravish you. I'm just going to kiss you.
Christina Dodd (One Kiss From You (Switching Places, #2))
You must make everything that is yours saleable, i.e., useful. If I ask the political economist: Do I obey economic laws if I extract money by offering my body for sale, by surrendering it to another's lust? (The factory workers in France call the prostitution of their wives and daughters the nth working hour, which is literally correct.) — Or am I not acting in keeping with political economy if I sell my friend to the Moroccans? (And the direct sale of men in the form of a trade in conscripts, etc., takes place in all civilized countries.) — Then the political economist replies to me: You do not transgress my laws; but see what Cousin Ethics and Cousin Religion have to say about it. My political economic ethics and religion have nothing to reproach you with, but — But whom am I now to believe, political economy or ethics? — The ethics of political economy is acquisition, work, thrift, sobriety — but political economy promises to satisfy my needs. — The political economy of ethics is the opulence of a good conscience, of virtue, etc.; but how can I live virtuously if I do not live? And how can I have a good conscience if I do not know anything? It stems from the very nature of estrangement that each sphere applies to me a different and opposite yardstick — ethics one and political economy another; for each is a specific estrangement of man and focuses attention on a particular field of estranged essential activity, and each stands in an estranged relation to the other.
Karl Marx (Economic & Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844)
As we drove to school, my dad fished a handkerchief out of his pocket and handed it to me. “We hope you will come home now, Lindsay,” he said. “We sure miss you. The place doesn’t seem the same without our girl. How about it?” It was hard for me to speak, because I was still crying a little. “I want to,” I managed to say, “but I can’t turn over the animals to that man. He’d kill them. I can’t obey the law, no matter what. I’ll go to jail first.” We were at school by then, and my dad parked the car and turned to me. “Wipe your eyes and look at me, Lindsay. I have something to say to you.” I did as he said. “I’m really proud of you, my girl. You are very young to take a stand against the law as a matter of conscience, but I see that that is what you are doing. The law is not going to excuse you for it, however. People who break laws, even bad laws, must pay the penalty. Yet, sometimes, people of conscience are willing to stand up for what they believe is right, and willing to take the punishment for doing so. As a result, they call attention to laws that need to be changed. Still, they have to pay a price for their belief. Do you understand that?” “I think so.” “Here’s an example. More than twenty years before you were born, African-American people in the South refused to obey unjust laws that said they could not sit in the front of a bus or eat in an all-white restaurant. Well, they defied those laws and sat where they pleased. And hundreds of them were hauled off and put into jails for breaking the law. Well, pretty soon the jails were full, and the entire country had heard about what was going on. Almost everybody sided with the African-American cause and demanded that the unjust laws be changed. So, in the end, the law was changed. That kind of lawbreaking is called civil disobedience.” “Is that what Greta and I are doing?” “I think so. If I have heard you right, you said that you would be willing to go to jail to protect your animals. That’s very brave of you, and I can’t ask you to act against your conscience. Now are you ready to come home again?” At that moment, I loved my dad so much that I couldn’t say anything. I just threw my arms around him and kissed him. Then I got out of the car and went into the school quickly. I needed time to wash my face before going to class.
Hope Ryden (Backyard Rescue)
Cosette took both the old man’s hands in hers. ‘My God!’ said she, ‘your hands are still colder than before. Are you ill? Do you suffer?’ ‘I? No,’ replied Jean Valjean. ‘I am very well. Only …’ He paused. ‘Only what?’ ‘I am going to die presently.’ Cosette and Marius shuddered. ‘To die!’ exclaimed Marius. ‘Yes, but that is nothing,’ said Jean Valjean. He took breath, smiled and resumed: ‘Cosette, thou wert talking to me, go on, so thy little robin red-breast is dead? Speak, so that I may hear thy voice.’ Marius gazed at the old man in amazement. Cosette uttered a heartrending cry. ‘Father! my father! you will live. You are going to live. I insist upon your living, do you hear?’ Jean Valjean raised his head towards her with adoration. ‘Oh! yes, forbid me to die. Who knows? Perhaps I shall obey. I was on the verge of dying when you came. That stopped me, it seemed to me that I was born again.’ ‘You are full of strength and life,’ cried Marius. ‘Do you imagine that a person can die like this? You have had sorrow, you shall have no more. It is I who ask your forgiveness, and on my knees! You are going to live, and to live with us, and to live a long time. We take possession of you once more. There are two of us here who will henceforth have no Free eBooks at Planet eBook.com 2439 other thought than your happiness.’ ‘You see,’ resumed Cosette, all bathed in tears, ‘that Marius says that you shall not die.’ Jean Valjean continued to smile. ‘Even if you were to take possession of me, Monsieur Pontmercy, would that make me other than I am? No, God has thought like you and myself, and he does not change his mind; it is useful for me to go. Death is a good arrangement. God knows better than we what we need. May you be happy, may Monsieur Pontmercy have Cosette, may youth wed the morning, may there be around you, my children, lilacs and nightingales; may your life be a beautiful, sunny lawn, may all the enchantments of heaven fill your souls, and now let me, who am good for nothing, die; it is certain that all this is right. Come, be reasonable, nothing is possible now, I am fully conscious that all is over. And then, last night, I drank that whole jug of water. How good thy husband is, Cosette! Thou art much better off with him than with me.
Victor Hugo
31 To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. 32 Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 33 They answered him, “We are Abraham’s descendants and have never been slaves of anyone. How can you say that we shall be set free?” 34 Jesus replied, “Very truly אני אומר you, everyone who sins is a slave to sin. 35 Now a slave has no permanent place in the family, but a son belongs to it forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. 37 I know that you are Abraham’s descendants. Yet you are looking for בדרך to kill me, because you have no room for my word. 38 I am telling you what I have seen in the Father’s presence, and you are doing what אתה שמעת from your father.[b]” 39 “Abraham is our father,” they answered. “If you were Abraham’s children,” said Jesus, “then you would[c] do what Abraham did. 40 As it is, you are looking for a way to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that שמעתי from God. Abraham did not do such things. 41 You are doing the works of your own father.” “We are not illegitimate children,” they protested. “The only Father we have is God himself.” 42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for הגעתי here from God. I have not come on my own; God sent me. 43 Why is my language not clear to you? Because you are unable to hear what I say. 44 You belong to your father, the devil, and אתה רוצה to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, הוא מדבר his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 Yet because אני אומר the truth, you do not believe me! 46 Can any of you prove me guilty of sin? If אני מספר האמת, why don’t אתה מאמין me? 47 Whoever belongs to God hears איזה אלוהים says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.” Jesus’ Claims About Himself 48 The Jews answered him, “Aren’t we right in saying that you are a Samaritan and demon-possessed?” 49 “I am not possessed by a demon,” said Jesus, “but I honor my Father and you dishonor me. 50 I am not seeking glory for myself; but there is one who seeks it, and he is the judge. 51 Very truly אני אומר you, whoever obeys my word will never see death.” 52 At this they exclaimed, “Now we know that you are demon-possessed! Abraham died and so did the prophets, yet you say that whoever obeys your word will never taste death. 53 Are you greater than our father Abraham? הוא מת, and so did the prophets. Who do you think you are?” 54 Jesus replied, “If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. אבא שלי, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me. 55 Though you do not know him, I know him. If I said I did not, I would be a liar like you, but I do know him and obey his word. 56 Your father Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing my day; הוא ראה it and was glad.” 57 “You are not yet fifty years old,” they said to him, “and you have seen Abraham!” 58 “Very truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!
jn8
the police. Offer to assist them in every way. We shall wait here until your return.’ The little man obeyed in a half-stupefied fashion, and we heard him stumbling
Arthur Conan Doyle (The Sign of Four)
Don't interpret too literally the 'obey' of the Marriage Service. Your husband has no right to control your individuality. Don't be discontented and think your husband is not 'manly' because he happens to be short and thin, and not very strong. Manliness is not a purely physical quality.
Blanche Ebbutt (Don'ts for Wives)
1. After dark, stars glisten like ice, and the distance they span Hides something elemental. Not God, exactly. More like Some thin-hipped glittering Bowie-being—a Starman Or cosmic ace hovering, swaying, aching to make us see. And what would we do, you and I, if we could know for sure That someone was there squinting through the dust, Saying nothing is lost, that everything lives on waiting only To be wanted back badly enough? Would you go then, Even for a few nights, into that other life where you And that first she loved, blind to the future once, and happy? Would I put on my coat and return to the kitchen where my Mother and father sit waiting, dinner keeping warm on the stove? Bowie will never die. Nothing will come for him in his sleep Or charging through his veins. And he’ll never grow old, Just like the woman you lost, who will always be dark-haired And flush-faced, running toward an electronic screen That clocks the minutes, the miles left to go. Just like the life In which I’m forever a child looking out my window at the night sky Thinking one day I’ll touch the world with bare hands Even if it burns. 2. He leaves no tracks. Slips past, quick as a cat. That’s Bowie For you: the Pope of Pop, coy as Christ. Like a play Within a play, he’s trademarked twice. The hours Plink past like water from a window A/C. We sweat it out, Teach ourselves to wait. Silently, lazily, collapse happens. But not for Bowie. He cocks his head, grins that wicked grin. Time never stops, but does it end? And how many lives Before take-off, before we find ourselves Beyond ourselves, all glam-glow, all twinkle and gold? The future isn’t what it used to be. Even Bowie thirsts For something good and cold. Jets blink across the sky Like migratory souls. 3. Bowie is among us. Right here In New York City. In a baseball cap And expensive jeans. Ducking into A deli. Flashing all those teeth At the doorman on his way back up. Or he’s hailing a taxi on Lafayette As the sky clouds over at dusk. He’s in no rush. Doesn’t feel The way you’d think he feels. Doesn’t strut or gloat. Tells jokes. I’ve lived here all these years And never seen him. Like not knowing A comet from a shooting star. But I’ll bet he burns bright, Dragging a tail of white-hot matter The way some of us track tissue Back from the toilet stall. He’s got The whole world under his foot, And we are small alongside, Though there are occasions When a man his size can meet Your eyes for just a blip of time And send a thought like SHINE SHINE SHINE SHINE SHINE Straight to your mind. Bowie, I want to believe you. Want to feel Your will like the wind before rain. The kind everything simply obeys, Swept up in that hypnotic dance As if something with the power to do so Had looked its way and said: Go ahead.
Tracy K. Smith (Life on Mars)
FROM GENERAL N. BEDFORD FORREST'S FAREWELL TO HIS COMMAND, MAY 9, 1865, GAINESVILLE, ALABAMA. The cause for which you have so long and so manfully struggled, and for which you have braved dangers, endured privations and sufferings, and made so many sacrifices, is today hopeless.... Civil war, such as you have passed through naturally engenders feelings of animosity, hatred and revenge. It is our duty to divest ourselves of all such feelings; and, as far as in our power to do so, to cultivate friendly feelings toward those with whom we have so long contended, and heretofore so widely, but honestly, differed.... ... In bidding you farewell, rest assured that you carry with you my best wishes for your future welfare and happiness. Without, in any way, referring to the merits of the cause in which we have been engaged, your courage and determination, as exhibited on many hard-fought fields, have elicited the respect and admiration of friend and foe. And I now cheerfully and gratefully acknowledge my indebtedness to the officers and men of my command, whose zeal, fidelity and unflinching bravery have been the great source of my success in arms. I have never, on the field of battle, sent you where I was unwilling to go myself; nor would I now advise you to a course which I felt myself unwilling to pursue. You have been good soldiers; you can be good citizens. Obey the laws, preserve your honor, and the Government to which you have surrendered can afford to be, and will be, magnanimous. N.
Andre Norton (Ride Proud, Rebel! (Serapis Classics))
don’t mean you disregard every rule of your community. I don’t go around naked, for example. I don’t run through red lights. The little things, I can obey. But the big things—how we think, what we value—those you must choose yourself. You can’t let anyone—or any society—determine those for you.
Mitch Albom (Tuesdays with Morrie: An old man, a young man, and life's greatest lesson)
Mikhail, you can’t put me in a box or keep me on a shelf.” She spoke as gently as she could. “I will not argue over your safety. Earlier, you were alone with a man who thought of forcibly taking you. Any wild animal could have attacked you, and if you had not been under my protection, in his present state, Rand might have harmed you.” “None of those things happened, Mikhail.” In spite of herself, she touched his jaw with gentle, placating fingers, a tender caress. “You have enough to worry about, enough responsibilities, without adding me to them. I can help you. You know I’m capable. I’ve done it before.” He tugged at her wrist so that she lost her balance and fell against his hard strength. “You are going to make me crazy, Raven.” His arms came up, pinning her soft, slender form against him. His voice dropped to a drawling caress, mesmerizing, pure black magic. “You are the one person I long to protect, yet you will not obey. You insist on independence. All others lean on my strength, yet you seek to help me, to shoulder my duties.” He lowered his mouth to hers.
Christine Feehan (Dark Prince (Dark, #1))
NEVER-ENDING LOVE And we have this command from Him: the one who loves God must also love his brother. 1 John 4:21 HCSB C. S. Lewis observed, “A man’s spiritual health is exactly proportional to his love for God.” If we are to enjoy the spiritual health that God intends for us, we must praise Him, we must love Him, and we must obey Him. When we worship God faithfully and obediently, we invite His love into our hearts. When we truly worship God, we allow Him to rule over our days and our lives. In turn, we grow to love God even more deeply as we sense His love for us. Today, open your heart to the Father. And let your obedience be a fitting response to His never-ending love. When we develop an authentic love relationship with God, we will not be able to keep Him compartmentalized in “churchy,” religious categories. Beth Moore To love God is to love His will. Elisabeth Elliot A TIMELY TIP Because God first loved you, you should love Him. And one way that you demonstrate your love is by obeying Him.
Freeman (Once A Day Everyday ... For A Woman of Grace)
MORE FROM GOD’S WORD I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live, love the Lord your God, obey Him, and remain faithful to Him. For He is your life, and He will prolong your life in the land the Lord swore to give to your fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Deuteronomy 30:19-20 HCSB Ignorant zeal is worthless; haste makes waste. Proverbs 19:2 MSG But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself…. Daniel 1:8 KJV But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. Matthew 6:33 HCSB Above all and before all, do this: Get Wisdom! Write this at the top of your list: Get Understanding! Proverbs 4:7 MSG The wise people will shine like the brightness of the sky. Those who teach others to live right will shine like stars forever and ever. Daniel 12:3 NCV SHADES OF GRACE The Gospel is not so much a demand as it is an offer, an offer of new life to man by the grace of God. E. Stanley Jones A PRAYER FOR TODAY Dear Lord, today I will focus my thoughts on Your will for my life. I will strive to make decisions that are pleasing to You, and I will strive to follow in the footsteps of Your Son. Amen
Freeman Smith (Fifty Shades of Grace: Devotions Celebrating God's Unlimited Gift)
CHOICES THAT PLEASE GOD I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Choose life so that you and your descendants may live, love the Lord your God, obey Him, and remain faithful to Him. For He is your life, and He will prolong your life in the land the Lord swore to give to your fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Deuteronomy 30:19-20 HCSB Sometimes, because you’re an imperfect human being, you may become so wrapped up in meeting society’s expectations that you fail to focus on God’s expectations. To do so is a mistake of major proportions—don’t make it. Instead, seek God’s guidance as you focus your energies on becoming the best “you” that you can possibly be. And, when it comes to matters of conscience, seek approval not from your peers, but from your Creator. Whom will you try to please today: God or man? Your primary obligation is not to please imperfect men and women. Your obligation is to strive diligently to meet the expectations of an all-knowing and perfect God. Trust Him always. Love Him always. Praise Him always. And make choices that please Him. Always. Commitment to His lordship on Easter, at revivals, or even every Sunday is not enough. We must choose this day—and every day—whom we will serve. This deliberate act of the will is the inevitable choice between habitual fellowship and habitual failure. Beth Moore A TIMELY TIP First you make choices . . . and pretty soon those choices begin to shape your life. That’s why you must make smart choices . . . or face the consequences of making dumb ones.
Freeman (Once A Day Everyday ... For A Woman of Grace)
Love?” “Love.” “I have watched His followers, these little Christs, and am jealous of them, I am wishing to be one of them but I am not a Jew? How can I be one of them?” “The Law of Sovereignty states that if a criminal should beg forgiveness and has truly confessed his guilt, he may ask of his king to take his place, the criminal becomes the property of the king but is a citizen of good standing when the king takes his place. Are you such a man?” “I am.” “Do you confess your guilt?” “I do.” “Do you accept Him as your redeemer?” “I do.” “Will you obey His commands?” “I will? “Then, welcome brother.” “But as I have said I am not a Jew?” “And as I have said, neither am I. It is true that Yeshua came first for the Jew, but He came for all men, so that on the Day of Days we will be of one nation.
J. Michael Morgan (Yeshua Cup: The Melchizedek Journals)
Moses’ hand trembled as he wrote the words. …if you do not obey the Lord your God and do not carefully follow all his commands and decrees I am giving you today, all these curses will come upon you and overtake you…. The Lord will cause you to be defeated before your enemies. You will come at them from one direction but flee from them in seven, and you will become a thing of horror to all the kingdoms on earth…. At midday you will grope about like a blind man in the dark. You will be unsuccessful in everything you do; day after day you will be oppressed and robbed, with no one to rescue you.
Gilbert Morris (Daughter of Deliverance (Lions of Judah Book #6))
Not trusting the Bible literally led him into 3 steps of disobedience that the Devil wanted Nida to take on as his life’s purpose: Selective belief – believing only what he agrees with in the Bible Paraphrasing – willing to change and rewrite anything he doesn’t agree with Selective obedience – obeying what he decides to obey, since we can never know for sure what God said in a paraphrase, because you can never know where God left off and man’s opinions began. But look how specific God is about obeying His words to the letter: “Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you.” (Deuteronomy 4:2) In summary, please keep in mind two points: You cannot believe God’s words, if you don’t know which words are God’s and which words are man’s. And you cannot keep God’s commandments, if you don’t know what He literally said.
David W. Daniels (Why They Changed The Bible: One World Bible For One World Religion)
who you want to meet and we’ll bring him to you.’ ‘Abraham is a hostage,’ Satyrus said. ‘You can’t bring him out of Athens, and I need to see him.’ His captains looked at him with something like suspicion. ‘I’m going to Athens,’ he insisted. ‘Without your fleet?’ Sandokes asked. ‘Haven’t you got this backward, lord? If you must go, why not lead with a show of force?’ ‘Can you go three days armed and ready to fight?’ Satyrus asked. ‘In the midst of the Athenian fleet? No. Trust me on this, friends. And obey – I pay your wages. Go to Aegina and wait.’ Sandokes was dissatisfied and he wasn’t interested in hiding it. ‘Lord, we do obey. We’re good captains and good fighters, and most of us have been with you a few years. Long enough to earn the right to tell you when you are just plain wrong.’ He took a breath. ‘Lord, you’re wrong. Take us into Athens – ten ships full of fighting men, and no man will dare raise a finger to you. Or better yet, stay here, or you go to Aegina and we’ll sail into Athens.’ Satyrus shrugged, angered. ‘You all feel this way?’ he asked. Sarpax shook his head. ‘No,’ he said. ‘Aekes and Sandokes have a point, but I’ll obey you. I don’t know exactly what your relationship with Demetrios is, and you do.’ He looked at the other captains. ‘We don’t know.’ Sandokes shook his head. ‘I’ll obey, lord – surely I’m allowed to disagree?’ Satyrus bit his lip. After a flash of anger passed, he chose his words carefully. ‘I appreciate that you are all trying to help. I hope that you’ll trust that I’ve thought this through as carefully as I can, and I have a more complete appreciation of the forces at work than any of you can have.’ Sandokes didn’t back down. ‘I hope that you appreciate that we have only your best interests at heart, lord. And that we don’t want to look elsewhere for employment while your corpse cools.’ He shrugged. ‘Our oarsmen are hardening up, we have good helmsmen and good clean ships. I wager we can take any twenty ships in these waters. No one – no one with any sense – will mess with you while we’re in the harbour.’ Satyrus managed a smile. ‘If you are right, I’ll happily allow you to tell me that you told me so,’ he said. Sandokes turned away. Aekes caught his shoulder. ‘There’s no changing my mind on this,’ Satyrus said. Sandokes shrugged. ‘We’ll sail for Aegina when you tell us,’ Aekes said. Satyrus had never felt such a premonition of disaster in all his life. He was ignoring the advice of a god, and all of his best fighting captains, and sailing into Athens, unprotected. But his sense – the same sense that helped him block a thrust in a fight – told him that the last thing he wanted was to provoke Demetrios. He explained as much to Anaxagoras as the oarsmen ran the ships into the water. Anaxagoras just shook his head. ‘I feel like a fool,’ Satyrus said. ‘But I won’t change my mind.’ Anaxagoras sighed. ‘When we’re off Piraeus, I’ll go off in Miranda or one of the other grain ships. I want you to stay with the fleet,’ Satyrus said. ‘Just in case.’ Anaxagoras picked up the leather bag with his armour and the heavy wool bag with his sea clothes and his lyre. ‘Very well,’ he said crisply. ‘You think I’m a fool,’ Satyrus said. ‘I think you are risking your life and your kingdom to see Miriam, and you know perfectly well you don’t have to. She loves you. She’ll wait. So yes, I think you are being a fool.’ Satyrus narrowed his eyes. ‘You asked,’ Anaxagoras said sweetly, and walked away.         3           Attika appeared first out of the sea haze; a haze so fine and so thin that a landsman would not even have noticed how restricted was his visibility.
Christian Cameron (Force of Kings (Tyrant #6))
When we are man and wife you will do as I say. You will never speak of this again!” Samuel came forward and loomed over her, his thick breath clouding the air in front of her face. “When you are mine, you will obey me.” “I will not be your wife. I refuse to marry a man who is dishonest.
Amber Lynn Perry (So Fair a Lady (Daughters of His Kingdom, #1))
The twelve stay. They eat a final meal with Jesus, and with his hands he tears the unleavened bread and holds it up to them. 'This is my body,' he says. 'Remember me.' And he tells Simon that the adversary has asked to sift them all like wheat, but their faith will be restored. The next day the Christ is lifted up at Golgotha, nailed to a tree, dead before sunset. And when his Spirit leaves him, the temple curtain rends, a veil between God and man. Left exposed in the holiest place is the ark of the covenant, and in that, the manna given to the Hebrews in the desert, life-giving for those who ate of it, but only for a short while here on this earth. And the people remember his words on the shore of Capernaum: 'Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died. This is the bread that comes down from heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. And the bread that I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.' His body, crucified, given for them so they may taste eternity. Three days later, resurrected, so those who believe can come to his banquet table and be filled. His followers obey. They devote themselves to the breaking of the bread. They remember him each time they eat of it, and offer thanks. They are sustained in the world and rescued from the world because God became man, and man became bread.
Christa Parrish (Stones for Bread)
For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery. 2Look: I, Paul, say to you that if you accept circumcision, Christ will be of no advantage to you. 3I testify again to every man who accepts circumcision that he is obligated to keep the whole law. 4You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified [1] by the law; you have fallen away from grace. 5For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. 6For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love. 7You were running well. Who hindered you from obeying the truth? 8This persuasion is not from him who calls you. 9A little leaven leavens the whole lump. 10I have confidence in the Lord that you will take no other view, and the one who is troubling you will bear the penalty, whoever he is. 11But if I, brothers, [2] still preach [3] circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been removed. 12I wish those who unsettle you would emasculate themselves! 13For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. 14For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 15But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another. Keep in Step with the Spirit 16But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. 18But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21envy, [4] drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. 26Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another. Bear One Another’s Burdens
Anonymous (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version (without Cross-References))
When we are man and wife you will do as I say. You will never speak of this again!” Samuel came forward and loomed over her, his thick breath clouding the air in front of her face. “When you are mine, you will obey me.” “I will not be your wife. I refuse to marry a man who is dishonest.” “I have never been dishonest with you.” Fresh malice boiled in Eliza’s belly. “You said you would not harm Thomas if I promised to return here and marry you, did you not?” “I did.” “So why did you tell Donaldson to burn Thomas’s property after we were married? I refuse to be your wife, since you have rescinded on our agreement.” A monster unleashed before her. Samuel shoved Eliza against Father’s rows of books, their hard covers stabbing into her back just as Samuel’s eyes stabbed into her chest. “If you do not marry me, not only will his house burn, but Thomas will as well.” Eliza’s blood escaped her face and she braced herself as the room twisted around her. “You wouldn’t.” Samuel’s eyes narrowed into small black slits. “I would.” Her bones wanted to crack under the weight of his words and her voice refused to work, but somehow she found her ability to speak. “If I find that you have done anything to him after we are married I will do everything in my power to leave you, make no mistake.” Samuel relaxed his numbing grip, a wicked laugh rumbling in his chest. “You can’t leave me, Eliza. Not after everything I’ve done for you.” “I can, and I will!” Samuel roared and without warning slapped her across the face, causing her to tumble sideways. She hit Father’s chair and landed in a rough heap on the floor. He rushed to her, panic lighting his features, as if it had been someone else who had struck her. “Eliza, I’m so sorry. I don’t know what came over me. Are you hurt?” A trickle of warm liquid ran down her cheek. He tried to touch her face, but she slapped his hand away. “Don’t you dare touch me.” His face drained of all color and he sputtered as he spoke, his voice quiet. “I’m so sorry, Eliza, I—” “Thomas would have never dreamed of hitting me, Samuel.” She straightened to her full height, breathing in deep heaves. “He lets me speak my mind and ask questions. He believes that what I think matters. He loves me!” Samuel lowered his brow and his tone rumbled in his chest as he shook her shoulders. “You will never speak of Thomas again. Today we will be married, and you will be mine forever and you will love me! As far as you are concerned, Thomas never existed.” The finality of his statement sluiced over her, causing her knees to buckle. She gripped the row of books behind her to steady her stance. “So be it, Samuel Martin,” she said, filling her voice with razors. “But know this, there is only one man that I will ever love—dead or alive. And it will never be you!
Amber Lynn Perry (So Fair a Lady (Daughters of His Kingdom, #1))
Women are inherently crooked? Certainly some Muslim clerics think so—or at least, they do not believe in legal equality for women. Bangladeshi Islamic cleric Mufti Fazlul Haq Amini read the same Koran that Tony Blair found so progressive and yet complained about attempts in his native country to establish equal property rights for women. The problem? That would be “directly against Islam and the holy Koran.”7 And where do Muslims get such ideas? They stem from the overall inferior status of women promulgated in the Koran, which specifically refutes the notion that women have as much basic human dignity as men. To the contrary, Allah says men are superior. When giving regulations for divorce, Allah stipulates that women “have rights similar to those (of men) over them in kindness.” Similar, but not identical, for “men are a degree above them” (2:228). Far from mandating equality, the Koran portrays women as essentially possessions of men. The Koran likens a woman to a field (tilth), to be used by a man as he wills: “Your women are a tilth for you (to cultivate) so go to your tilth as ye will” (2:223). And in a tradition Muhammad details the qualities of a good wife, including that “she obeys when instructed” and “the husband is pleased to look at her.”8 The Koran decrees women’s subordination to men in numerous other verses:            •    It declares that a woman’s legal testimony is worth half that of a man: “Get two witnesses, out of your own men, and if there are not two men, then a man and two women, such as ye choose, for witnesses, so that if one of them errs, the other can remind her” (2:282).            •    It allows men to marry up to four wives, and also to have sex with slave girls: “If ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with the orphans, marry women of your choice, two or three or four; but if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one, or (a captive) that your right hands possess, that will be more suitable, to prevent you from doing injustice” (4:3).            •    It rules that a son’s inheritance should be twice the size of that of a daughter: “Allah (thus) directs you as regards your children’s (inheritance): to the male, a portion equal to that of two females” (4:11).            •    It allows for marriage to pre-pubescent girls, stipulating that Islamic divorce procedures “shall apply to those who have not yet menstruated” (65:4).
Robert Spencer (The Complete Infidel's Guide to the Koran)
We should get back,” she said softly. “It’ll be getting dark soon. And I’m tired.” Brimming with the energy of youth, Swift Antelope and Amy leaped to their feet, eager to be gone. When Loretta stood, Hunter grasped her ankle. “We will follow later,” he said huskily. Swift Antelope flashed a knowing grin and took Amy’s hand to hurry her along. Loretta gazed after them, her color deepening. When she looked down at Hunter, her eyes were wide with wariness. “Why aren’t we going now?” “You know why.” He tightened his hold on her ankle and tugged her closer, rolling over onto his back to avail himself of the view. He knew she wasn’t aware of how revealing a knee-length skirt could be when a man eyed it from the ground up, and he managed to keep a straight face so she wouldn’t guess. “Come here, little one.” “I want to go back.” He hoped she stood there arguing for a time. “Obey your husband.” She wrinkled her nose. “It’s broad daylight.” “Keemah, come.” Growing tired of just looking when he could be touching, Hunter cocked his head and let her see him leering. He was awarded a fetching glimpse of slender, creamy thighs and honey gold. She gasped and dropped to her knees as if someone had dealt a blow to the backs of her legs. Tucking her skirt under her knees, she cried, “Have you no shame?” His answer was a slow grin. Seizing her wrist, he drew her toward him. “There is no shame. You are my woman.
Catherine Anderson (Comanche Moon (Comanche, #1))
Mortal man, fear and obey your Immortal God Almighty
Ernest Agyemang Yeboah
You must teach her, eh? If you go down in battle and I have to take her into my lodge circle, I want to know her children are yours.” “She will learn. I will teach her honor if I kill her doing it.” Warrior plucked a blade of grass and began to nibble on it, his expression distant. Hunter recognized the signs. His brother’s thoughts were flitting to yet another place. After a moment Warrior spat and said, “Old Man tells me that you may have to strike the girl to make her obey. That is their way. She may not understand anything else. This worries me. You have a heavy hand when you grow angry. Normally, I wouldn’t be concerned, but with the yellow-hair I’m afraid your patience will snap like a wet bowstring.” Hunter scooped a handful of wood chips and tossed them into the flames. The flare of heat matched his mood. “She’s my woman, tah-mah. Let me do the worrying.” “But her bones are like a bird’s. If you lost your temper with her and used your fists, you would shatter them.” Hunter scowled and made no reply. Old Man, who had been standing nearby and listening, joined them at the fire to pour himself another measure of coffee. Once his cup was filled, he stepped back from the flames. “Ai-ee, Hunter, are you planning to be our dinner? It’s already so hot in these woods that I’m about to stifle.” Hunter had chosen to crouch by the fire because he hoped no one would join him there, but he saw no point in telling Old Man and his brother that. “A warrior can find great truths by searching the flames.” “You have troubles with your woman, eh?” Old Man smiled. “You young braves! All too proud to seek advice. I lived with the tosi tivo for many winters, remember. I know things about them that you don’t.” A rakish grin slanted across Old Man’s crinkled face. “Especially about the women.” Hunter wasn’t in the mood for advice. “The girl is half my size. I think I can handle her without calling council.” “You disappoint me, Hunter. Where is the patience you show with the wild horses you train? Has it gone the way of the wind?” “A horse is worth the trouble. A yellow-hair is not.
Catherine Anderson (Comanche Moon (Comanche, #1))
Koranic polygamy has also come to the United States. In November 2007, a Muslim woman sent a letter to Board of Directors of the Islamic Center of New England complaining that her husband “was able to marry illegally and secretly and without my knowledge three [A]merican [M]uslim women, and because of that my self and my children have suffered and still suffering tremendously.” She laid some of the responsibility at the feet of the leaders of the Islamic Center: “Because of the failure of the Islamic center as well the Imams to prevent such misconduct, I had no choice but to file for divorce.” She threatened to “expose this misconduct to the court and media if I have to, I also hope through this letter that you will make sure that this victimizations [sic] doesn’t happen to any other sisters.”38 This was no isolated case. According to researcher David Rusin, “estimates for the United States typically run into the tens of thousands of polygamous unions.”39 In May 2008 researchers estimated that between 50,000 and 100,000 Muslims were living in polygamous arrangements in the United States.40 And Muslim imams don’t seem concerned about U.S. laws forbidding the practice: Ibrahim Hooper of the Council on American-Islamic Relations asserted that a “minority” of Muslims in America were polygamous, and that “Islamic scholars would differ on whether one could do so while living in the United States.”41 He didn’t say anything about the necessity of obeying U.S. laws in this regard. Toronto imam Aly Hindy explained that such laws would have no force for Muslims: “This is in our religion and nobody can force us to do anything against our religion. If the laws of the country conflict with Islamic law, if one goes against the other, then I am going to follow Islamic law, simple as that.”42 The Koran has further gifts for men as well. As we have seen, it stipulates that if a man cannot deal justly with multiples wives, then he should marry only one, or resort to “the captives that your right hands possess”—that is, slave girls (4:3).
Robert Spencer (The Complete Infidel's Guide to the Koran)
Would you like to hack out with me, Eve?” The smile disappeared. “I’m not dressed appropriately. Thank you for the invitation, nonetheless.” He hadn’t expected her to accept, though he had wanted to hear her reply. He shifted closer to her in the stall, close enough that he could stretch out a hand to his horse and not be overheard by the lads. “I’d put you up on Willy here. He’s gentle as a lamb under saddle.” “You’d let me ride your prize racing stud?” The longing in her voice was palpable. “I don’t think he’s going to hear, see, or obey anybody else when you’re in the vicinity. Willy’s in love.” The blighted beast nickered deep in its chest as if in agreement. “What a charming fellow.” Eve’s bare hand scratched right behind Willy’s ear, and if he’d been a dog, the stallion’s back leg would have twitched with pleasure. What was wrong with a man when he wanted to tell his horse: She petted me first, so don’t get any ideas? “I’d love to see you on him, Lucas. I’ll bet he has marvelous paces.” Now the smile was aimed at Deene, and even the horse seemed to be looking at him beseechingly. “I cannot disappoint a guest. We’ll have some luncheon up at the house, and the lads can saddle him up.” As Deene escorted the lady from the loose box, Willy managed to look crestfallen before he went back to desultorily lipping at his hay. “Some
Grace Burrowes (Lady Eve's Indiscretion (The Duke's Daughters, #4; Windham, #7))
Said Poor Richard: He that cannot obey cannot command. Be slow in choosing a friend, slower in changing. Well done is better than well said. God helps them that help themselves. It is better to take many injuries then to give one. Diligence is the mother of good luck. The worst wheel of the cart makes the most noise. Being ignorant is not so much a shame, as being unwilling to learn. What is serving God? ''Tis doing good to man. If your head is wax, don't walk in the sun. When the well's dry, we know the worth of water. Virtue and trade a child's best portion. A good example is the best sermon. Don't judge a man's wealth or piety by their Sunday appearances. Those who in quarrels interpose most often wipe a bloody nose. He that lies down with dogs shall rise up with fleas.
James Daugherty (Poor Richard)
Now, if faith is the gaze of the heart at God, and if this gaze is but the raising of the inward eyes to meet the all-seeing eyes of God, then it follows that it is one of the easiest things possible to do. It would be like God to make the most vital thing easy and place it within the range of possibility for the weakest and poorest of us. Several conclusions may fairly be drawn from all this. The simplicity of it, for instance. Since believing is looking, it can be done without special equipment or religious paraphernalia. God has seen to it that the one life-and-death essential can never be subject to the caprice of accident. Equipment can break down or get lost, water can leak away, records can be destroyed by fire, the minister can be delayed or the church burn down. All these are external to the soul and are subject to accident or mechanical failure: but looking is of the heart and can be done successfully by any man standing up or kneeling down or lying in his last agony a thousand miles from any church. Since believing is looking it can be done any time. No season is superior to another season for this sweetest of all acts. God never made salvation depend upon new moons nor holy days or sabbaths. A man is not nearer to Christ on Easter Sunday than he is, say, on Saturday, August 3, or Monday, October 4. As long as Christ sits on the mediatorial throne every day is a good day and all days are days of salvation. Neither does place matter in this blessed work of believing God. Lift your heart and let it rest upon Jesus and you are instantly in a sanctuary though it be a Pullman berth or a factory or a kitchen. You can see God from anywhere if your mind is set to love and obey Him.
A.W. Tozer (The Pursuit of God)
Cecy, this is hardly the time and place for—” “A tryst?” She laughed. “You think I mean to trap you in this secluded cottage and have my wicked way with you? You should be so lucky. No, remove your shirt. I want a look at your arm.” “My arm?” His eyes narrowed. “Which one?” “Which one do you think?” She crossed to him and began unknotting the cravat at his neck. “The one you injured while wrestling the boar last night.” Oh, the look on his face . . . Cecily wanted to kiss him. He was so adorably befuddled. At last, he’d let slip that hard mask of indifference he’d been wearing since his arrival at Swinford Manor. And in its place—there was Luke. Engaging green eyes, touchable dark brown hair, those lips so perfectly formed for roguish smiles and tender kisses alike. This was the man she’d fallen in love with. The man she still loved now. Yes, he’d changed, but she had too. She was older, wiser, stronger than the girl she’d been. This time, she wouldn’t let him go. “You knew?” She smiled. “I knew.” His breath hitched as she slipped the cravat from his neck. Attempting to ignore the wedge of bare chest it revealed, and the mad pounding of her blood that view inspired, Cecily set to work on his waistcoat buttons. “How?” he asked, obeying her silent urgings to shed the garment. “How did you know?” “It’s a fortunate thing you weren’t assigned to espionage. You’ve no talent for disguise whatsoever. If I hadn’t suspected already, I would have figured it out this afternoon. My stocking was found in this remote cottage, and you just happen to know the secrets of the door latch? Then there’s the fact that you’ve been favoring your arm since breakfast.” She undid the small closure of his shirtfront before turning her attention to his cuffs. “But I knew you last night. I’d know your voice anywhere, not to mention your touch.” She gave a shaky sigh, unable to meet his questioning gaze. “It’s like you said, Luke. You still make me tremble, even after all these years.” His voice was soft. “I don’t even know why I followed you. The way we’d parted so angrily . . . I just couldn’t let you go, not like that.” “And I’m glad of it. You saved my life.
Tessa Dare (How to Catch a Wild Viscount)
Slowly, carefully, she threaded her arms around his neck and hugged him. Under her touch, his muscles were rigid, bunched, braced. But then it was like he melted, and his arms came around her in return. For a long moment, he held on tight, like she was his anchor. And then he pulled back enough to rest his forehead on her shoulder, the pain that had rolled off of him moments before replaced by a heavy weariness. She stroked the back of his head and neck, soft caresses meant to comfort. She loved holding this big man in her arms, loved knowing that maybe she wasn’t the only one in need of some comfort and protection and reassurance. “Know what’ll make you feel better?” she said after a little while. “You?” Her heart literally panged in her chest at the sweetness of that single word. She kissed the side of his head, his super short hair tickling her lips. “Besides me.” Reaching out with her hand, she grabbed the milk-shake glass and her spoon. Easy sat up, an eyebrow arched as he looked between her and the ice cream. She scooped some onto the spoon and held it out to him. “Trust me.” Skepticism plain on his face, he ate what she offered. Jenna couldn’t keep from grinning at his lack of reaction. “You clearly need more. Here.” He swallowed the second spoonful, too, but still wasn’t looking particularly better. “This is a very serious case,” she said playfully. “Better make it a double this time.” The spoon nearly overflowed. A smile played around the corners of Easy’s lips, and it filled her chest with a warm pressure. He ate it just before it dripped, humor creeping into his dark eyes. “See? It’s working. I knew it.” This time he stole the spoon right out of her fingers. “Problem is, you aren’t administering this medicine the proper way,” he said as he filled the spoon himself. Jenna grinned again, happy to see lightness returning to his expression. “I’m not?” “Nope,” he said, shaking his head. “This is what will really help.” He held the spoon up to her lips. “How will me taking it—” “No questioning. Just obeying.” There was that cocked eyebrow again. “Oh, is that how it is?” she asked, smirking. When he just stared at her, she gave in and ate the ice cream. Next thing she knew, his lips were on hers. Avoiding the cut on her lip, Easy’s cool tongue slowly snaked over her lips and stroked at her tongue. He grasped the back of her head as he kissed and nibbled at her. The rich flavor of the chocolate combined with another taste that was all Easy and made her moan in appreciation. His grip tightened, his tongue stroked deeper, and a throaty groan spilled from his lips. One more soft press of his lips against hers, and he pulled away. Jenna was nearly panting, and very definitely wanting more. “You’re right,” she said, “that is much more effective.” He gave a rare, open smile, and it made her happy to see it after how sad he’d seemed a few minutes before. “Told ya,” he said with a wink. She nodded. “But, you know, that could’ve been a fluke. Just to be sure it really worked, maybe you should, um, give me another dose?” Easy looked at her a long moment, then leaned in and scooped another spoonful from her nearly empty glass. He held it out to her, making her heart flutter in anticipation. When she tilted her head toward the spoon, he yanked it away and ate the ice cream himself. “No fair,” Jenna sputtered, reaching for the spoon. “That is not what the doctor prescribed.” Holding the spoon above his head put it out of Jenna’s reach, even with them sitting on the bed. She pushed to her knees, grabbed hold of his shoulder, and lunged for it. Laughing, he banded an arm around her lower back and held her in place, easily avoiding her grabs. Jenna couldn’t stop laughing as they wrestled for the spoon. It was stupid and silly and childish . . . and exactly what she needed. And it seemed he did, too. It was perfect.
Laura Kaye (Hard to Hold on To (Hard Ink, #2.5))
We’re cursed,” an old man wailed. “I don’t believe in curses,” said Tom’s uncle firmly. “But our village needs help. One of us must go to the king and request his aid.” Tom stepped forward. “I’ll go to the palace.” The villagers laughed. “Send a boy on such a mission? Ha!” “The king would laugh at us for sending a child.” Tom’s uncle spoke quietly. “No, Tom. You’re too young. I’m head of the village. I’ll go.” Suddenly a small boy, smeared in soot, pushed through the crowd. “Help!” he gasped. “Please help! Our barn is on fire!” “Men! Bring your pails to the river now!” Tom’s uncle roared to the crowd. “The rest of you bring spades to the barn – if we can’t quench the fire we’ll bury it. Quickly!” Tom looked at his uncle as the men rushed to obey. “The village needs you here as its leader, Uncle Henry,” he said. “Please let me go instead.” Tom’s uncle turned to face him, his face serious. “I suppose I have to let you out into the world sooner or later,” he said. He stared into the distance. “Perhaps it’s meant to be…” He shook himself and turned back to Tom. “Yes, you must go to the king. And there is no time to waste – you will have to leave first thing tomorrow!
Adam Blade (Beast Quest and Sea Quest: An Unexpected Adventure)
She awakened with a start to find Macon standing at the foot of the bed, watching her with a grin stretched across his face. His finger and thumb still lingered on her big toe. Stunned, she scooted toward the headboard, as if it could lend her some protection, her eyes wide. Steven’s .45 was in the drawer of the nightstand on his side of the bed. She inched in that direction. “What are you doing here?” she croaked. Macon dragged his eyes over her lush figure, her sleep-rumpled underthings made of the thinnest lawn, and smiled. “You might say I’ve come to admire the spoils. It won’t be long now, Emma, dear. Things are going very badly for Steven. Soon you’ll be giving me fine, redheaded sons. Of course, I won’t be able to keep you here at Fairhaven—that would be indiscreet. We’ll have to get you a place in town.” Emma tried to shield her breasts with one arm as she moved nearer and nearer the side of the bed. “You’re vile, Macon Fairfax, and I’d sooner die than let you touch me. Now, get out of here before I scream!” “You can scream all you want,” he chuckled, spreading his hands wide of his lithe body. “There’s nobody here but the servants, and they wouldn’t dream of interfering, believe me.” Emma swallowed hard. She couldn’t be sure whether he was bluffing; after all, this was Macon’s house as well as Cyrus’s. If he gave instructions, they were probably obeyed. “Get out,” she said again. Her hand was on the knob of the nightstand drawer, but she knew she wasn’t going to have time to get the pistol out and aim it before Macon was on her. He was too close, and his eyes showed that he knew exactly what she meant to do. “It won’t be so bad, Emma,” he coaxed, his voice a syrupy croon by then. “I know how to make you happy, and you’re in just the right place for me to prove it.” “Don’t touch me,” Emma breathed, shrinking back against the headboard, her eyes wide with horror. “Steven will kill you if you touch me!” “You wouldn’t tell him.” Macon was standing over her by then, looking down into her face. She could see a vein pulsing at his right temple as he set his jaw for a moment. “You’d keep it to yourself because he wouldn’t have a chance in hell of winning this case if he assaulted me in a fit of rage—would he?” Emma’s heart was thundering against her ribs and she was sure she was going to throw up. She tried to move away from Macon, but he reached out and grasped her hard by the hair. “Please,” she whispered. He indulged in a small, tight smile. “Don’t humiliate yourself by begging, darling. It won’t save you. Keep your pleas for those last delicious moments before pleasure overtakes you.” Bile rushed into the back of Emma’s throat. “Let me go.” He pressed her flat against the mattress, his hand still entangled in her hair. She gazed up at him in terror, unable to speak at all. The crash of the door against the inside wall startled them both. Emma’s eyes swung to the doorway, and so did Macon’s. Nathaniel was standing there, still dressed in the suit he’d worn to Steven’s trial, his tie loose, his Fairfax eyes riveted on his cousin’s face. In his shaking hand was a derringer, aimed directly at Macon’s middle. “Let her go,” he said furiously. Macon released Emma, but only to shrug out of his coat and hang it casually over the bedpost. “Get out of here, Nathaniel,” he said, sounding as unconcerned as if he were about to open a book or pour himself a drink. “This is business for a man, not a boy.” Emma was breathing hard, her eyes fixed on Nathaniel, pleading with him. With everything in her, she longed to dive for the other side of the bed and run for her life, but she knew she wouldn’t escape Macon. Not without Nathaniel’s help. “I won’t let you hurt her,” the boy said with quiet determination. The derringer, wavering before, was steady now. Macon
Linda Lael Miller (Emma And The Outlaw (Orphan Train, #2))
My little man,” she said. “No.” She stretched out her hand to him. “Come.” “I can’t,” he said. “Sam, I’m your mother. I love you. Come with me.” “Mom…” “Just reach out to me. I’m safe. I can carry you away, out of this place.” Sam shook his head slowly, slowly, like he was drowning in molasses. Something was happening to time. Astrid wasn’t breathing. Nothing was moving. The whole world was frozen. “It will be like it was,” his mother said. “It was never…,” he began. “You lied to me. You never told me…” “I never lied,” she said, and frowned at him, disappointed. “You never told me I had a brother. You never told—” “Just come with me,” she said, impatient now, jerking her hand a little like she would when he was a little kid and refused to take her hand to cross the street. “Come with me now, Sam. You’ll be safe and out of this place.” He reacted instinctively, the little boy again, reacted to the “mommy” voice, the “obey me” voice. He reached for her, stretched his hand out to her. And pulled it back. “I can’t,” Sam whispered. “I have someone I have to stay here for.” Anger flashed in his mother’s eyes, a green light, surreal, before she blinked and it was gone. And then, out of the bleached, unreal world, Caine stepped into the eerie light. Sam’s mother smiled at Caine, and he stared at her wonderingly. “Nurse Temple,” Caine said. “Mom,” she corrected. “It’s time for both my boys to join me, to come away with me. Out of this place.” Caine seemed spellbound, unable to tear his gaze away from the gentle, smiling face, the piercing blue eyes. “Why?” Caine asked in a small child’s voice. Their mother said nothing. Once again, for just a heartbeat, her blue eyes glowed a toxic green before returning to cool, icy blue. “Why him and not me?” Caine asked. “It’s time to come with me now,” their mother insisted. “We’ll be a family. Far from here.” “You first, Sam,” Caine said. “Go with your mother.” “No,” Sam said. Caine’s face darkened with rage. “Go, Sam. Go. Go. Go with her.” He was shouting now. He seemed to want to grab Sam physically, push him toward the mother they had not quite shared, but his movements were odd, disjointed, a jerky stick figure in a dream. Caine gave up trying. “Jack told you,” he said dully. “No one told me anything,” Sam said. “I have things I have to do here.” Their mother extended her arms to them, angry, demanding to be heeded. “Come to me. Come to me.” Caine shook his head slowly. “No.” “But you’re the man of the house now, Sam,” his mother wheedled. “My little man. Mine.” “No,” Sam said. “I’m my own man.” “And I was never yours,” Caine sneered. “Too late now, Mother.” The face of their mother wavered. The tender flesh seemed to break apart in jigsaw-puzzle pieces. The gently smiling, pleading mouth melted, collapsed inward. In its place a mouth ringed with needle-sharp teeth. Eyes filled with green fire. “I’ll have you yet,” the monster raged with sudden violence. Caine stared in horror. “What are you?” “What am I?” the monster mocked him savagely. “I’m your future. You’ll come to me on your own in the dark place, Caine. You will come willingly to me.
Michael Grant
And in 1513, the Spanish government created a kind of Miranda rights–style document that was to be read (in Spanish—incomprehensible to the indigenous peoples!) to those about to be conquered. It was the summary of the Gospel as they understood it; it was their core message, their “good news,” the metanarrative that legitimized their white Christian supremacy: On the part of the King, Don Fernando, and of Doña Juana I, his daughter, Queen of Castille and Léon, subduers of the barbarous nations, we their servants notify and make known to you, as best we can, that the Lord our God, Living and Eternal, created the Heaven and the Earth, and one man and one woman, of whom you and we, all the men of the world at the time, were and are descendants, and all those who came after and before us…. Of all these nations God our Lord gave charge to one man, called St. Peter, that he should be Lord and Superior of all the men in the world, that all should obey him, and that he should be the head of the whole Human Race…. One of these Pontiffs, who succeeded that St. Peter as Lord of the world, in the dignity and seat which I have before mentioned, made donation of these isles and Tierra-firme to the aforesaid King and Queen and to their successors, our lords…. Wherefore, as best we can, we ask and require you that you consider what we have said to you, and that you take the time that shall be necessary to understand and deliberate upon it, and that you acknowledge the Church as the Ruler and Superior of the whole world…. But, if you do not do this, and maliciously make delay in it, I certify to you that, with the help of God, we shall powerfully enter into your country, and shall make war against you in all ways and manners that we can, and shall subject you to the yoke and obedience of the Church and of their Highnesses; we shall take you and your wives and your children, and shall make slaves of them, and as such shall sell and dispose of them as their Highnesses may command.
Brian D. McLaren (The Great Spiritual Migration: How the World's Largest Religion Is Seeking a Better Way to Be Christian)
Shall that be shut to man, which to the beast Is open? or will God incense his ire For such a petty trespass? and not praise Rather your dauntless virtue, whom the pain Of death denounced, whatever thing death be, Deterred not from achieving what might lead To happier life, knowledge of good and evil; Of good, how just? of evil, if what is evil Be real, why not known, since easier shunned? God therefore cannot hurt ye, and be just; Not just, not God: not feared then, nor obeyed: Your fear itself of death removes the fear. Why then was this forbid? Why, but to awe; Why, but to keep ye low and ignorant, His worshippers? He knows that in the day Ye eat thereof, your eyes, that seem so clear, Yet are but dim, shall perfectly be then Opened and cleared, and ye shall be as gods, Knowing both good and evil, as they know.
John Milton (Paradise Lost)
Believe me, you will find it no easy matter to turn to God whenever you please. It is a true saying of the godly Leighton, "The way of sin is down hill; a man cannot stop when he wants too." Holy desires and serious convictions are not like the servants of the Centurion, ready to come and go at your desire; rather they are like the unicorn in Job, they will not obey your voice, nor attend at your bidding. It was said of the famous general Hannibal of old, when he could have taken the city he warred against, he would not, and in time when he would, he could not. Beware lest the same kind of thing happens to you in the matter of eternal life.
J.C. Ryle (Thoughts for Young Men)
We must become what we wish to teach. As an aside to parents, teachers, psychotherapists, and managers who may be reading this book to gain insight on how to support the self-esteem of others, I want to say that the place to begin is still with oneself. If one does not understand how the dynamics of self-esteem work internally—if one does not know by direct experience what lowers or raises one’s own self-esteem—one will not have that intimate understanding of the subject necessary to make an optimal contribution to others. Also, the unresolved issues within oneself set the limits of one’s effectiveness in helping others. It may be tempting, but it is self-deceiving to believe that what one says can communicate more powerfully than what one manifests in one’s person. We must become what we wish to teach. There is a story I like to tell psychotherapy students. In India, when a family encounters a problem, they are not likely to consult a psychotherapist (hardly any are available); they consult the local guru. In one village there was a wise man who had helped this family more than once. One day the father and mother came to him, bringing their nine-year-old son, and the father said, “Master, our son is a wonderful boy and we love him very much. But he has a terrible problem, a weakness for sweets that is ruining his teeth and health. We have reasoned with him, argued with him, pleaded with him, chastised him—nothing works. He goes on consuming ungodly quantities of sweets. Can you help us?” To the father’s surprise, the guru answered, “Go away and come back in two weeks.” One does not argue with a guru, so the family obeyed. Two weeks later they faced him again, and the guru said, “Good. Now we can proceed.” The father asked, “Won’t you tell us, please, why you sent us away for two weeks. You have never done that before.” And the guru answered, “I needed the two weeks because I, too, have had a lifelong weakness for sweets. Until I had confronted and resolved that issue within myself, I was not ready to deal with your son.” Not all psychotherapists like this story.
Nathaniel Branden (Six Pillars of Self-Esteem)
The gods of the old world have stood aside, obeyed the ancient laws giving free will to men, and now, when our realm and yours hang in the balance, we are still bound by our covenants. The laws are clear: we can act only through man. And in all the world, there are only two strong enough to defeat them. One born for it, the other through great sacrifice.
Jessica Leake (Beyond a Darkened Shore)
I spin around in a circle and sing, “Do you want to build a snowman?” And then we’re both giggling again. “You’re going to get us kicked out of here,” he warns. I grab his hands and make him spin around with me as fast as I can. “Quit acting like you really belong in a nursing home, old man!” I yell. He drops my hands and we both stumble. Then he grabs a fistful of snow off the ground and starts to pack it into a ball. “Old man, huh? I’ll show you an old man!” I dart away from him, slipping and sliding in the snow. “Don’t you dare, John Ambrose McClaren!” He chases after me, laughing and breathing hard. He manages to grab me around the waist and raises his arm like he’s going to put the snowball down my back, but at the last second he releases me. His eyes go wide. “Oh my God. Are you wearing my grandma’s nightgown under your coat?” Giggling, I say, “Wanna see? It’s really racy.” I start to unzip my coat. “Wait, turn around first.” Shaking his head, John says, “This is weird,” but he obeys. As soon as his back is turned, I snatch a handful of snow, form it into a ball, and put it in my coat pocket. “Okay, turn around.” John turns, and I lob the snowball directly at his head. It hits him in the eye. “Ouch!” he yelps, wiping it with his coat sleeve. I gasp and move toward him. “Oh my God. I’m so sorry. Are you okay--” John’s already scooping up more snow and lunging toward me. And so begins our snowball fight. We chase each other around, and I get in another great hit square in his back. We call a truce when I nearly slip and fall on my butt. Luckily, John catches me just in time. He doesn’t let go right away. We stare at each other for a second, his arm around my waist. There’s a snowflake on his eyelashes. He says, “If I didn’t know you were still hung up on Kavinsky, I would kiss you right now.” I shiver. Up until Peter, the most romantic thing that ever happened to me was with John Ambrose McClaren, in the rain, with the soccer balls. Now this. How strange that I’ve never even dated John, and he’s in two of my most romantic moments. John releases me. “You’re freezing. Let’s go back inside.
Jenny Han (P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #2))
1Christ set us free ·so that we could live in freedom [to a place of freedom; or by means of freedom; 4:31]. So stand strong. Do not ·change and go back into the slavery of the law [Lsubmit/be fastened to a yoke of slavery]. 2Listen, I Paul tell you that if you ·go back to the law by being [Llet yourself be] circumcised, Christ does you no good. 3Again, I warn every man: If you allow yourselves to be circumcised, you ·must follow [are obligated to obey] all the law. 4If you try to be ·made right with God [justified] through the law, ·your life with Christ is over [Lyou are alienated/separated/severed from Christ]—you have ·left [fallen away from] God’s grace. 5For by the Spirit and through faith we wait eagerly for ·a right relationship with God [Lrighteousness]—the object of our hope. 6·When we are [LFor] in Christ Jesus, ·it is not important if we are circumcised or not [Lneither circumcision nor uncircumcision accomplishes anything]. The important thing is faith—the kind of faith that works through love. 7You were running a good race. Who ·stopped [hindered] you from ·following [or obeying; or your conviction about] the ·true way [truth]? 8This ·change [persuasion; enticement] did not come from the One who ·chose [called] you. 9Be careful! “Just a little ·yeast [leaven; 1 Cor. 5:6–7] makes the whole batch of dough rise [Ca little error will spread through the whole community].” 10But I ·trust [Lhave confidence/am persuaded about you] in the Lord that you will ·not believe those different ideas [take no different view]. Whoever is ·confusing [troubling] you with such ideas will ·be punished [pay the penalty; Lbear the condemnation], ·no matter who he is [Lwhoever he may be]. 11My brothers and sisters, if I am still preaching ·that a man must be circumcised [Lcircumcision; Csome were evidently accusing Paul of this], why am I still being ·attacked [persecuted]? If I still taught circumcision, ·my preaching about the cross would not be a problem [the scandal/offense of the cross has been removed/abolished]. 12I wish the people who are bothering you would ·castrate themselves [make themselves eunuchs; Lcut it off]! [CPaul sarcastically says that if circumcision is so helpful, why not go even further?] 13My brothers and sisters, God called you to ·be free [Lfreedom], but do not use your freedom as an ·excuse to do what pleases [opportunity/occasion for] your ·sinful self [sinful nature; flesh]. [LBut; Rather] Serve each other with love. 14[LFor] The whole law is ·made complete [summed up; fulfilled] in this one command: “Love your neighbor as you love yourself [Lev. 19:18].” 15[LBut] If you go on ·hurting each other and tearing each other apart [Lbiting and devouring one another], be careful, or you will completely ·destroy [or consume] each other.
Anonymous (Expanded Bible)
Unless you and I strive to obey the Lord in our homes, we will create a spiritually poisonous atmosphere that will infect our children with disrespect for authority—both ours and God’s. Pay close attention to this principle: we reap what we sow. Our disobedience today may become our children’s rebellion tomorrow.
Charles F. Stanley (Man of God: Leading Your Family by Allowing God to Lead You)
APRIL 4 SUGGESTED READING: ACTS 5:17–32 … We ought to obey God rather than men (Acts 5:29b). You know exactly in what respects you have refused to obey the Lord and persisted in having your own way. When He said, “Drink with Me,” you responded, “No, Lord, I want to have the pattern and imprint of my church. I want to go their way. I want to live as they live and adhere to their decisions in my life.” Instead of having fellowship with Him, you have preferred the fellowship of other Christians. The Lord stands beside you very patiently, but in judgment as you refuse Him and obey others. Do you want to know Paul’s attitude about what other Christians thought of him? He said, “With me it is a very small thing that I should be judged of you, or of man’s judgment …” (1 Cor. 4:3a). Is this true with you, brother and sister? If the Christian crowd you mingle with judge you, so what? Are they your god, or is the crucified Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ? We are called to faithfulness to the Lord Jesus Christ. Any movement or person that contradicts Jesus, God will blast to pieces. PRAYER THOUGHT: Deliver me from obeying other people instead of You.
Oswald Chambers (Devotions for a Deeper Life)
Are you for us or for our adversaries?” he asked. “No,” said the figure. Caleb said, “No, you are not for us, or no, you are not for our adversaries?” The figure said, “Neither. I am the commander of the army of Yahweh.” Joshua whispered under his breath, “The Angel of Yahweh.” He was the Son of Man in an earthly presence. Joshua and Caleb dropped to their knees and worshipped the Angel, who said, “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are is holy.” Joshua and Caleb obeyed. Caleb knew in his heart this was another connection to Moses who had removed his sandals before the burning bush of Yahweh’s presence. The Angel spoke with a calm assurance, “I would wager you are wondering how in the world you are going to assault the mighty walls of Jericho.” Joshua said, “The thought had crossed our minds, my Lord. You would not happen to have any secrets about its weaknesses that might help us?” “No,” said the Angel. “But be strong and courageous this day, for I will tell you how you will conquer the city by the power of Yahweh.
Brian Godawa (Caleb Vigilant (Chronicles of the Nephilim Book 6))
I accept your offering, and I bid you welcome my children, my Sons of Rapha.” Goliath responded with the respect he showed only to the gods but to no man, “We are your bondservants, my lord and god. Command us and we will obey.” Dagon growled, and then spoke. “The skies are very dark over the land of Canaan. The time has come for me to reveal to you your most important calling.” Goliath responded, “We have trained for twenty-five years. We have organized the Rephaim forces of Philistia to be the most feared regiment in the land. We are ready for any commission.” Dagon explained, “The reason I formed your warrior cult those many years ago was not merely to defeat the Israelites, as abominable as they are. The real purpose of your existence is to seek out an individual, a Chosen Seed within Israel, who was prophesied to crush the head of the Serpent.” “The destruction of our seed,” muttered Goliath. “Precisely,” said Dagon. “Is this the gibborim ruler of Israel, King Saul?” “No. Saul is cursed. We believe the messiah is someone else. But we do not know who. He is already within the ranks of Israel, but he has not risen. He has not shown himself. I want you to use conspiracy and intrigue to find out who this Chosen Seed is. And then I want you to hunt him down and kill him.” “Gladly, mighty Dagon.” The implications were obvious. If they killed the savior of Israel, they would kill its only hope, and the nation would be a grain harvest ready for winnowing with the scythe of Dagon. He said, “We will draw him out, and cut him into pieces.
Brian Godawa (David Ascendant (Chronicles of the Nephilim, #7))
The real power is power over men. How does one man assert his power over another, Winston? By making him suffer. Obedience is not enough. Unless he is suffering, how can you be sure that he is obeying your will and not his own? Power is in inflicting pain and humiliation. Power is tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together in new shapes of your choosing." (Orwell)
Victoria Louise Sadler (Unconventional Desires: A diary of discovery... Domination, Submission, Sadism and Masochism)
She paused at the threshold of the room and looked back at the pair on the settee with a troubled frown. Lillian had fallen fast asleep, her head centered heavily on Westcliff’s chest. As the earl met Daisy’s unhappy gaze, one of his brows raised in silent inquiry. “My father…” Daisy began, then bit her lip. This man was her father’s business partner. It was not appropriate to run to Westcliff with complaints. But the patience in his expression encouraged her to continue. “He called me a parasite,” she said, keeping her voice soft to avoid disturbing Lillian. “He asked me to tell him how the world has benefitted from my existence, or what I had ever done for anyone.” “And your reply?” Westcliff asked. “I…couldn’t think of anything to say.” Westcliff’s coffee-colored eyes were unfathomable. He made a gesture for her to approach the settee, and she obeyed. To her astonishment, he took her hand in his and gripped it warmly. The usually circumspect earl had never done such a thing before. “Daisy,” Westcliff said gently, “most lives are not distinguished by great achievements. They are measured by an infinite number of small ones. Each time you do a kindness for someone or bring a smile to his face, it gives your life meaning. Never doubt your value, little friend. The world would be a dismal place without Daisy Bowman in it.
Lisa Kleypas (Scandal in Spring (Wallflowers, #4))
Sir, 1 haven't any country, any more than I have any father. But I'm going to have one. I don't want anything of your country, except to let me alone—to go peaceably out of it; and when I get to Canada, where the laws will own me and protect me, that shall be my country, and its laws I will obey. But if any man tries to stop me, let him take care, for I am desperate. I'll fight for my liberty to the last breath I breathe. You say your fathers did it; if it was right for them, it is right for me!
Harriet Beecher Stowe (Uncle Tom's Cabin)
Sad will be the retrospect in that day when men stand face to face with eternity. The whole life will present itself just as it has been. The world’s pleasures, riches, and honors will not then seem so important. Men will then see that the righteousness they despised is alone of value. They will see that they have fashioned their characters under the deceptive allurements of Satan. The garments they have chosen are the badge of their allegiance to the first great apostate. Then they will see the results of their choice. They will have a knowledge of what it means to transgress the commandments of God. There will be no second probation in which to prepare for eternity. It is in this life that we are to put on the robe of Christ’s righteousness. This is our only opportunity to form characters for the home which Christ has made ready for those who obey His commandments. The days of our probation are fast closing. The end is near. Solemnly there come down to us through the centuries the warning words of our Lord from the Mount of Olives: “Take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and so that day come upon you unawares.” Beware lest it find you unready. Take heed lest you be found at the King’s feast without a wedding garment. “In such an hour as ye think not the Son of Man cometh.” “Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.” “Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” -ST 11-22-05
Ellen G. White (Sabbath School Lesson Comments By Ellen G. White - 2nd Quarter 2015 (April, May, June 2015 Book 32))
The way of wisdom says, “It is only reasonable to obey God’s law. After all, he created all things, so he knows how they work. Therefore, we expect his commands to be effective, to bring us good.” As Moses said, God gave Israel his commands “for your own good” (Deut. 10:13). The way of trust says, “God loves us and would never mislead us.” We should behave as he directs and trust him to make it work. If we do what is right for him, he will do right for us. The way of gratitude judges that it is fitting for us to obey God without reserve because God first gave himself without reserve to us when he redeemed us. Because he has done so much for us, we should be willing to do much for him. These perspectives contain profound truth. They are certainly superior to the way of merit, where people obey God to earn or retain his favor. And they surpass the way of fear, where people obey God to avert punishment. It is always good to obey God’s law, yet he cannot be pleased with anyone who obeys him strictly to merit rewards or avoid penalties. Such obedience is selfish, even manipulative.
Daniel M. Doriani (The New Man: Becoming a Man After God's Heart)
Commands don’t change people, love does. Unless God first loves a man and reconciles that man to himself, he cannot obey God’s commands. If we tell an atheist, “Store up for yourselves treasures in heaven,” he cannot, for the command is nonsense to him. If he believes there is no god in heaven, why should he plan for it? If we tell a teenager who despises her mother, “You must respect your mother,” she cannot do so. She cannot show respect if she does not have respect. She may obey her mother, but she will do it grudgingly, with rolling eyes and slouching shoulders. She needs a changed relationship with her mother—a change of heart. Similarly, while it makes sense to call a godless man to repent, it is a bit strange to tell him to stop sinning. We might as well command a drowning man to swim. It is true that the drowning man needs to swim, but the problem, precisely, is that he cannot. Likewise, a man who has enthroned his career or his appetites as his gods will not and cannot obey a command to put God first. As Paul says, “The sinful mind is hostile to God. It does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so” (Rom. 8:7).
Daniel M. Doriani (The New Man: Becoming a Man After God's Heart)
But I cannot believe that you, or anyone else, would be asked to slaughter your fellow human beings, whatever race or religion they are, for no strategic purpose at all. For God’s sake, man, we’re Germans. We’re the most cultured, scientifically advanced people on earth. We believe in laws, in order, in correct procedures. So whatever you’re ordered to do, there will be a reason for it. You must simply trust that the reason is good. And if any of your men come to you and say, ‘I can’t do this, I don’t believe it’s right,’ just tell them what I have told you. It is not our business to think. It is our business to obey.
David Thomas (Ostland)
Our Blessed Lord used an illustration of this mystery, “You cannot understand the blowing of the wind, but you obey its laws and thus harness its force; so also with the Spirit. Obey the law of the wind, and it will fill your sails and carry you onward. Obey the law of the Spirit and you will know the new birth. Do not postpone relationship with this law simply because you cannot fathom its mystery intellectually.” The wind breathes where it will And thou canst hear the sound of it, But knowest nothing of the way it came Or the way it goes; So it is, when a man is born By the breath of the Spirit. JOHN 3:8 The
Fulton J. Sheen (Life of Christ)
He would have liked to continue talking about his mother. He did not suppose, from what he could remember of her, that she had been an unusual woman, still less an intelligent one; and yet she had possessed a kind of nobility, a kind of purity, simply because the standards that she obeyed were private ones. Her feelings were her own, and could not be altered from outside. It would not have occurred to her that an action which is ineffectual thereby becomes meaningless. If you loved someone, you loved him, and when you had nothing else to give, you still gave him love. When the last of the chocolate was gone, his mother had clasped the child in her arms. It was no use, it changed nothing, it did not produce more chocolate, it did not avert the child’s death or her own; but it seemed natural to her to do it. The refugee woman in the boat had also covered the little boy with her arm, which was no more use against the bullets than a sheet of paper. The terrible thing that the Party had done was to persuade you that mere impulses, mere feelings, were of no account, while at the same time robbing you of all power over the material world. When once you were in the grip of the Party, what you felt or did not feel, what you did or refrained from doing, made literally no difference. Whatever happened you vanished, and neither you nor your actions were ever heard of again. You were lifted clean out of the stream of history. And yet to the people of only two generations ago, this would not have seemed all-important, because they were not attempting to alter history. They were governed by private loyalties which they did not question. What mattered were individual relationships, and a completely helpless gesture, an embrace, a tear, a word spoken to a dying man, could have value in itself. The
George Orwell (Animal Farm and 1984)
Matthew 8:26, NLT Jesus responded, “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!” Then he got up and rebuked the wind and waves, and suddenly there was a great calm. Mark 4:39-40, NLT When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Silence! Be still!” Suddenly the wind stopped, and there was a great calm. 40Then he asked them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” Setting the Scene Both Mark and Luke record the sequence of Jesus’ response to the impassioned plea of the disciples as miracle first, comment after. Matthew tells us Jesus questioned their faith and then spoke to the wind and waves. The order is probably not significant, since Jesus may have spoken with the men before and after the miracle. But Matthew, who was present in the boat, seems to capture more vividly the style Jesus usually used with his disciples. The thinking and the challenge came first, followed by the miracle. As we’ve already seen in the incident with the lame man lowered through the roof, Jesus said what needed to be said and then confirmed his words with a miracle (see Mark 2:1-12). Jesus asked a question and then made a statement: “Why are you afraid?” and “You have so little faith!” Fears deserve to be questioned. We ought to ask ourselves regularly, “Why am I afraid?” If we never doubt our fears, they will control us. As we have already learned this week, some fears are legitimate, and some fears are not. Sometimes we don’t need to be afraid. When we are with Jesus, we don’t have to fear. When fear is in control, faith is stifled. Acting fearfully is not acting faithfully. Jesus’ question wasn’t directed toward the disciples’ feelings but their actions. The problem arises when we give in to fear and make it the basis of our decisions—which is what the disciples were doing. They needed faith—as Jesus pointed out. Faith doesn’t ignore feelings; it simply refuses to obey them. Getting Personal What is your usual strategy for handling fear? To what degree are your choices determined by fear? When did you last act in faith in the face of fear? What was the outcome? Acknowledging fears can be an important first step in disabling their influence. The psalm writer had a great thought when he wrote, “When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you” (Psalm 56:3, NLT). What you do before and after you are afraid can be as important as no longer being afraid. Talking to God In prayer today, identify areas of worry and fear. Thank God that he is aware of each one and that, in love, he is working to protect and preserve you.
Anonymous (Life Application Study Bible Devotional: Daily Wisdom from the Life of Jesus)
know. That’s the real reason I resigned from teaching. Also, some of you know that we have already finished our missionary training. “You will be interested to know that our good friend Mr. Seneth Paddler, whom you boys affectionately call ‘Old Man Paddler,’ has undertaken to support both of us while we are on the mission field.” Mrs. Jesperson waited a minute while a lot of us asked questions, and then just as we were getting close to our school again, she said, “Some of you have said you don’t like Mr. Black. But I’m sure you will like him just as soon as you get better acquainted with him. Be sure to obey him in everything and be as kind and gentlemanly as possible. I am sure you will have a very happy year together. Remember that he does not know you as I have known you, and at first he may not understand you. Please be loyal to the principles of the Sugar Creek School, which have been yours for years. “I think it was very generous and thoughtful of Mr. Black to let us have this time together.
Paul Hutchens (Sugar Creek Gang Set Books 7-12 (Sugar Creek Gang Original Series))
As I already noted, the fear of man is described in God’s Word as a snare (Proverbs 29:25). A snare is a trap. It traps you in your mind and keeps you from obeying, trusting, and fearing the Lord.
Trillia J. Newbell (Fear and Faith: Finding the Peace Your Heart Craves)
All things are difficult to Sloth. Would you persuade, speak of Interest, not of Reason. Teach your child to hold his tongue, he’ll learn fast enough to speak. He that cannot obey, cannot command. The magistrate should obey the Laws, the People should obey the magistrate. He that waits upon a Fortune, is never sure of a Dinner. A learned blockhead is a greater blockhead than an ignorant one. Keep thy shop, and thy shop will keep thee. Three may keep a secret if two of them are dead. Early to bed and early to rise, makes a man healthy wealthy and wise. To be humble to Superiors is Duty, to Equals Courtesy, to Inferiors Nobleness.
Harper Academic (10 Common Core Essentials: Nonfiction)
Once you understand the logic behind modern schooling, its tricks and traps are fairly easy to avoid. School trains children to be employees and consumers; teach yours to be leaders and adventurers. School trains children to obey reflexively; teach yours to think critically and independently. Well-schooled kids have a low threshold for boredom; help your own to develop an inner life so that they'll never be bored. Urge them to take on the serious material, the grown-up material, in history, literature, philosophy, music, art, economics, theology — all the stuff schoolteachers know well enough to avoid. Challenge your kids with plenty of solitude so that they can learn to enjoy their own company, to conduct inner dialogues. Well-schooled people are conditioned to dread being alone; they seek constant companionship through the TV, the computer, the cell phone, and through shallow friendships quickly acquired, quickly abandoned. Your children should have a more important life, and they can. Don't let your own children have their childhoods extended, not even for a day. If David Farragut could take command of a captured British warship as a preteen, if Ben Franklin could apprentice himself to a printer at the same age, . . . there's no telling what your own kids could do. (p. xxii) — John Taylor Gatto, Weapons of Mass Instruction
Kenneth W. Royce (Modules For Manhood -- What Every Man Must Know (Volume 1 of 3))
David strode through the battle raging between his men and the castle defenders in the courtyard and headed straight for the keep, intent on his goal. The castle would fall quickly. The defenders lacked leadership and were in disarray. His only concern was whether the castle had a secret tunnel for escape. During the siege, he had spread his men out through the fields surrounding the fortress to keep watch. But he had concentrated his forces for the attack and most were now inside the castle. If there was a tunnel, he must secure the widow and her daughters before they had a chance to escape. He did not relish the idea of having to chase them down through the fields with dogs. The defenders had foolishly waited too long to withdraw to the keep, and most were caught in the courtyard when David’s men burst through the gate. He barely spared them a glance as he ran up the steps of the keep. With several of his warriors at his back, he burst through the doors brandishing his sword. He paused inside the entrance to hall. Women and children were screaming, and the few Blackadder warriors who had made it inside were overturning tables in a useless attempt to set up a defense. “If ye hope for mercy, drop your weapons,” David shouted, making his voice heard above the chaos. He locked gazes with the men who hesitated to obey his order until every weapon clanked to the floor, then he swept his gaze over the women. Their clothing confirmed what he’d known the moment he entered the hall. Blackadder’s widow was not in the room. “Where is she?” he demanded of the closest Blackadder man. “Who, m’lord?” the man said, shifting his gaze to the side. “Your mistress!” David picked him up by the front of his tunic and leaned in close. “Tell me now.” “In her bedchamber,” the man squeaked, pointing to an arched doorway. “’Tis up the stairs.” David caught a sudden whiff of urine and dropped the man to the floor in disgust. The wretch had wet himself. “Take him to the dungeon,” he ordered. The coward had given up his mistress far too easily.
Margaret Mallory (Captured by a Laird (The Douglas Legacy, #1))
September 12   Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan . . . and you will be cleansed. —2 Kings 5:10       The Lord of Israel will never heal an arrogant sinner who thinks he is better than others. In God’s view, there is only one class of sinners: the worst class. Whether publican or Pharisee, the Jewish Saul or the Syrian leper Naaman, every sinner must repent and believe in Jesus Christ. No proud sinner will ever be saved unless he first humbles himself and trusts in Christ alone. In 2 Kings 5, we read that Naaman came to Elisha with his own view of salvation. Asserting that he was a “first-class” sinner, he thought he should come through a different gate than others. He wanted a more dignified gospel, not the gospel of the cross. No, Naaman. You must surrender totally to God’s way of salvation. God had to humble the arrogant Naaman. So instead of sending Elisha personally to greet him, he sent Elisha’s servant Gehazi with the following message: “Mr. Naaman, it is clear that you are a leper. Here is the cure for your leprosy. Go down to the Jordan River—not to the rivers of Damascus, which you think have cleaner water—and immerse yourself in the Jordan seven times, and you will be healed.” Naaman was offended because Elisha did not give him preferential treatment. In fact, he almost missed his healing because of his pride. His wise servants, though, persuaded him to heed the prophet’s counsel. And so he humbled himself, went to the Jordan, and stripped off his regalia, displaying his leprosy for all to see. He immersed himself in the muddy waters of the Jordan seven times, according to the word of the man of God. Where there is obedience, there is faith. Where there is faith, there is obedience. And as he obeyed, Naaman was cured of his leprosy. If we seek salvation our own way, whether in materialism, philosophy, science, good deeds, or in any other religion, we will not find it. Jesus Christ alone is Savior. “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). I urge you, do not be offended by the gospel and die in your sins. Follow Naaman into the river Jordan. Call upon the name of the Lord, and be washed clean.
P.G. Mathew (Daily Delight: Meditations from the Scriptures)
How does one man assert his power over another, Winston?” Winston thought. “By making him suffer,” he said. “Exactly. By making him suffer. Obedience is not enough. Unless he is suffering, how can you be sure that he is obeying your will and not his own? Power is in inflicting pain and humiliation. Power is in tearing human minds to pieces and putting them together again in new shapes of your own choosing.
George Orwell (1984)
Harald Sigurdson, I am a fool who has come to his senses. I obey you in all things. I love you in all things. I am your man. Let us now fight as brothers!’ Harald did not hear these words. For he too was a berserk. . . .
Henry Treece (Viking's Sunset (Viking Saga, #3))
And we beseech you, brethren, to know them which labour among you, and are over you in the Lord, and admonish you; 13 And to esteem them very highly in love for their work's sake. And be at peace among yourselves. 14 Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men. 15 See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. 16 Rejoice evermore. 17 Pray without ceasing. 18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. 19 Quench not the Spirit. 20 Despise not prophesyings. 21 Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. 22 Abstain from all appearance of evil. 23 And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it. 25 Brethren, pray for us. 26 Greet all the brethren with an holy kiss. 27 I charge you by the Lord that this epistle be read unto all the holy brethren. 28 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen. ¶     The first epistle unto the Thessalonians was written from Athens. Holy Bible 2 Thessalonians 1 2 3 THE SECOND EPISTLE OF PAUL THE APOSTLE TO THE THESSALONIANS. CHAPTER 1 PAUL, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: 2 Grace unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. 3 We are bound to thank God always for you, brethren, as it is meet, because that your faith groweth exceedingly, and the charity of every one of you all toward each other aboundeth; 4 So that we ourselves glory in you in the churches of God for your patience and faith in all your persecutions and tribulations that ye endure: 5 Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer: 6 Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; 7 And to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, 8 In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: 9 Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; 10 When he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.
Anonymous (Holy Bible: Old and New Testaments - King James Version - Full Navigation)
Discussion Questions 1. Why does legalism appeal to almost every Christian at some time? To what extent are you a “just do it” Christian? What is the cure for legalism? 2. How do people change? How have you answered that question in the past? How do you answer it now? 3. List all the motives people can have for obeying God. What are your main motives for living as a disciple? How might you move to the higher motives?
Daniel M. Doriani (The New Man: Becoming a Man After God's Heart)
My father..." Daisy began, then bit her lip. This man was her father's business partner. It was not appropriate to run to Westcliff with complaints. But the patience in his expression encouraged her to continue. "He called me a parasite," she said, keeping her voice soft to avoid disturbing Lillian. "He asked me to tell him how the world has benefitted from my existence, or what I had done for anyone." "And your reply?" Westcliff asked. "I... couldn't think of anything to say." Westcliff's coffee-colored eyes were unfathomable. He made a gesture for her to approach the settee, and she obeyed. To her astonishment, he took her hand in his and gripped it warmly. The usually circumspect earl had never done such a thing before. "Daisy," Westcliff said gently, "most lives are not distinguished by great achievements. They are measured by an infinite number of small ones. Each time you do a kindness for someone or bring a smile to his face, it gives your life meaning. Never doubt your value, little friend. The world would be a dismal place without Daisy Bowman in it.
Lisa Kleypas (Scandal in Spring (Wallflowers, #4))
Don’t you wish to marry?” At Pandora’s lack of response, she pressed impatiently, “Well?” Pandora glanced at Kathleen for guidance. “Should I say the conventional thing or the honest thing?” Lady Berwick replied before Kathleen was able. “Answer honestly, child.” “In that case,” Pandora said, “No, I don’t wish to marry, ever. I like men quite well—at least the ones I’ve been acquainted with—but I shouldn’t like to have to obey a husband and serve his needs. It wouldn’t make me at all happy to have a dozen children, and stay at home knitting while he goes out romping with his friends. I would rather be independent.” The room was silent. Lady Berwick’s expression did not change, nor did she blink even once as she stared at Pandora. It seemed as if a wordless battle were being waged between the authoritative older woman and the rebellious girl. Finally Lady Berwick said, “You must have read Tolstoy.” Pandora blinked, clearly caught off guard by the unexpected statement. “I have,” she admitted, looking mystified. “How did you know?” “No young woman wants to marry after reading Tolstoy. That is why I never allowed either of my daughters to read Russian novels.” “How are Dolly and Bettina?” Kathleen burst in, trying to change the subject by asking after the countess’s daughters. Neither Lady Berwick nor Pandora would be sidetracked. “Tolstoy isn’t the only reason I don’t wish to marry,” Pandora said. “Whatever your reasons, they are unsound. I will explain to you later why you do wish to marry. Furthermore, you are an unconventional girl, and you must learn to conceal it. There is no happiness for any individual, man or woman, who does not dwell within the broad zone of average.” Pandora regarded her with baffled interest. “Yes, ma’am.” Privately Helen suspected that the two women were looking forward to a ripping argument.
Lisa Kleypas (Marrying Winterborne (The Ravenels, #2))
Do you see the cross carved on it, and the flame inside? You did not make it. You did not light it, Better men than you, men who could believe and obey, twisted the entrails of iron and preserved the legend of fire. There is not a street you walk on, there is not a thread you wear, that was not made as this lantern was, by denying your philosophy of dirt and rats. You can make nothing. You can only destroy. You will destroy mankind; you will destroy the world. Let that suffice you. Yet this one old Christian lantern you shall not destroy. It shall go where your empire of apes will never have the wit to find it.
G.K. Chesterton (The Man Who Was Thursday: A Nightmare)
Pure mutiny flashes across her features, and I nearly order her back into a bottle right then and there. I don’t need any more problems on my hands, and, regardless of how downtrodden by fate she seems, she’s a willful woman who’s never had the right to exercise that will, a Cat-5 hurricane forming off my coast. The question isn’t whether the storm will come hammer my kingdom, but when, and how catastrophic it will be. Knowing my luck, as catastrophic as is possible. I no longer even spend much time brooding about catastrophe. I plan for it. It’s my life. She says tartly, “If I must always obey a man, and never have any choice about my life, then yes, I’d rather obey one while outside the bottle than inside it. And perhaps if I’m an obedient little pet, I’ll get a treat,” she adds, eyes flashing. I say defensively, “We don’t know each other. I don’t trust you. If the day comes that I trust you—” “You’d listen to me? Like I’m a real person and everything?” she cuts me off excitedly. “You’re going to have to figure out how to show me your true form, to have a snowball’s chance in hell of that.” She sighs forlornly. Och, Christ. This woman. She gets to me. “Impress me with how well you obey the limits I give you. I’ll endeavor to give you only the necessary ones.” My gut is screaming again. This isn’t going to go well, I just know it.
Karen Marie Moning (Kingdom of Shadow and Light (Fever, #11))