Traveling Mercies Quotes

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Not forgiving is like drinking rat poison and then waiting for the rat to die.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Traveling is all very well and good as long as you knew there is a place or person you can call home
Jodi Picoult (Mercy)
The road to enlightenment is long and difficult, and you should try not to forget snacks and magazines.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Man is born broken. He lives by mending. The grace of God is glue
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
It's funny: I always imagined when I was a kid that adults had some kind of inner toolbox full of shiny tools: the saw of discernment, the hammer of wisdom, the sandpaper of patience. But then when I grew up I found that life handed you these rusty bent old tools - friendships, prayer, conscience, honesty - and said 'do the best you can with these, they will have to do'. And mostly, against all odds, they do.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
...because when people have seen you at their worst, you don't have to put on the mask as much.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
My heart was broken and my head was just barely inhabitable
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
It turned out this man worked for the Dalai Lama. And she said gently-that they believe when a lot of things start going wrong all at once, it is to protect something big and lovely that is trying to get itself born-and that this something needs for you to be distracted so that it can be born as perfectly as possible.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
...most of the time, all you have is the moment, and the imperfect love of the people around you.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
The depth of the feeling continued to surprise and threaten me, but each time it hit again and I bore it...I would discover that it hadn't washed me away.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
...music is about as physical as it gets: your essential rhythm is your heartbeat; your essential sound, the breath. We're walking temples of noise, and when you add tender hearts to this mix, it somehow lets us meet in places we couldn't get to any other way.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
It's so awful, attacking your child. It's the worse thing I know, to shout loudly at this 50 lb. being with his huge trusting brown eyes. It's like bitch-slapping E.T.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
The thing about light is that it really isn’t yours; it’s what you gather and shine back. And it gets more power from reflectiveness; if you sit still and take it in, it fills your cup, and then you can give it off yourself.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Who was it who said that forgiveness is giving up all hope of having had a different past?
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Mine was a patchwork God, sewn together from bits of rag and ribbon, Eastern and Western, pagan and Hebrew, everything but the kitchen sink and Jesus.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Then the singing enveloped me. It was furry and resonant, coming from everyone's very heart. There was no sense of performance or judgment, only that the music was breath and food.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
It is unearned love--the love that goes before, that greets us on the way. It's the help you receive when you have no bright ideas left, when you are empty and desperate and have discovered that your best thinking and most charming charm have failed you. Grace is the light or electricity or juice or breeze that takes you from that isolated place and puts you with others who are as startled and embarrassed and eventually grateful as you are to be there.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
[Her] work taught me that you could be all the traditional feminine things -- a mother, a lover, a listener, a nurturer -- and you could also be critically astute and radical and have a minority opinion that was profoundly moral.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I smiled back at her. I thought such awful thoughts that I cannot even say them out loud because they would make Jesus want to drink gin straight out of the cat dish.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Grief, as I read somewhere once, is a lazy Susan. One day it is heavy and underwater, and the next day it spins and stops at loud and rageful, and the next day at wounded keening, and the next day numbness, silence.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
There is nothing more touching to me then a family picture where everyone is trying to look his or her best, but you can see what a mess they all really are.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I think that is why we stay close to our families, no matter how neurotic the members, how deeply annoying or dull- because when people have seen you at your worst, you don’t have to put on the mask as much.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
When you make friends with fear, it can’t rule you.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Courage is fear that has said its prayers.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Now she and I sit together in her room and eat chocolate, and I tell her that in a very long time when we both to go heaven, we should try to get chairs next to each other, close to the dessert table.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I know that sometimes these friends feel that they have been expelled from the ordinary world they lived in before and that they are now citizens of the Land of the Fucked.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
For twenty years I have ached to go back home, when there was nobody there to whom I could return.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Dear Child, Sometimes on your travel through hell, you meet people that think they are in heaven because of their cleverness and ability to get away with things. Travel past them because they don't understand who they have become and never will. These type of people feel justified in revenge and will never learn mercy or forgiveness because they live by comparison. They are the people that don't care about anyone, other than who is making them feel confident. They don’t understand that their deity is not rejoicing with them because of their actions, rather he is trying to free them from their insecurities, by softening their heart. They rather put out your light than find their own. They don't have the ability to see beyond the false sense of happiness they get from destroying others. You know what happiness is and it isn’t this. Don’t see their success as their deliverance. It is a mask of vindication which has no audience, other than their own kind. They have joined countless others that call themselves “survivors”. They believe that they are entitled to win because life didn’t go as planned for them. You are not like them. You were not meant to stay in hell and follow their belief system. You were bound for greatness. You were born to help them by leading. Rise up and be the light home. You were given the gift to see the truth. They will have an army of people that are like them and you are going to feel alone. However, your family in heaven stands beside you now. They are your strength and as countless as the stars. It is time to let go! Love, Your Guardian Angel
Shannon L. Alder
Productiveness is your acceptance of morality, your recognition of the fact that you choose to live--that productive work is the process by which man's consciousness controls his existence, a constant process of acquiring knowledge and shaping matter to fit one's purpose, of translating an idea into physical form, of remaking the earth in the image of one's values--that all work is creative work if done by a thinking mind, and no work is creative if done by a blank who repeats in uncritical stupor a routine he has learned from others--that your work is yours to choose, and the choice is as wide as your mind, that nothing more is possible to you and nothing less is human--that to cheat your way into a job bigger than your mind can handle is to become a fear-corroded ape on borrowed motions and borrowed time, and to settle down into a job that requires less than your mind's full capacity is to cut your motor and sentence yourself to another kind of motion: decay--that your work is the process of achieving your values, and to lose your ambition for values is to lose your ambition to live--that your body is a machine, but your mind is its driver, and you must drive as far as your mind will take you, with achievement as the goal of your road--that the man who has no purpose is a machine that coasts downhill at the mercy of any boulder to crash in the first chance ditch, that the man who stifles his mind is a stalled machine slowly going to rust, that the man who lets a leader prescribe his course is a wreck being towed to the scrap heap, and the man who makes another man his goal is a hitchhiker no driver should ever pick up--that your work is the purpose of your life, and you must speed past any killer who assumes the right to stop you, that any value you might find outside your work, any other loyalty or love, can be only travelers you choose to share your journey and must be travelers going on their own power in the same direction.
Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)
This is the most profound spiritual truth I know: that even when we're most sure that love can't conquer all, it seems to anyway. It goes down into the rat hole with us, in the guise of our friends, and there it swells and comforts. It gives us second winds, third winds, hundredth winds.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Without using the word, everyone started forgiving each other again. Just like that, from the no of all nothingness: you have a big tense mess and out of it comes some joy. It must be magic.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
...and then I remembered this basic religious principle that God isn't there to take away our suffering or our pain but to fill it with his or her presence...
Annie Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
...that grace is having a commitment to - or at least an acceptance of - being ineffective and foolish.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
And my fear of failure has been lifelong and deep. If you are what you do- and I think my parents may have accidentally given me this idea- and you do poorly, what then? It’s over; you’re wiped out. All those prophecies you heard in the dark have come true, and people can see the real you, see what a schmendrick you are, what a fraud.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I don’t know why life isn’t constructed to be seamless and safe, why we make such glaring mistakes, things fall so short of our expectations, and our hearts get broken and out kids do scary things and our parents get old and don’t always remember to put pants on before they go out for a stroll. I don’t know why it’s not more like it is in the movies, why things don’t come out neatly and lessons can’t be learned when you’re in the mood for learning them, why love and grace often come in such motley packaging.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Here are the two best prayers I know: "Help me help me, help me," and "Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Then he snarled at her. “You are not leaving me.” It was an order, and she didn’t have to follow anyone’s orders. That was part of being Omega instead of a regular werewolf – who might have had a snowball’s chance in hell of being a proper mate. “You need someone stronger,” Anna told him again. “So you wouldn’t have to hide when you’re hurt. So you could trust your mate to take care of herself and help, damn it, instead of having to protect me from whatever you are hiding.” She hated crying. Tears were weaknesses that could be exploited and they never solved a damned thing. Sobs gathered in her chest like a rushing tide and she needed to get away from him before she broke. Instead of fighting his grip, she tried to slide out of it. “I need to go,” she said to his chest. “I need–” His mouth closed over hers, hot and hungry, warming her mouth as his body warmed her body. “Me,” Charles said, his voice dark and gravelly as if it had traveled up from the bottom of the earth, his eyes a bright gold. “You need me.
Patricia Briggs (Fair Game (Alpha & Omega, #3; Mercy Thompson World - Complete #9))
The clipping said forgiveness meant that God is for giving, and that we are here for giving too, and that to withold love or blessings is to be completely delusional.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
These are pictures of the people in my family where we look like the most awkward and desperate folk you ever saw, poster children for the human condition.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I'll live as well, as deeply, as madly as I can--until I die.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Maybe it is because music is about as physical as it gets: your essential rhythm is your heartbeat; your essential sound, the breath. We’re walking temples of noise, and when you add the tender hearts to this mix, it somehow lets us meet in places we couldn’t get to any other way.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I do not at all understand the mystery of grace—only that it meets us where we are but does not leave us where it found us.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Can you imagine the hopelessness of trying to live a spiritual life when you’re secretly looking up at the skies not for illumination or direction, but to gauge, miserably, the odds of rain?
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
There is something so tender about this to me, about being willing to have your makeup wash off, your eyes tear up, your nose start to run. Its tender partly because it harkens back to infancy, to your mother washing your face with love and lots or water, tending to you, making you clean all over again.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
They always threw their arms around and hugged me while crying our Yiddish endearments. Yet none of them believed in God. They believed in social justice, good works, Israel, and Bette Midler. I was nearly thirty before I met a religious Jew.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Dreadlocks make people wonder if you’re trying to be rebellious.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I know nothing, except what everyone knows--if there when grace dances, I should dance.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
We were raised to believe in books, music, and nature.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Grief ends up giving you the two best things: softness and illumination.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I kept asking God for help, and after a while I realized something -- that Josh was not enjoying this either. He was just trying to take care of himself, and I made the radical decision to let him off the hook.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Life does not seem to present itself to me for my convenience, to box itself up nicely so I can write about it with wisdom and a point to make before putting it on a shelf somewhere.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I sat down in the sand, breathless with shame and failure. God, I thought, some defender of the weak. Some freedom fighter: Joan of Arc in sunscreen.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
The truth is that your spirits don't rise until you get way down.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I understood that the man I was calling for could never ever come back. Because I understood that the man that I was calling for was dead.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Maybe, I thought, after a few months of sobriety, you could successfully smoke marijuana again, or maybe every anniversary you got to have one glass of a perfectly chilled California Chardonnay.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
It took me one more year to admit that I could no longer control my drinking. And finally on July 7, 1986, I quit, and let a bunch of sober alcoholics teach me how to get sober, and stay sober. God, they were such a pain in the ass.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Father Bertrand stood at the window, gazing out through the sea oats at the wild ocean in the distance. There was such peace in something as big and powerful, as independent and majestic as the ocean. U-boats could travel through it and do their dirty work, but they, too, were at the mercy of the hapless wrath of such a body should God decide it was time to speak directly. Some people felt there were still enemy patrols out there, and maybe there were. But there was also Coast Guard, Navy Patrol, and our own variety of covert water travel, he thought. There was no sense in wondering why man had a persistent desire for dominance. It was clear that man would carry on until at that final call, when God would say, “Enough!” And no more.
Cece Whittaker (Glorious Christmas (The Serve #7))
Don’t get me wrong: grief sucks; it really does. Unfortunately, though, avoiding it robs us of life, of the now, of a sense of living spirit.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
But when someone enters that valley with you, that mud, it somehow saves you again.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Be kind to all the people you meet on your journey.
Lailah Gifty Akita (Think Great: Be Great! (Beautiful Quotes, #1))
to cheat your way into a job bigger than your mind can handle is to become a fear-corroded ape on borrowed motions and borrowed time, and to settle down into a job that requires less than your mind’s full capacity is to cut your motor and sentence yourself to another kind of motion: decay - that your work is the process of achieving your values, and to lose your ambition for values is to lose your ambition to live - that your body is a machine, but your mind is its driver, and you must drive as far as your mind will take you, with achievement as the goal of your road - that the man who has no purpose is a machine that coasts downhill at the mercy of any boulder to crash in the first chance ditch, that the man who stifles his mind is a stalled machine slowly going to rust, that the man who lets a leader prescribe his course is a wreck being towed to the scrap heap, and the man who makes another man his goal is a hitchhiker no driver should ever pick up - that your work is the purpose of your life, and you must speed past any killer who assumes the right to stop you, that any value you might find outside your work, any other loyalty or love, can be only travelers you choose to share your journey and must be travelers going on their own power in the same direction.
Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)
I was frozen like in a dream when your feet weigh fifty pounds each and the danger is almost upon you.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
If courage is not there, if the possibility of things getting better is not there, listen a little harder.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
There is cracks, cracks, in everything, that's how the light gets in.' I had cracks but not the hope.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
we all wanted this because let's face it, it's so inspiring and such a relief when people find a way to bear the unbearable, when you can organize things in such a way that a tiny miracle appears to have taken place and that love has once again turn out to be bigger than fear and death and blindness.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
when a lot of things start going wrong all at once, it is to protect something big and lovely that is trying to get itself born—and that this something needs for you to be distracted so that it can be born as perfectly as possible.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
San Quentin’s is the safest beach in the world. We’re not talking about lifeguards here who might yell at someone who’s being rude-we’re talking about armed guards, in watchtowers, two blocks away.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
The way I see things, God loves you the same whether you're being elegant or not. It feels much better when you are, but even when you can't fake it, God still listens to your prayers. Again and again I tell God I need help, and God says, 'Well isn't that fabulous? Because I need help too. So you go get that old woman over there some water, and I'll figure out what we're going to do about your stuff.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Show me the manner in which a nation cares for its dead and I will measure with mathematical exactness the tender mercies of its people, their respect for the laws of the land and their loyalty to high ideals.
Caitlin Doughty (From Here to Eternity: Traveling the World to Find the Good Death)
All these years I fell for the great palace lie that grief should be gotten over as quickly as possible and as privately. But what I've discovered since is that lifelong fear of grief keeps us in a barren, isolated place and that only grieving can heal grief; the passage of time will lessen the acuteness, but time alone, without the direct experience of grief, will not heal it.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I was raised by my parents to believe that you had a moral obligation to try and save the world. You sent money to the Red Cross, you registered people to vote, you marched in rallies, stood in vigils, picked up litter.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I do not at all understand the mystery of grace--only that it meets us where we are but does not leave us where it found us. I can be received gladly or grudgingly, in big gulps or in tiny tastes, like a deer at the salt.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I do believe that God is with us even when we're at our craziest and that this goodness guides, provides, and protects.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I knew to put on my favorite earrings. Sometimes you start with the outside and you get it right. You tend to your spirit through the body.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
by the great Persian mystical poet Rumi: “Where there is ruin, there is hope for a treasure.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I decided to go to the beach at San Quentin, and practice living as if today was one of the precious few left to me. What a concept.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
It was never meant to be permanent. You must have known the tide would come back in.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Help for the sick and hungry, home for the homeless folk, peace in the world forever, this is my prayer, O Lord. Amen.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Forgiveness, I know now, is maturity. Mercy is maturity. It's slow release, like certain medicines. It's incremental, like traveling along the spiral chambers of a nautilus.
Anne Lamott (Dusk, Night, Dawn: On Revival and Courage)
No one is strong enough to travel the entire path of salvation unaided. All have sinned, all need the Lord’s mercy, the love of the Crucified One (cf. Rom 3:23-24).
Benedict XVI (Jesus of Nazareth, Part Two: Holy Week: From the Entrance into Jerusalem to the Resurrection)
Now. Maybe you think it is arrogant or self centered, or ridiculous for me to believe that God bothered to wiggle a cheap bolt out of my new used car because he or she needed to keep me away for a few days until just the moment when my old friend most needed me to help her mother move into whatever comes next. Maybe nothing conscious helped to stall me so that I would be there when I could be most useful. Or maybe it did. I’ll never know for sure. And anyway, it doesn’t really matter.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
These lines of D.H. Lawrence are taped to the wall of my office: "What is the knocking? What is the knocking at the door in the night? It is somebody wants to do us harm. No, no, it is the three strange angels. Admit them, admit them." I under[stand] that failure is surely one of these strange angels.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
-NONREADING- Bookstores don't provide a remote control for Proust, you can't switch to a soccer match, or a quiz show, win a Cadillac. We live longer but less precisely and in shorter sentences. We travel faster, farther, more often, but bring back slides instead of memories. Here I am with some guy. There I guess that's my ex. Here everyone's naked so this must be a beach. Seven volumes—mercy. Couldn't it be cut or summarized, or better yet put into pictures. There was that series called "The Doll," but my sister-in-law says that's some other P.* And by the way, who was he anyway. They say he wrote in bed for years on end. Page after page at a snail's pace. But we're still going in fifth gear and, knock on wood, never better.
Wisława Szymborska
And I guess when you take away the resentment and disappointment, it's that simple. It is what we do in families: we help, because we were helped.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
...sometimes when you need to feel the all-embracing nature of God, paradoxically you need to hang out in the ordinariness, in daily ritual and comfort.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I watched him carefully. He was making art because he has to, and because he's brave enough to try and make contact, right there on the edge of madness, where he dreams.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
only grieving can heal grief; the passage of time will lessen the acuteness, but time alone, without the direct experience of grief, will not heal it.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
My brain instantly traveled back to my parents’ dining room table. I’d sat there every morning with my brain-storming notebook—my father’s idea—and I would do my homework or write song lyrics or journal on something I’d seen on the news. That was back when I’d been sure I was going to change the world.
Maggie Stiefvater (Linger (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #2))
I felt changed and a little crazy. But though I was still like a stained and slightly buckled jigsaw puzzle with some pieces missing, now there were at least a few border pieces in place.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
This is where I liked to be when I was hangover or coming down off a cocaine binge, here in the dust with all these dusty people, all this liveliness and clutter and color, things for sale to cheer me up, and greasy food that would slip down by throat.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
….but at the same time, they got a miracle. It wasn’t the kind that comes on a Macy’s Thanksgiving Day float. And it wasn’t the one that they wanted, where God would reach down from the sky and touch their girl with a magic wand and restore her to perfect health. Maybe that will still happen-who knows? I wouldn’t put anything past God, because he or she is one crafty mother. Still, they did get a miracle, one of those dusty little red-wagon miracles, and they understand this.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
And we've read scary books and watched scary movies and TV shows together. He's met monsters, ghouls, and demons on the page and on the screen. There's nothing like watching Anaconda with your best friend or lying in bed next to your mother reading Roald Dahl, because that way you get to explore dark stuff safely. You get to laugh with it, to step out on the vampire's dance floor and take him for a spin, and then step back into your life. When you make friends with fear, it can't rule you.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I went around saying for a long time that I am not one of those Christians who is heavily into forgiveness -- that I am one of the other kind. But even though it was funny, and actually true, it started to be too painful to stay this way. They say we are not punished for the sin but by the sin, and I began to feel punished by my unwillingness to forgive.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
And my father, who never once in his life would have used the word 'nigger,' would smile and give an almost imperceptible laugh -- not a trace of rage on behalf of black people, not a trace of rage on behalf of me.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
At five that night, I went back to the market and bought three sixteen-ounce Rainier Ales. I bounced back to my house, Mary Lou Retton-like, sipped the first ale, took the Valium, smoked a joint, drank the second ale, took another Valium, listened to “Into the Mystic” ten times, drank the third Ale, too the Valium and the Halcion, and discovered two unhappy thoughts. One was it was only seven o’clock. The second was that I was wide awake.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I'm pretty sure that it is only by experiencing that ocean of sadness in a naked and immediate way that we come to be healed--which is to say, that we come to experience life with a real sense of presence and spaciousness and peace.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
He grasped the knob. It was engraved with a wild rose wound around a revolver, one of those great old guns from his father and now lost forever. Yet it will be yours again, whispered the voice of the Tower and the voice of the roses—these voices were now one. What do you mean ? To this there was no answer, but the knob turned beneath his hand, and perhaps that was an answer. Roland opened the door at the top of the Dark Tower. He saw and understood at once, the knowledge falling upon him in a hammerblow, hot as the sun of the desert that was the apotheosis of all deserts. How many times had he climbed these stairs only to find himself peeled back, curved back, turned back? Not to the beginning (when things might have been changed and time's curse lifted), but to that moment in the Mohaine Desert when he had finally understood that his thoughtless, questionless quest would ultimately succeed? How many times had he traveled a loop like the one in the clip that had once pinched off his navel, his own tet-ka can Gan? How many times would he travel it? "Oh, no!" he screamed. "Please, not again! Have pity! Have mercy!" The hands pulled him forward regardless. The hands of the Tower knew no mercy. They were the hands of Gan, the hands of ka, and they knew no mercy.
Stephen King
Every Sunday I nudge Sam in her direction, and he walks to where she is sitting and hugs her. She smells him behind the ears, where he most smells like sweet unwashed new potatoes. This is in fact what I think God may smell like, a young child's slightly dirty neck.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Eventually, mercifully, the waitress prised the spoons out of our hands and took the dessert stuff away, and we were able to stumble zombielike out into the night.
Bill Bryson (The Lost Continent: Travels in Small Town America)
I started to cry then, and I cried for a long time without making much noise. I cried and cried like a little kid.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
they got to be so conceited because they were Catholics.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Juniper began a death prayer. It was a familiar invocation, asking the sea to bring the peace of deepest sleep, and the wind to whisper the girl's name in its travels.
April Genevieve Tucholke (The Boneless Mercies)
Late Fragment And did you get what you wanted from this life even so? I did. And what did you want? To call myself beloved, to feel myself beloved on the earth. RAYMOND CARVER
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Mind you, I cannot swear that my story is true. It may have been a dream; or worse, a symptom of some severe mental disorder. But I believe it is true. After all, how are we to know what things there are on earth? Strange monstrosities still exist, and foul, incredible perversions. Every war, each new geographical or scientific discovery, brings to light some new bit of ghastly evidence that the world is not altogether the same place we fondly imagine it to be. Sometimes peculiar incidents occur which hint of utter madness. How can we be sure that our smug conceptions of reality actually exist? To one man in a million dreadful knowledge is revealed, and the rest of us remain mercifully ignorant. There have been travelers who never came back, and research workers who disappeared. Some of those who did return were deemed mad because of what they told, and others sensibly concealed the wisdom that had so horribly been revealed. Blind as we are, we know a little of what lurks beneath our normal life. There have been tales of sea serpents and creatures of the deep; legends of dwarfs and giants; records of queer medical horrors and unnatural births. Stunted nightmares of men's personalities have blossomed into being under the awful stimulus of war, or pestilence, or famine. There have been cannibals, necrophiles, and ghouls; loathsome rites of worship and sacrifice; maniacal murders, and blasphemous crimes. When I think, then, of what I saw and heard, and compare it with certain other grotesque and unbelievable authenticities, I begin to fear for my reason. ("The Mannikin")
Robert Bloch (Monster Mix)
It made no sense that Abraham could head for the mountain in Moriah still believing in God's goodness. It made no sense that even as he walked his son to the sacrificial altar, he still believed God's promise that Isaac would give him many descendants. It made no sense that he was willing to do the one thing in the world he could not do, just because God told him to. God told him to obey and to believe that he as a loving god and could be trusted. So Abraham did obey.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Our preacher Veronica said recently that this is life's nature: that lives and hearts get broken -- those of people we love, those of people we'll never meet. She said that the world sometimes feels like the waiting room of the emergency ward and that and that we who are more or less OK for now need to take the tenderest possible care of the more wounded people in the waiting room, until the healer comes. You sit with people, she said, you bring them juice and graham crackers.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Some lives are thus blessed: it is God's will: it is the attesting trace and lingering evidence of Eden. Other lives run from the first another course. Other travelers encounter weather fitful and gusty , wild and variable - breast adverse winds, are belated and overtaken by the early closing winter night. Neither can this happen without the sanction of God; and I know that amidst His boundless works, is somewhere stored the secret of this last fate's justice: I know that His treasures contain the proof as the promise of its mercy.
Charlotte Brontë
The French know the intrinsic value of holding on to the past, its pleasures, its promises, and its tender mercies.
Peggy Kopman-Owens (The Promise: Yposchesi (The Apricot Tree House Mystery #1))
Langston Hughes: Gather out of star-dust Earth-dust, Cloud-dust, Storm-dust, And splinters of hail, One handful of dream-dust Not for sale.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Except for the point, the still point, There would be no dance, and there is only the dance. T. S. ELIOT
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I tell you, families are definitely the training ground for forgiveness.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
His art springs out of bubbling underground necessity, as if he's somehow dipping himself into the river that gave him life; he's making dream material visible.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
whatever you use to keep the pain at bay robs you of the flecks and nuggets of gold that feeling grief will give you.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Picasso said, “Everything is a miracle; it’s a miracle that one does not dissolve in one’s bath like a lump of sugar
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Miles Davis saying, “Don’t play what’s there, play what’s not there.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
It all made me think of Eugene O’Neill’s line, “Man is born broken. He lives by mending. The grace of God is glue.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I have actually come to believe that a person being herself is beautiful - that contentment and acceptance and freedom are beautiful.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I do not think the sunny youth of either will prove the forerunner of stormy age. I think it is deemed good that you two should live in peace and be happy - not as angels but as few are happy amongst mortals. Some lives are thus blessed: it is God's will: it is the attesting trace and lingering evidence of Eden. Other lives run from the first another course. Other travellers encounter weather fitful and gusty wild and variable - breast adverse winds are belated and overtaken by the early closing winter night. Neither can this happen without the sanction of God and I know that amidst His boundless works is somewhere stored the secret of this last fate's justice: I know that His treasures contain the proof as the promise of its mercy.
Charlotte Brontë (Villette)
Anne Lamott says in Traveling Mercies, “I always imagined when I was a kid that adults had some kind of inner toolbox full of shiny tools: the saw of discernment, the hammer of wisdom, the sandpaper of patience. But then when I grew up I found that life handed you these rusty bent old tools—friendships, prayer, conscience, honesty—and said, Do the best you can with these, they will have to do. And mostly, against all odds, they’re enough.
Melanie Shankle (Sparkly Green Earrings)
One of the most beautifully disturbing questions we can ask, is whether a given story we tell about our lives is actually true, and whether the opinions we go over every day have any foundation or are things we repeat to ourselves simply so that we will continue to play the game. It can be quite disorienting to find that a story we have relied on is not only not true - it actually never was true. Not now not ever. There is another form of obsolescence that can fray at the cocoon we have spun about ourselves, that is, the story was true at one time, and for an extended period; the story was even true and good to us, but now it is no longer true and no longer of any benefit, in fact our continued retelling of it simply imprisons us. We are used to the prison however, we have indeed fitted cushions and armchairs and made it comfortable and we have locked the door from the inside. The imprisoning story I identified by the time the entree was served was one I had told myself for a long time. “In order to write I need peace and quiet and an undisturbed place far from others or the possibility of being disturbed. I knew however, that if I wanted to enter the next creative stage, something had to change; I simply did not have enough free space between traveling, speaking and being a good father and husband to write what I wanted to write. The key in the lock turned surprisingly easy, I simply said to myself, “What if I acted as if it wasn’t true any more, what if it had been true at one time, but now at this stage in the apprenticeship I didn’t need that kind of insulation anymore, what if I could write anywhere and at any time?” One of the interesting mercies of this kind of questioning is that it is hard to lose by asking: if the story is still true, we will soon find out and can go back to telling it. If it is not we have turned the key, worked the hinges and walked out into the clear air again with a simple swing of the door.
David Whyte
florens would sigh then, her head on lina's shoulder and when sleep came the little girl's smiel lingered. mother hunger – to be one or have one – both of them were reeling from that longing which, lina knes, remained alive, traveling to the bone.
Toni Morrison (A Mercy)
We are happy to observe an increasing frequency of these pedestrian tours: to walk, is, beyond all comparison, the most independent and advantageous mode of travelling; Smelfungus and Mundungus may pursue their journey as they please; but it grieves one to see a man of taste at the mercy of a postilion.' For the 'man of taste' to be actively recommended the pedestrian alternative indeed shows that a decisive reversal of educated attitudes has taken place, and within a relatively narrow span of years.
Robin Jarvis (Romantic Writing and Pedestrian Travel)
We kept on cooking and walking the dog, taking the kids to the park, cleaning the kitchen, and letting Sara and Adam hate what was going on when they needed to. Sometimes we let them resist finding any meaning or solace in anything that had to do with their daughter's diagnosis, and this was one of the hardest things to do -- to stop trying to make things come out better than they were. We let them spew when they needed to; we offered the gift of no comfort when there being no comfort was where they had landed. Then we shopped for groceries.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Rav Hisda nodded. “Despite the dangers, people continue to travel, often for long distances. This is what you would inscribe on an amulet for your brother to protect him on a journey. “May it be Your will, Adonai Savaot, that You conduct Tachlifa bar Haviva in peace, direct his footsteps in peace, and uphold him in peace. Deliver him from the hand of every foe and ambush along the way. Send blessing on his handiwork and grant him grace, loving-kindness, and mercy in Your eyes and in the eyes of all who behold Tachlifa bar Haviva. Blessed are You, Adonai, who harkens unto prayer. Amen. Amen. Selah.
Maggie Anton (Apprentice)
By removing the ability to drive themselves anywhere, women were at the mercy of male authority, compelled always to inform men of their destinations and returns, and in a country where women could not travel without prior authorization by men, they were effectively hostage to their male relatives. Rania
Qanta A. Ahmed (In the Land of Invisible Women: A Female Doctor's Journey in the Saudi Kingdom)
The review in the newspaper the next day was not very good. But by then I'd figured out the gift of failure, which is that it breaks through all that held breath and isometric tension about needing to look good: it's the gift of feeling floppier. One of the things I'd been most afraid of had finally happened, with a whole lot of people watching, and it had indeed been a nightmare. But sitting with all that vulnerability, I discovered I could ride it...Out of nowhere, I remembered something one of my priest friends had said once, that grace is having a commitment to - or at least an acceptance of - being ineffective and foolish. That our bottled charm is the main roadblock to drinking that clear, cool glass of love. I remembered what Grace's stories were all about: self-forgiveness, and taking care of one another. It wasn't far away from Jesus saying to feed his sheep. Now, I'm not positive he meant room service. But maybe he did. So I ate strawberries and melon and cookies, then put on the heat, and got in the tub.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
All invitations must proceed from heaven perhaps; perhaps it is futile for men to initiate their own unity, they do but widen the gulfs between them by the attempt. So at all events thought old Mr. Graysford and young Mr. Sorley, the devoted missionaries who lived out beyond the slaughterhouses, always travelled third on the railways, and never came to the club. In our Father's house are many mansions, they taught, and there alone will the incompatible multitudes of mankind be welcomed and soothed. Not one shall be turned away by the servants on that verandah, be he black or white, not one shall be kept standing who approaches with a loving heart. And why should the divine hospitality cease here? Consider, with all reverence, the monkeys. May there not be a mansion for the monkeys also? Old Mr. Graysford said No, but young Mr. Sorley, who was advanced, said Yes; he saw no reason why monkeys should not have their collateral share of bliss, and he had sympathetic discussions about them with his Hindu friends. And the jackals? Jackals were indeed less to Mr. Sorley's mind but he admitted that the mercy of God, being infinite, may well embrace all mammals. And the wasps? He became uneasy during the descent to wasps, and was apt to change the conversation. And oranges, cactuses, crystals and mud? and the bacteria inside Mr. Sorley? No, no, this is going too far. We must exclude someone from our gathering, or we shall be left with nothing.
E.M. Forster (A Passage to India)
They would tell you that governments could not manage things as economically as private individuals; they would repeat and repeat that, and think they were saying something! They could not see that “economical” management by masters meant simply that they, the people, were worked harder and ground closer and paid less! They were wage-earners and servants, at the mercy of exploiters whose one thought was to get as much out of them as possible; and they were taking an interest in the process, were anxious lest it should not be done thoroughly enough! Was it not honestly a trial to listen to an argument such as that? And yet there were things even worse. You would begin talking to some poor devil who had worked in one shop for the last thirty years, and had never been able to save a penny; who left home every morning at six o’clock, to go and tend a machine, and come back at night too tired to take his clothes off; who had never had a week’s vacation in his life, had never traveled, never had an adventure, never learned anything, never hoped anything—and when you started to tell him about Socialism he would sniff and say, “I’m not interested in that—I’m an individualist!” And then he would go on to tell you that Socialism was “paternalism,” and that if it ever had its way the world would stop progressing. It was enough to make a mule laugh, to hear arguments like that; and yet it was no laughing matter, as you found out—for how many millions of such poor deluded wretches there were, whose lives had been so stunted by capitalism that they no longer knew what freedom was! And they really thought that it was “individualism” for tens of thousands of them to herd together and obey the orders of a steel magnate, and produce hundreds of millions of dollars of wealth for him, and then let him give them libraries; while for them to take the industry, and run it to suit themselves, and build their own libraries—that would have been “Paternalism”!
Upton Sinclair (The Jungle)
She could smell the wrongness in the air and it made her wolf nervous. It felt like something was watching them, as if the wrongness had an intelligence— and it didn't help to remember that at least one of the people they were hunting could hide from their senses. Anna fought the urge to turn around, to take Charles's hand or slide under his arm and let his presence drive away the wrongness. Once, she would have, but now she had the uneasy feeling that he might back away as he almost had when she sat on his lap in the boat, before Brother Wolf had taken over. Maybe he was just tired of her. She had been telling everyone that there was something wrong with him...but Bran knew his son and thought the problem was her. Bran was smart and perceptive; she ought to have considered that he was right. Charles was old. He'd seen and experienced so much—next to him she was just a child. His wolf had chosen her without consulting Charles at all. Maybe he'd have preferred someone who knew more. Someone beautiful and clever who... "Anna?" said Charles. "What's wrong? Are you crying?" He moved in front of her and stopped, forcing her to stop walking, too. She opened her mouth and his fingers touched her wet cheeks. "Anna," he said, his body going still. "Call on your wolf." "You should have someone stronger," she told him miserably. "Someone who could help you when you need it, instead of getting sent home because I can't endure what you have to do. If I weren't Omega, if I were dominant like Sage, I could have helped you." "There is no one stronger," Charles told her. "It's the taint from the black magic. Call your wolf." "You don't want me anymore," she whispered. And once the words were out she knew they were true. He would say the things that he thought she wanted to hear because he was a kind man. But they would be lies. The truth was in the way he closed down the bond between them so she wouldn't hear things that would hurt her. Charles was a dominant wolf and dominant wolves were driven to protect those weaker than themselves. And he saw her as so much weaker. "I love you," he told her. "Now, call your wolf." She ignored his order—he knew better than to give her orders. He said he loved her; it sounded like the truth. But he was old and clever and Anna knew that, when push came to shove, he could lie and make anyone believe it. Knew it because he lied to her now—and it sounded like the truth. "I'm sorry," she told him. "I'll go away—" And suddenly her back was against a tree and his face was a hairsbreadth from hers. His long hot body was pressed against her from her knees to her chest—he'd have to bend to do that. He was a lot taller than her, though she wasn't short. Anna shuddered as the warmth of his body started to penetrate the cold that had swallowed hers. Charles waited like a hunter, waited for her to wiggle and see that she was truly trapped. Waited while she caught her breathe. Waited until she looked into his eyes. Then he snarled at her. "You are not leaving me." It was an order, and she didn't have to follow anyone's orders. That was part of being Omega instead of a regular werewolf—who might have had a snowball's chance in hell of being a proper mate. "You need someone stronger," Anna told him again. "So you wouldn't have to hide when you're hurt. So you could trust your mate to take care of herself and help, damn it, instead of having to protect me from whatever you are hiding." She hated crying. Tears were weaknesses that could be exploited and they never solves a damn thing. Sobs gathered in her chest like a rushing tide and she needed to get away from him before she broke. Instead of fighting his grip, she tried to slide out of it. "I need to go," she said to his chest. "I need—" His mouth closed over hers, hot and hungry, warming her mouth as his body warmed her body. "Me," Charles said, his voice dark and gravelly as if it had traveled up from the bottom of the earth,...
Patricia Briggs (Fair Game (Alpha & Omega, #3; Mercy Thompson World - Complete #9))
It’s funny: I always imagined when I was a kid that adults had some kind of inner toolbox, full of shiny tools: the saw of discernment, the hammer of wisdom, the sandpaper of patience. But then when I grew up I found that life handed you these rusty bent old tools—friendships, prayer, conscience, honesty—and said, Do the best you can with these, they will have to do. And mostly, against all odds, they’re enough.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
The Mercy The ship that took my mother to Ellis Island eighty-three years ago was named "The Mercy." She remembers trying to eat a banana without first peeling it and seeing her first orange in the hands of a young Scot, a seaman who gave her a bite and wiped her mouth for her with a red bandana and taught her the word, "orange," saying it patiently over and over. A long autumn voyage, the days darkening with the black waters calming as night came on, then nothing as far as her eyes could see and space without limit rushing off to the corners of creation. She prayed in Russian and Yiddish to find her family in New York, prayers unheard or misunderstood or perhaps ignored by all the powers that swept the waves of darkness before she woke, that kept "The Mercy" afloat while smallpox raged among the passengers and crew until the dead were buried at sea with strange prayers in a tongue she could not fathom. "The Mercy," I read on the yellowing pages of a book I located in a windowless room of the library on 42nd Street, sat thirty-one days offshore in quarantine before the passengers disembarked. There a story ends. Other ships arrived, "Tancred" out of Glasgow, "The Neptune" registered as Danish, "Umberto IV," the list goes on for pages, November gives way to winter, the sea pounds this alien shore. Italian miners from Piemonte dig under towns in western Pennsylvania only to rediscover the same nightmare they left at home. A nine-year-old girl travels all night by train with one suitcase and an orange. She learns that mercy is something you can eat again and again while the juice spills over your chin, you can wipe it away with the back of your hands and you can never get enough.
Philip Levine (The Mercy)
SHORE AND GROUND Keep walking, though there’s no place to get to. Don’t try to see through the distances. That’s not for human beings. Move within, but don’t move the way fear makes you move. Today, like every other day, we wake up empty and frightened. Don’t open the door to the study and begin reading. Take down a musical instrument. Let the beauty we love be what we do. There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground. RUMI
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
You know you are somewhat impulsive, but you have learned to control yourself. The thing that most exasperates you is to find yourself at the mercy of the fortuitous, the aleatory, the random, in things and in human actions - carelessness, approximation, imprecision, whether your own or others'. In such instances your dominant passion is the impatience to erase the disturbing effects of that arbitrariness or distraction, to re-establish the normal course of events.
Italo Calvino (If on a Winter's Night a Traveler)
As poorly transmissible as it was, however, SARS exposed the absence of “surge capacity” in the hospitals and health-care systems of the prosperous and well-resourced countries it affected. The events of 2003 thereby raised the specter of what might have happened had SARS been pandemic influenza, and if it had traveled to resource-poor nations at the outset instead of mercifully visiting cities with well-equipped and well-staffed modern hospitals and public health-care systems.
Frank M. Snowden III (Epidemics and Society: From the Black Death to the Present)
As I’ve said before, I believe that when all is said and done, all you can do is to show up for someone in crisis, which seems so inadequate. But then when you do, it can radically change everything. Your there-ness, your stepping into a scared parent’s line of vision, can be life giving, because often everyone else is in hiding—especially, in the beginning, the parents. So you come to keep them company when it feels like the whole world is falling apart, and your being there says that just for this moment, this one tiny piece of the world is OK, or is at least better.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I wish I had an answer, but I fear I do not.” Her gaze traveled out to the field, her gaze unfocused at the horizon. “I do not know why we lost everything. I do not know why the Lord removed us from all we knew.” She turned back to look him in the eye. “But I do know that it is best not to dwell on the past. When I focus on what I have lost, I stay sad and in darkness. But when I focus on the tender mercies we have endured during this time, my heart is full and joyful. I would rather be joyful than in despair. So, although I do not have answers, I choose the path that leads to happiness.
L.A. Pattillo (The Faith of a Wife (Women of Faith #1))
When once to a man the human face is the human face divine, and the hand of his neighbour is the hand of a brother, then will he understand what St Paul meant when he said, "I could wish that myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren." But he will no longer understand those who, so far from feeling the love of their neighbour an essential of their being, expect to be set free from its law in the world to come. There, at least, for the glory of God, they may limit its expansive tendencies to the narrow circle of their heaven. On its battlements of safety, they will regard hell from afar, and say to each other, "Hark! Listen to their moans. But do not weep, for they are our neighbours no more." St Paul would be wretched before the throne of God, if he thought there was one man beyond the pale of his mercy, and that as much for God's glory as for the man's sake. And what shall we say of the man Christ Jesus? Who, that loves his brother, would not, upheld by the love of Christ, and with a dim hope that in the far-off time there might be some help for him, arise from the company of the blessed, and walk down into the dismal regions of despair, to sit with the last, the only unredeemed, the Judas of his race, and be himself more blessed in the pains of hell, than in the glories of heaven? Who, in the midst of the golden harps and the white wings, knowing that one of his kind, one miserable brother in the old-world-time when men were taught to love their neighbour as themselves, was howling unheeded far below in the vaults of the creation, who, I say, would not feel that he must arise, that he had no choice, that, awful as it was, he must gird his loins, and go down into the smoke and the darkness and the fire, travelling the weary and fearful road into the far country to find his brother?—who, I mean, that had the mind of Christ, that had the love of the Father?
George MacDonald (Unspoken Sermons, Series I., II., and III.)
I stared at the little white agates in my hand, delicate as moon drops. The mystery of God's love as I understand it is that God loves the man who was being mean to his dog just as much as he loves babies; God loves Susan Smith, who drowned her two sons, as much as he loves Desmond Tutu. And he loved her just as much when she was releasing the handbrake of her car that sent her boys into the river as he did when she first nursed them. So of course, he loves old ordinary me, even or especially at my most scared and petty and mean and obsessive. Loves me; chooses me. Remembering this helped, but here is what in fact saved me: Sam came over to see what I held in my palm, glared contemptuously at my small white pebbles, and then without missing a beat slapped the bottom of my hand so that the agates scattered. He ran off down the beach, laughing with glee. It surprised me so, this small meanness, that it made me catch my breath. Boy, I thought, is he going to be hard to place. When I was young I would have felt, What’s the point of trying to be good if the people who aren’t even trying get to be equally loved? Now I just picked up my pace and tried to catch up with that rotten Sam, because I don’t know much of anything for sure. Only that I am loved – as is
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
For my own Part, when I am employed in serving others, I do not look upon myself as conferring Favours, but as paying Debts. In my Travels, and since my Settlement, I have received much Kindness from Men, to whom I shall never have any Opportunity of making the least direct Return. And numberless Mercies from God, who is infinitely above being benefited by our Services. Those Kindnesses from Men, I can therefore only Return on their Fellow Men; and I can only shew my Gratitude for these mercies from God, by a readiness to help his other Children and my Brethren. For I do not think that Thanks and Compliments, tho’ repeated weekly, can discharge our real Obligations to each other, and much less those to our Creator.
Benjamin Franklin
countries under the unyielding rule of Berlin and the discipline of the SS and the Gestapo. It was Churchill in particular who opposed all compromise, who talked to his fellow cabinet members for days on end and finally won over Chamberlain, who, after 1938, was also convinced of Hitler’s evil intentions. ‘Hitler’s terms, if accepted, would put us completely at his mercy,’ Churchill believed. And: ‘Nations which went down fighting rose again, but those which surrendered tamely were finished.’ In May 1940 it would have been blindly optimistic to think that Great Britain could defeat the Germans without massive support from the Soviet Union and the United States. But the British were persuaded that Germany would once again encounter difficulties due to
Geert Mak (In Europe: Travels Through the Twentieth Century)
Everything, it said, was against the travellers, every obstacle imposed alike by man and by nature. A miraculous agreement of the times of departure and arrival, which was impossible, was absolutely necessary to his success. He might, perhaps, reckon on the arrival of trains at the designated hours, in Europe, where the distances were relatively moderate; but when he calculated upon crossing India in three days, and the United States in seven, could he rely beyond misgiving upon accomplishing his task? There were accidents to machinery, the liability of trains to run off the line, collisions, bad weather, the blocking up by snow—were not all these against Phileas Fogg? Would he not find himself, when travelling by steamer in winter, at the mercy of the winds and fogs?
Jules Verne (Around the World in 80 Days)
Productiveness is your acceptance of morality, your recognition of the fact that you choose to live—that productive work is the process by which man’s consciousness controls his existence, a constant process of acquiring knowledge and shaping matter to fit one’s purpose, of translating an idea into physical form, of remaking the earth in the image of one’s values—that all work is creative work if done by a thinking mind, and no work is creative if done by a blank who repeats in uncritical stupor a routine he has learned from others—that your work is yours to choose, and the choice is as wide as your mind, that nothing more is possible to you and nothing less is human—that to cheat your way into a job bigger than your mind can handle is to become a fear-corroded ape on borrowed motions and borrowed time, and to settle down into a job that requires less than your mind’s full capacity is to cut your motor and sentence yourself to another kind of motion: decay—that your work is the process of achieving your values, and to lose your ambition for values is to lose your ambition to live—that your body is a machine, but your mind is its driver, and you must drive as far as your mind will take you, with achievement as the goal of your road—that the man who has no purpose is a machine that coasts downhill at the mercy of any boulder to crash in the first chance ditch, that the man who stifles his mind is a stalled machine slowly going to rust, that the man who lets a leader prescribe his course is a wreck being towed to the scrap heap, and the man who makes another man his goal is a hitchhiker no driver should ever pick up—that your work is the purpose of your life, and you must speed past any killer who assumes the right to stop you, that any value you might find outside your work, any other loyalty or love, can be only travelers you choose to share your journey and must be travelers going on their own power in the same direction. “Pride
Ayn Rand (Atlas Shrugged)
On the bus, I pull out my book. It's the best book I've ever read, even if I'm only halfway through. It's called Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë, with two dots over the e. Jane Eyre lives in England in Queen Victoria's time. She's an orphan who's taken in by a horrid rich aunt who locks her in a haunted room to punish her for lying, even though she didn't lie. Then Jane is sent to a charity school, where all she gets to eat is burnt porridge and brown stew for many years. But she grows up to be clever, slender, and wise anyway. Then she finds work as a governess in a huge manor called Thornfield, because in England houses have names. At Thornfield, the stew is less brown and the people less simple. That's as far as I've gotten... Diving back into Jane Eyre... Because she grew up to be clever, slender and wise, no one calls Jane Eyre a liar, a thief or an ugly duckling again. She tutors a young girl, Adèle, who loves her, even though all she has to her name are three plain dresses. Adèle thinks Jane Eyre's smart and always tells her so. Even Mr. Rochester agrees. He's the master of the house, slightly older and mysterious with his feverish eyebrows. He's always asking Jane to come and talk to him in the evenings, by the fire. Because she grew up to be clever, slender, and wise, Jane Eyre isn't even all that taken aback to find out she isn't a monster after all... Jane Eyre soon realizes that she's in love with Mr. Rochester, the master of Thornfield. To stop loving him so much, she first forces herself to draw a self-portrait, then a portrait of Miss Ingram, a haughty young woman with loads of money who has set her sights on marrying Mr. Rochester. Miss Ingram's portrait is soft and pink and silky. Jane draws herself: no beauty, no money, no relatives, no future. She show no mercy. All in brown. Then, on purpose, she spends all night studying both portraits to burn the images into her brain for all time. Everyone needs a strategy, even Jane Eyre... Mr. Rochester loves Jane Eyre and asks her to marry him. Strange and serious, brown dress and all, he loves her. How wonderful, how impossible. Any boy who'd love a sailboat-patterned, swimsuited sausage who tames rabid foxes would be wonderful. And impossible. Just like in Jane Eyre, the story would end badly. Just like in Jane Eyre, she'd learn the boy already has a wife as crazy as a kite, shut up in the manor tower, and that even if he loves the swimsuited sausage, he can't marry her. Then the sausage would have to leave the manor in shame and travel to the ends of the earth, her heart in a thousand pieces... Oh right, I forgot. Jane Eyre returns to Thornfield one day and discovers the crazy-as-a-kite wife set the manor on fire and did Mr. Rochester some serious harm before dying herself. When Jane shows up at the manor, she discovers Mr. Rochester in the dark, surrounded by the ruins of his castle. He is maimed, blind, unkempt. And she still loves him. He can't believe it. Neither can I. Something like that would never happen in real life. Would it? ... You'll see, the story ends well.
Fanny Britt (Jane, the Fox & Me)
Do I need to ask if you had anything to do with what I’m not wearing?” She wouldn’t freak out. She would remain calm, cool, collected. Oh shit, she didn’t remember a damn thing about falling into bed. “Sorry to disappoint you, Pepper, but I left you standing at the door. What you did after you closed it—in my face, I might add—is all on you.” He reached for the cover, but she grabbed it and pulled it tight around her body. “But I’m flattered that you include me in your fantasies.” “Why has no one murdered you by now? Or at least taken a soap-filled sock to you?” That was a fun thought. Jaime on the floor, all tied-up and being flogged. “No, on second thought, murder is better. It’s more permanent.” “My, but aren’t you bloodthirsty in the morning.” He leaned against the post at the foot of the bed, his eyes traveling her body, belying his stated disinterest. “Do you always sleep naked? Or just when you’re drunk?” “You got me drunk, you prick, while you were drinking water. You poured enough gin into me to fill a damn bathtub.” “You could have said no at any time.” “That’s what your mother should have said the night you were conceived.
Mercy Celeste (Wicked Game)
The Portal Potion Success! After weeks and weeks of trying, I’ve finally discovered the correct ingredients for the potion I’d hoped to create for my son! With just a few drops, the potion turns any written work into a portal to the world it describes. Even with my ability to create portals to and from the Otherworld, I never thought it would be possible to create a substance that allowed me passage to any world I wished. My son will get to see the places and meet the characters he’s spent his whole childhood dreaming about! And best of all, I’ll get to watch his happiness soar as it happens! The ingredients are much simpler than I imagined, but difficult to obtain. Their purposes are more metaphysical than practical, so it took some imagination to get the concoction right. The first requirement is a branch from the oldest tree in the woods. To bring the pages to life, I figured the potion would need the very thing that brought the paper to life in the first place. And what else has more life than an ancient tree? The second ingredient is a feather from the finest pheasant in the sky. This will guarantee your potion has no limits, like a bird in flight. It will ensure you can travel to lands far and wide, beyond your imagination. The third component is a liquefied lock and key that belonged to a true love. Just as this person unlocked your heart to a life of love, it will open the door of the literary dimensions your heart desires to experience. The fourth ingredient is two weeks of moonlight. Just as the moon causes waves in the ocean, the moonlight will stir your potion to life. Last, but most important, give the potion a spark of magic to activate all the ingredients. Send it a beam of joy straight from your heart. The potion does not work on any biographies or history books, but purely on works that have been imagined. Now, I must warn about the dangers of entering a fictional world: 1. Time only exists as long as the story continues. Be sure to leave the book before the story ends, or you may disappear as the story concludes. 2. Each world is made of only what the author describes. Do not expect the characters to have any knowledge of our world or the Otherworld. 3. Beware of the story’s villains. Unlike people in our world or the Otherworld, most literary villains are created to be heartless and stripped of all morals, so do not expect any mercy should you cross paths with one. 4. The book you choose to enter will act as your entrance and exit. Be certain nothing happens to it; it is your only way out. The
Chris Colfer (Beyond the Kingdoms (The Land of Stories, #4))
The rapt pupil will be forgive for assuming the Tsar of Death to be wicked and the Tsar of Life to be visrtuous. Let the truth be told: There is no virtue anywhere. Life is sly and unscrupulous, a blackguard, wolfish, severe. In service to itself, it wil commit any offense. So, too, is Death possessed of infinite strategies and a gaunt nature-but also mercy, also grace and tenderness. In his own country, Death can be kind. But of an end to their argument, we shall have none, not ever, until the end of all. So where is the country of the Tsar of Death? Where is the nation of the Tsar of Life? They are not so easy to find, yet each day you step upon both one hundred times or more. Every portion of Eath is infinitely divided between them, to the smallest unit of measure, and smaller yet. Even the specks of soil war with one another. Even the atoms strangle each other in their sleep. To reach the country of the Tsar of Life, which is both impossibly near and hopelessly far, you must not wish to arrive there, but approach is stealthily, sideways. It is best to be ill, in a fever, a delirium. In the riot of sickness, when the threatened flesh rouses itself, all redness and fluid and heat, it is easiest to topple over into the country you seek. Of course, it is just as easy, in this manner to reach the country of the Tsar of Death. Travel is never without risk.
Catherynne M. Valente (Deathless)
Dear me, I am happy the way you have turned out. I am happy the way you have closed in all the broken parts of your self and made them look like waves cutting across the edges of a shore that seems so distant yet alive. I am happy the way you screamed at every gust and almost fell back with choked tears and yet walked on while your mind told you otherwise. I am happy the way you caressed the numb tears of your heart and poured it out unashamedly for they made you so much more than just a piece of Earth. I am happy the way you believed in Love even when your love left you empty with scars and wounds that are yet unhealed. I am happy the way you left your wounds untouched for you knew the value of Life and the reason to walk on this pit of fire. I am happy the way you learnt to sprinkle rays from your ashes and yet remain unabsorbed in the chained hollows of your once broken soul. I am happy the way you tried to listen to your heart's cry for that led you to a paradise of a world lulled by His Mercy and Love. I am happy the way you chose to rise from your corpse and know that Life means love and light not only for your self but for everyone around. I am happy that you finally realized that your life is complete within itself and you are perfect beyond all your imperfections. I am happy that you found your calling in the horizon of smiles that you leave behind each time you cross path with a fellow Traveller of this voyage called Life. I am happy that in your solitude you found the company of your best friend that lies within. I am happy that even in the night you shine bright with the sun of your soul that knows no bound and trusts no fear. I am happy that you keep trying and pushing off all that puts you behind and never cease to wonder at the marvel of Life. I am happy that you never stopped to gaze at what you lost but stayed amazed at what you gained. I am happy that you keep stumbling through Life, waiting for the light that runs through an endless tunnel of hope, counting through the ever falling leaf of a grey rose that murmurs through an unending story of Hope and Faith. I am happy that you are all that you have become. And I am happy the way you have turned out. - A flicker, that lies inside of you.
Debatrayee Banerjee
Here before you lies the memorial to St. Cefnogwr, though he is not buried here, of course.” At her words, an uncanny knowing flushed through Katy and, crazy-of-crazy, transfixed her. “Why? Where is he?” Traci stepped forward, hand on her hip. A you’re-right-on-cue look crossed the guide’s face. She pointed to the ceiling. Traci scoffed. “I meant, where’s the body?” Her American southern accent lent a strange contrast to her skepticism. Again, the tour guide’s arthritic finger pointed upward, and a smile tugged at her lips, the smokers’ wrinkles on her upper lip smoothing out. “That’s the miracle that made him a saint, you see. Throughout the twelve hundreds, the Welsh struggled to maintain our independence from the English. During Madog’s Rebellion in 1294, St. Cefnogwr, a noble Norman-English knight, turned against his liege lord and sided with the Welsh—” “Norman-English?” Katy frowned, her voice raspy in her dry throat. “Why would a Norman have a Welsh name and side with the Welsh?” She might be an American, but her years living in England had taught her that was unusual. “The English nicknamed him. It means ‘sympathizer’ in Welsh. The knight was captured and, for his crime, sentenced to hang. As he swung, the rope creaking in the crowd’s silence, an angel of mercy swooped down and—” She clapped her hands in one decisive smack, and everyone jumped. “The rope dangled empty, free of its burden. Proof, we say, of his noble cause. He’s been venerated ever since as a Welsh hero.” Another chill danced over Katy’s skin. A chill that flashed warm as the story seeped into her. Familiar. Achingly familiar. Unease followed—this existential stuff was so not her. “His rescue by an angel was enough to make him a saint?” ever-practical Traci asked. “Unofficially. The Welsh named him one, and eventually it became a fait accompli. Now, please follow me.” The tour guide stepped toward a side door. Katy let the others pass and approached the knight covered in chainmail and other medieval-looking doodads. Only his face peeked out from a tight-fitting, chainmail hoodie-thing. One hand gripped a shield, the other, a sword. She touched his straight nose, the marble a cool kiss against her finger. So. This person had lived about seven hundred years ago. His angular features were starkly masculine. Probably had women admiring them in the flesh. Had he loved? An odd…void bloomed within, tugging at her, as if it were the absence of a feeling seeking wholeness. Evidence of past lives frozen in time always made her feel…disconnected. Disconnected and disturbed. Unable to grasp some larger meaning. Especially since Isabelle was in the past now too, instead of here as her maid of honor. She traced along the knight’s torso, the bumps from the carved chainmail teasing her fingers. “The tour group is getting on the bus. Hurry.” Traci’s voice came from the door. “Coming.” One last glance at her knight. Katy ran a finger down his strong nose again. “Bye,” she whispered.
Angela Quarles (Must Love Chainmail (Must Love, #2))
So there I was, light-headed with hunger, footsore, with the perimeter of safety having closed to about ten paces around me, and the Marquis of Shevraeth standing just on the other side of the wall. At least he didn’t--yet--know it. As if in answer, I heard the klunk of footsteps on the tiled floor directly above me. Someone else had been listening at a window and was now moving about. To come downstairs? Would the searchers go to the front or come to the back? I thought about, then dismissed, the idea of begging safety from the inhabitants. If they were not mercifully inclined, all they’d need to do was shout for help and I’d be collared in a wink. And if they were merciful, they faced a death sentence if caught hiding me. No, what I had to do was get out without anyone knowing I’d been inside the house. And nippily, too. Hearing the clatter of hooves and the jingle of harnesses and weapons, I edged close to the window and peered out again. All I could see was the movement of smeary colors, but it sounded like one riding had moved on. To divide up and start on the houses? What about the other group? Dark-hued stalks stood directly outside the window. Did one of them have a pale yellow top? I could just see him standing there narrow eyed, looking around. Then maybe he’d glance at the window and see something flesh-colored and blue just inside the edge… I closed my eyes, feeling a weird vertigo. Of course he couldn’t see me--it was dark inside and light out. That meant the window would be a blank, dark square to him. If he even gave it a look. I was letting fancy override my good sense, and if I didn’t stop it, his searchers would find me standing there daydreaming. I took a deep breath--and the stalks outside the window began to move. Soon they were gone from sight, and nothing changed in the window at all. I heard no more feet or hooves or swords clanking in scabbards. It was time for me to go. My heart thumped in time to the pang in my temples as I opened the storeroom door, peeked out, then eased the outside door open. Nothing…nothing…I slipped out into the alley. And saw two posted guards at the other end. They were at that moment looking the other way. I whisked myself behind a flowering shrub that bordered the street, wincing as I waited for the yells of “Stop! You!” Nothing. Breathing hard, I ran full speed back across the street and into the garden where I’d spent the night before. And with no better plan in mind, I sped along the paths to the shady section, found my fern, and crawled back in. The soil was still muddy and cold, but I didn’t mind; I curled up, closed my eyes, and tried to calm my panicking heart and aching head. And slept. And woke to the marching of feet and jingling of weaponry. Before I could move, there was a crackling of foliage and a spearhead thrust its way into my bush, scarcely an arm’s length above my head. It was withdrawn, the steps moved on, and I heard the smashing sound of another poke into the shrubbery there. “This is my third time through here,” a low voice muttered. “I tell you, if we don’t get a week’s leave when this is over, I’m going back to masonry. Just as much work, but at least you get enough time to sleep,” another voice returned. There was a snorting laugh, then the footsteps moved on. I lay in frightened relief, wondering what to do next. My tongue was sticky in my mouth, for I’d had nothing to drink since the night before, and of course nothing to eat but those few bites of the meat pie. How much longer can I do this? Until I get home, I told myself firmly. I’d wait until dark, sneak out of that town, and never return. I’ll travel by night and go straight west, I decided. How I was to get food I didn’t know, but I was already so light-headed from hunger, all I could think of was getting away.
Sherwood Smith (Crown Duel (Crown & Court, #1))
Faulkner describes in Light in August as “a prone and somnolent yellow cat,
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
thought such awful thoughts that I cannot even say them out loud because they would make Jesus want to drink gin straight out of the cat dish.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
sixth chapter of Luke: “Forgive, and ye shall be forgiven.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
forgiveness meant that God is for giving,
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Ferlinghetti writing “I am waiting for the rebirth of wonder
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Augustine said that to look for God is to find him,
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
And did you get what you wanted from this life even so? I did. And what did you want? To call myself beloved, to feel myself beloved on the earth.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
saw something once from the Jewish Theological Seminary that said, “A human life is like a single letter of the alphabet. It can be meaningless. Or it can be a part of a great meaning.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
In fact, not forgiving is like drinking rat poison and then waiting for the rat to die.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
The traveler, alas, is at the mercy of his aesthetic sensations. A fine evening, a seat under a plant tree, the smile of a peasant girl, the scent of orange flower, a view over mountains or river—and he feels at home. His country is not the land where his friends live, but the wider territory of beautiful things—the territory where, if one agrees with Stendhal, he collects those promissory notes of happiness which give a precious fraction of their value when they are pocketed. He is therefore continually subject to accidents. An ugly town, a rainy day, and unsympathetic hotel, and he is at once a double exile—equally far from his native land and from that ideal country which he has set out to visit. The only recourse left is a bottle of wine.
Gerald Brenan (Face of Spain)
with the animals dying around us our lost feelings we are saying thank you with the forests falling faster than the minutes of our lives we are saying thank you with the words going out like cells of a brain with the cities growing over us like the earth we are saying thank you faster and faster with nobody listening we are saying thank you we are saying thank you and waving dark though it is —W. S. MERWIN
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
How come you can hear a chord, and then another chord, and then your heart breaks open?
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I took off my boot and sock and examined my ankle, expecting—and indeed, in that perverse manner of the injured male, rather hoping—to find some splintered bone straining at the skin like a tent pole, making everyone who saw it queasy. But the ankle was just faintly bluish and tender and very slightly swollen, and I realized that once more in my life I had merely achieved acute pain and not the sort of grotesque injury that would lead to a mercy flight by helicopter and a fussing-over by young nurses in erotically starched uniforms.
Bill Bryson (Neither Here Nor There: Travels in Europe)
Montreal November 1704 Temperature 34 degrees “Girl! English, eh? What is your name? Indians stole you, eh? I’ll send news to your people.” His excellent speech meant that he did a lot of trading with the English. It meant, Mercy prayed, that he liked the English. She found her tongue. “Will you take me to France, sir? Or anywhere at all? Wherever you are going--I can pay.” He raised his eyebrows. “You do not belong to an Indian?” She flushed and knew her red cheeks gave their own answer, but rather than speaking, she held out the cross. The sun was bright and the gemstones even brighter. The man sucked in his breath. He leaned very close to her to examine the cross. “Yes,” he said. “It is worth much.” He straightened up slowly, his eyes traveling from her waist to her breast to her throat to her hair. The other sailors also straightened, and they too left their work, drawn by the glittering cross. “So you want to sail with me, girl?” He stroked her cheek. His nails were yellow and thick like shingles, and filthy underneath. He twined her hair into a hank, circling it tighter and tighter, as if to scalp. “You are the jewel,” he said. “Come. I get a comb and fix this hair.” The other sailors slouched over. They pressed against her and she could not retreat. He continued to hold her by the hair, as if she were a rabbit to be skinned. She could see neither river nor sky, only the fierce grins of sailors leaning down. “Eh bien,” said the Frenchman, returning to his own tongue. “This little girl begs to sail with us,” he told his men. “What do you say, boys?” He began laughing. “Where should she sleep? What am I bid?” She did not have enough French to get every word, but it was the same in any language. The sailors laughed raucously. Indians had strong taboos about women. Men would not be with their women if they were going hunting or having important meetings, and certainly not when going off to war. She had never heard of an Indian man forcing himself on a woman. But these were not Indians. She let the cross fall on its chain and pushed the Frenchman away, but he caught both her wrists easily in his free hand and stretched her out by the wrists as well as by the hair. Tannhahorens pricked the white man’s hand with the tip of his scalping knife. White men loading barrels stood still. White sailors on deck ceased to move. White passersby froze where they walked. The bearded Frenchman drew back, holding his hands up in surrender. A little blood ran down his arm. “Of course,” he said, nodding. “She’s yours. I see.” The sailors edged away. Behind them now, Mercy could see two pirogues of Indians drifting by the floating dock. They looked like Sauk from the west. They were standing up in the deep wells of their sturdy boats, shifting their weapons to catch the sun. Tannhahorens did not look at Mercy. The tip of his knife advanced and the Frenchman backed away from it. He was a very strong man, possibly stronger than Tannhahorens. But behind Tannhahorens were twenty heavily armed braves. The Frenchman kept backing and Tannhahorens kept pressing. No sailor dared move a muscle, not outnumbered as they were. The Sauk let out a hideous wailing war cry. Mercy shuddered with the memory of other war cries. Even more terrified, all the French took another step back--and three of them fell into the St. Lawrence River. The Sauk burst into wild laughter. The voyageurs hooted and booed. The sailors threw ropes to their floundering comrades, because only Indians knew how to swim.
Caroline B. Cooney (The Ransom of Mercy Carter)
23 And it came to pass after they had fasted and prayed for the space of two days and two nights, the limbs of Alma received their strength, and he stood up and began to speak unto them, bidding them to be of good comfort: 24 For, said he, I have repented of my sins, and have been redeemed of the Lord; behold I am born of the Spirit. 25 And the Lord said unto me: Marvel not that all mankind, yea, men and women, all nations, kindreds, tongues and people, must be born again; yea, born of God, changed from their carnal and fallen state, to a state of righteousness, being redeemed of God, becoming his sons and daughters; 26 And thus they become new creatures; and unless they do this, they can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God. 27 I say unto you, unless this be the case, they must be cast off; and this I know, because I was like to be cast off. 28 Nevertheless, after wading through much tribulation, repenting nigh unto death, the Lord in mercy hath seen fit to snatch me out of an everlasting burning, and I am born of God. 29 My soul hath been redeemed from the gall of bitterness and bonds of iniquity. I was in the darkest abyss; but now I behold the marvelous light of God. My soul was racked with eternal torment; but I am snatched, and my soul is pained no more. 30 I rejected my Redeemer, and denied that which had been spoken of by our fathers; but now that they may foresee that he will come, and that he remembereth every creature of his creating, he will make himself manifest unto all. 31 Yea, every knee shall bow, and every tongue confess before him. Yea, even at the last day, when all men shall stand to be judged of him, then shall they confess that he is God; then shall they confess, who live without God in the world, that the judgment of an everlasting punishment is just upon them; and they shall quake, and tremble, and shrink beneath the glance of his all-searching eye. 32 And now it came to pass that Alma began from this time forward to teach the people, and those who were with Alma at the time the angel appeared unto them, traveling round about through all the land, publishing to all the people the things which they had heard and seen, and preaching the word of God in much tribulation, being greatly persecuted by those who were unbelievers, being smitten by many of them. 33 But notwithstanding all this, they did impart much consolation to the church, confirming their faith, and exhorting them with long-suffering and much travail to keep the commandments of God. 34 And four of them were the sons of Mosiah; and their names were Ammon, and Aaron, and Omner, and Himni; these were the names of the sons of Mosiah. 35 And they traveled throughout all the land of Zarahemla, and among all the people who were under the reign of king Mosiah, zealously striving to repair all the injuries which they had done to the church, confessing all their sins, and publishing all the things which they had seen, and explaining the prophecies and the scriptures to all who desired to hear them. 36 And thus they were instruments in the hands of God in bringing many to the knowledge of the truth, yea, to the knowledge of their Redeemer. 37 And how blessed are they! For they did publish peace; they did publish good tidings of good; and they did declare unto the people that the Lord reigneth. Mosiah Chapter 28 The sons of Mosiah go to preach to the Lamanites—Using the two seer stones, Mosiah translates the Jaredite plates.
Joseph Smith Jr. (The Book of Mormon)
In smaller, more familiar things, memory weaves her strongest enchantments, holding us at her mercy with some trifle, some echo, a tone of voice, a scent of tar and seaweed on the quay. . . . This surely is the meaning of home—a place where every day is multiplied by all the days before it.
Freya Stark
My idea of everything going smoothly on an airplane is (a) that I not die in a slow-motion fiery crash or get stabbed to death by terrorists and (b) that none of the other passengers try to talk to me. All conversation should end at the moment the wheels leave the ground.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
As a result of the experience of consistent parental love and caring throughout childhood, such fortunate children will enter adulthood not only with a deep internal sense of their own value but also with a deep internal sense of security. All children are terrified of abandonment, and with good reason. This fear of abandonment begins around the age of six months, as soon as the child is able to perceive itself to be an individual, separate from its parents. For with this perception of itself as an individual comes the realization that as an individual it is quite helpless, totally dependent and totally at the mercy of its parents for all forms of sustenance and means of survival. To the child, abandonment by its parents is the equivalent of death. Most parents, even when they are otherwise relatively ignorant or callous, are instinctively sensitive to their children’s fear of abandonment and will therefore, day in and day out, hundreds and thousands of times, offer their children needed reassurance: “You know Mommy and Daddy aren’t going to leave you behind”; “Of course Mommy and Daddy will come back to get you”; “Mommy and Daddy aren’t going to forget about you.” If these words are matched by deeds, month in and month out, year in and year out, by the time of adolescence the child will have lost the fear of abandonment and in its stead will have a deep inner feeling that the world is a safe place in which to be and protection will be there when it is needed. With this internal sense of the consistent safety of the world, such a child is free to delay gratification of one kind or another, secure in the knowledge that the opportunity for gratification, like home and parents, is always there, available when needed.
M. Scott Peck (The Road Less Traveled: A New Psychology of Love, Traditional Values and Spiritual Growth)
Terrible cultural struggle is kindled by the demand that that which is great shall be eternal. For everything else that lives exclaims 'No!' The customary, the small, and the common fill up the crannies of the world like a heavy atmosphere which we are all condemned to breathe. Hindering, suffocating, choking, darkening, and deceiving: it billows around what is great and blocks the road which it must travel towards immortality. This road leads through human brains — through the brains of miserable, short-lived creatures who, ever at the mercy of their restricted needs, emerge again and again to the same trials and with difficulty avert their own destruction for a little time. They desire to live, to live a bit at any price. Who could perceive in them that difficult relay race by means of which only what is great survives? And yet again and again a few persons awaken who feel themselves blessed in regard to that which is great, as if human life were a glorious thing and as if the most beautiful fruit of this bitter plant is the knowledge that someone once walked proudly and stoically through this existence, while another walked through it in deep thoughtfulness and a third with compassion. But they all bequeathed one lesson: that the person that lives life most beautifully is the person who does not esteem it. Whereas the common man takes this span of being with such gloomy seriousness, those on their journey to immortality knew how to treat it with Olympian laughter, or at least with lofty disdain. Often they went to their graves ironically — for what was there in them to bury? The boldest knights among these addicts of fame, those who believe that they will discover their coat of arms hanging on a constellation, must be sought among philosophers. Their efforts are not dependent upon a 'public,' upon the excitation of the masses and the cheering applause of contemporaries. It is their nature to wander the path alone. Their talent is the rarest and in a certain respect most unnatural in nature, even shutting itself off from the hostile towards similar talents. The wall of their self-sufficiency must be made of diamond if it is not to be demolished and shattered. For everything in man and nature is on the move against them. Their journey towards immortality is more difficult and impeded than any other, and yet no one can be more confident than the philosopher that he will reach his goal. Because the philosopher knows not where to stand, if not on the extended wings of all ages. For it is the nature of philosophical reflection to disregard the present and momentary. He possesses the truth: let the wheel of time roll where it will, it will never be able to escape from the truth.
Friedrich Nietzsche
Leor smiled. “Merci, Monsieur Rusé.” “De rien.” Jean replied, and then he checked his watch. “Our flight will be leaving soon. Are you ready for that adventure? Can you brave the terrors of second class?” Leor laughed. “It depends if I get the window seat.
Zechariah Barrett (Beyond Chivalry (The Detective Games #2))
February 14 MORNING “And his allowance was a continual allowance given him of the king, a daily rate for every day, all the days of his life.” — 2 Kings 25:30 JEHOIACHIN was not sent away from the king’s palace with a store to last him for months, but his provision was given him as a daily pension. Herein he well pictures the happy position of all the Lord’s people. A daily portion is all that a man really wants. We do not need tomorrow’s supplies; that day has not yet dawned, and its wants are as yet unborn. The thirst which we may suffer in the month of June does not need to be quenched in February, for we do not feel it yet; if we have enough for each day as the days arrive we shall never know want. Sufficient for the day is all that we can enjoy. We cannot eat or drink or wear more than the day’s supply of food and raiment; the surplus gives us the care of storing it, and the anxiety of watching against a thief. One staff aids a traveller, but a bundle of staves is a heavy burden. Enough is not only as good as a feast, but is all that the veriest glutton can truly enjoy. This is all that we should expect; a craving for more than this is ungrateful. When our Father does not give us more, we should be content with his daily allowance. Jehoiachin’s case is ours, we have a sure portion, a portion given us of the king, a gracious portion, and a perpetual portion. Here is surely ground for thankfulness. Beloved Christian reader, in matters of grace you need a daily supply. You have no store of strength. Day by day must you seek help from above. It is a very sweet assurance that a daily portion is provided for you. In the word, through the ministry, by meditation, in prayer, and waiting upon God you shall receive renewed strength. In Jesus all needful things are laid up for you. Then enjoy your continual allowance. Never go hungry while the daily bread of grace is on the table of mercy.
Charles Haddon Spurgeon (Morning and Evening-Classic KJV Edition)
When you’re travelling in different countries and people don’t necessarily speak the language you do, you quickly realize it doesn’t really matter whether you say “Thank you” or “Tousen takk” or “Merci” or “Danke schoen”—as long as you say something and smile, your gratitude will be appreciated and the other person will smile back. So when I got off the bus at the stop for the train station kindly indicated by the driver to whom I’d shown my Eurail pass and then gestured helplessly out at the streets, I smiled at him and said “Your children have fleas.” And sure enough, he smiled back, nodding happily.
Jass Richards (This Will Not Look Good on My Resume)
The military band did not make things easier. Having detected a larger than usual turnout of British travelers, and waiting with some infernal clairvoyance until Cyprian thought he had a grip on himself, just as he turned to bid Yashmeen a breezy arrivederci, they began to play an arrangement for brass of ‘Nimrod’ – what else? – from Elgar’s Enigma Variations. Teutonic bluntness notwithstanding, at the first major-seventh chord, an uncertainty of pitch among the trumpets contributing its touch of unsought innocence, Cyprian felt the tap opening decisively. It was difficult to tell what Yashmeen was thinking as she offered her lips. He was concentrating on not getting her vestee wet. The music took them for an instant in its autumnal envelope, shutting out the tourist chatter, the steam horns and quayside traffic, in as honest an expression of friendship and farewell as the Victorian heart had ever managed to come up with, until finally, the band moved mercifully on to ‘La Gazza Ladra.’ It wasn’t till Yashmeen nodded and released him that Cyprian realized they had been holding each other.
Thomas Pynchon
You killed a Christian? Fine. But if the victim had been a Muslim. . . The rules for restitution for wrongful death are also illuminating for Infidels. The Koran (2:178) establishes a law of retaliation (qisas) for murder: equal recompense must be given for the life of the victim, which can take the form of blood money (diyah): a payment to compensate for the loss suffered. In Islamic law (Sharia), the amount of compensation varies depending on the identity of the victim. ‘Umdat al-Salik (Reliance of the Traveller), a Sharia manual that Cairo’s prestigious Al-Azhar University certifies as conforming to the “practice and faith of the orthodox Sunni community,” says that the payment for killing a woman is half that to be paid for killing a man. Likewise, the penalty for killing a Jew or Christian is one-third that paid for killing a male Muslim.1 The Iranian Sufi Sheikh Sultanhussein Tabandeh, one of the architects of the legal codes of the Islamic Republic of Iran, explains that punishments in Iran for other crimes differ as well, depending on whether the perpetrator is a Muslim. If a Muslim “commits adultery,” Tabandeh explains, “his punishment is 100 lashes, the shaving of his head, and one year of banishment.” (He is referring, of course, to a Muslim male; a Muslim female would in all likelihood be sentenced to be stoned to death.) “But if the man is not a Muslim,” Tabandeh continues, “and commits adultery with a Muslim woman his penalty is execution.”   Bible vs. Koran “Muhammad is the messenger of Allah. And those with him are hard against the disbelievers and merciful among themselves.” —Koran 48:29 “So whatever you wish that men would do to you, do so to them.” —Matthew 7:12 Furthermore, if a Muslim kills a Muslim, he is to be executed, but if he kills a non-Muslim, he incurs a lesser penalty: “If a Muslim deliberately murders another Muslim he falls under the law of retaliation and must by law be put to death by the next of kin. But if a non-Muslim who dies at the hand of a Muslim has by lifelong habit been a non-Muslim, the penalty of death is not valid. Instead the Muslim murderer must pay a fine and be punished with the lash.
Robert Spencer (The Complete Infidel's Guide to the Koran)
Even at a distance he recognized the way she sat a horse, the tilt of her head. He couldn’t believe she had come so far and so quickly. Fate had indeed led her in a circle back to him. Ordering Blackbird back to his mother’s lodge, Hunter increased his pace, the dread of leaving his people forgotten. Destiny. A month ago he had railed against it. Now he wasn’t certain how he felt. Resentful, yet pleased. And relieved. Deep in the quiet places of his heart, he sensed the rightness. Fate. Today it had brought him a woman, a woman like no other, with skin as white as a night moon, hair like honey, and eyes like the summer sky. His woman, and this time she came freely. From the hilltop Loretta watched the lone man walking toward her from the village. Relief flooded through her when she recognized Hunter’s loose-hipped, graceful stride. She crossed herself quickly and murmured thanks to the Holy Mother for her intercession. A dozen emotions surging through her, she urged Friend down the embankment. Hunter met her halfway across the flat. As Loretta rode toward him, she couldn’t stop staring. Even though she had been away from him only a short while, she had forgotten how Indian he looked. How savage. He moved with the fluid strength of a well-muscled animal, his shoulders, arms, and chest in constant motion, a bronzed play of tendon and flesh. The wind whipped his hair about his face. Mercy. He wasn’t wearing any breeches, just a breechcloth and knee-high moccasins. She drew Friend to a halt and swallowed a rush of anxiety. Aunt Rachel was right. He was a Comanche, first, last, and always. Yet she had come to him. “Blue Eyes?” He slowed his pace as he got closer, his indigo eyes traveling the length of her, taking in every detail of her dress, from the high neckline down to the bit of petticoat and black high-topped shoes showing below the hem of her full skirts. His eyes warmed with the familiar gleam of laughter that had once irritated her so much. She fastened her gaze on his face and, resisting the need to blurt out her troubles, searched her mind for the appropriate Comanche greeting, determined to begin this encounter on the right note. “Hi, hites,” she said, lifting her right hand. He caught the stallion’s bridle and stepped close. He was so tall that he didn’t have to tip his head back to see her face. With a smile in his voice, he replied, “Hello.” Loretta caught her bottom lip between her teeth to stop its trembling. How like him to remember her word of greeting. He was her friend. She had been right to come here.
Catherine Anderson (Comanche Moon (Comanche, #1))
When mountains move, the earth shakes. When you stand as close as we have to real-life miracles, you will get roughed up. Mountains are big and we are small. A moving mountain can crush us. Splinters fall from the cross. They travel a long distance and they pierce the skin–maybe even the heart. And wrapped in this risk and danger is God’s embrace and promise to work all things (even evil ones) to the good of those who love him (pg 124)…You can’t play poker with God’s mercy–if you want the sweet mercy then you must swallow the bitter mercy.
Rosaria Champagne Butterfield (The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert: An English Professor's Journey Into Christian Faith)
After all, what makes any event important, unless by its observation we become better and wiser, and learn 'to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly before God'? To those who are possessed of this spirit there is scarcely any book of incident so trifling that does not afford some profit, while to others the experience of ages seems of no use; and even to pour out to them the treasures of wisdom is throwing the jewels of instruction away.
Olaudah Equiano (Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano 2e & Frankenstein 2e)
I’d read in Anne Lamott’s Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith,
Will Schwalbe (The End of Your Life Book Club)
She was always cheerful—until she turned eighty and started going blind. She had a great deal of religious faith, and everyone assumed that she would adjust and find meaning in her loss—meaning and then acceptance and then joy—and we all wanted this because, let’s face it, it’s so inspiring and such a relief when people find a way to bear the unbearable, when you can organize things in such a way that a tiny miracle appears to have taken place and that love has once again turned out to be bigger than fear and death and blindness. But this woman would have none of it. She went into a deep depression and eventually left the church. The elders took communion to her in the afternoon on the first Sunday of the month—homemade bread and grape juice for the sacrament, and some bread to toast later—but she wouldn’t be a part of our community anymore. It must have been too annoying for everyone to be trying to manipulate her into being a better sport than she was capable of being. I always thought that was heroic of her, that it spoke of such integrity to refuse to pretend that you’re doing well just to help other people deal with the fact that sometimes we face an impossible loss.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
[The people of Mali] are seldom unjust, and have a greater horror of injustices than other people. Their sultan shows no mercy to anyone who is guilty of the least act of it. There is complete security in their country. Neither traveller nor inhabitant in it has anything to fear from robbers or men of violence. —Ibn Battuta, fourteenth-century traveler
Patricia C. McKissack (The Royal Kingdoms of Ghana, Mali, and Songhay: Life in Medieval Africa)
My lady, your mercy in this matter is beyond what I can understand. Adulteresses must be chased from their villages.
Lina J. Potter (Palace Intrigue (A Medieval Tale, #3))
As our meeting came to a merciful end and we were readying to leave, I mentioned that the paternal grandfather and namesake of one of my staff traveling with us, Jan Karcz, had fought the Nazis as the general in charge of the Polish cavalry, then served with the underground resistance and had died at Auschwitz. Jan’s maternal grandfather had hidden two Jewish women in Warsaw, saving their lives, and his mother had served as a squad leader of teenage medics in Poland. Netanyahu’s demeanor changed instantly, and he asked us to be introduced to Jan.
James R. Clapper (Facts and Fears: Hard Truths from a Life in Intelligence)
All those years I fell for the great palace lie that grief should be gotten over as quickly as possible and as privately. But what I’ve discovered since is that the lifelong fear of grief keeps us in a barren, isolated place and that only grieving can heal grief; the passage of time will lessen the acuteness, but time alone, without the direct experience of grief, will not heal it.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I’m pretty sure that it is only by experiencing that ocean of sadness in a naked and immediate way that we come to be healed—which is to say, that we come to experience life with a real sense of presence and spaciousness and peace.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
I had long despised the Word of God and repressed the God of that Word. I came to Jesus Christ because the God of Scripture was merciful. He understood my motives, circumstances, thinking, behavior, emotions, and relationships better than all the psychologies put together. They saw only the surface of things, for all their pretension to “depth.” He cut to the heart. They described and treated symptoms (in great detail, with scholarship and genuine concern), but they could never really get to causes. He exposed causes. They misconstrued what they saw most clearly and cared about most deeply. He got it right. They could never really love adequately, and they could never really reorient the inner gyroscope. God is love, with power. They—we—finally misled people, blind guides leading blind travelers in hopeful circles, whistling in the dark valley of the shadow of death, unable to escape the self-centeredness of our own hearts and society, unable to find the fresh air and bright sun of a Christ-centered universe. Scripture took my life apart and put it back together new. The Spirit of sonship began the lifelong reorientation course called “making disciples.” The God of all comfort gave truth, love, and power. Christ exposed the pretensions of the systems and methods in which I had placed my trust. Even better, Jesus gave me himself to trust and follow.
David A. Powlison (Speaking Truth in Love: Counsel in Community)
Under the Empress Elizabeth, who abolished the death penalty for most offences in 1753, the crimes for which a man could be exiled to Siberia included fortune-telling, vagrancy, 'begging with false distress', prizefighting, wife-beating, illicit tree-felling, 'recklessly driving a cart without use of reins' and for a brief puritanical period in the 1750s, even taking snuff. Until the mid-eighteenth century, these exiles were always branded, usually on the face or right hand, to prevent them ever making their way back to the world. The convicts would spend up to two years shuffling in columns to their exile along the great Siberian trunk road known as the Trakt. The jingle of their chains and the ritual cries of “Fathers, have pity on us!” as the condemned men held out their caps for food was, for all travellers, who passed them in their high-wheeled carriages, the sound of Siberia. By tradition at Tobolsk, 1100 miles from Moscow, the prisoners’ leg irons were removed – a mercy, but also a sign that they had gone too far into the wilderness for escape to be survivable.
Owen Matthews (Glorious Misadventures: Nikolai Rezanov and the Dream of a Russian America)
Grief is an emotional acknowledgement that the way God originally intended things to be has been vandalized. Grief involves a distant memory of what the world was like prior to the disobedience of Adam and Eve--a world full of justice, grace, and mercy. Grief also involves a cry for what will one day be a universal reality: a world without pain, disease, or conflict.
Tullian Tchividjian (The Road We Must Travel: A Personal Guide for Your Journey)
surrender means you get to come on over to the winning side.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
God isn’t there to take away our suffering or our pain but to fill it with his or her presence,
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Keep walking, though there’s no place to get to. Don’t try to see through the distances. That’s not for human beings. Move within, but don’t move the way fear makes you move. Today, like every other day, we wake up empty and frightened. Don’t open the door to the study and begin reading. Take down a musical instrument. Let the beauty we love be what we do. There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Amygdala Hijack Our perception of our world occurs via our five senses.19 Information from these senses enters our brain stem from the spinal cord and travels along neural pathways to the limbic system. When our senses perceive a threat, our sympathetic nervous system is stimulated, resulting in a fight or flight response, also known as a stress response. When this happens, we are no longer able to think rationally. Instead, we are in reaction mode. When a threat is perceived, emotional memories stored in the midbrain’s amygdala can be evoked. When the amygdala is stimulated by a perceived threat, it signals to the hypothalamus, and this results in the release of the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline. These hormones are released into the bloodstream and transported to the brain, where they disconnect the frontal lobes and leave us at the mercy of our emotions and caught in amygdala hijack. This is a strong emotional state. The oxygen and glucose necessary for effective frontal brain high-order thinking are then diverted to the amygdala in the limbic system to process these emotions. While this takes place, the frontal brain is deprived of oxygen and glucose and unable to function effectively at a rational level. Emotional self-regulation20 activates the para-sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the release of hormones into the bloodstream to act as antidotes to the stress hormones. These antidotes gradually slow breathing and reduce the heart rate, enabling oxygen and glucose to return to the frontal brain, which permits rational thinking to take place again.
Gerry O'Sullivan (The Mediator's Toolkit: Formulating and Asking Questions for Successful Outcomes)
The heart that breaks open can contain the whole universe. JOANNA MACY
Anne Lamott (Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith)
Kisa Gotami hears of the Buddha, who had been teaching in India, and travels to him with the body of her deceased boy draped in her arms. She throws herself at the Buddha’s mercy and pleads for a cure to bring her son back. It’s said that the Buddha considers her case for a moment and then promises that he will do as she asks if she collects a single mustard seed from the home of a family that has not experienced loss. Kisa Gotami springs into action, knocking on every door in the village with her singular request. As the story goes, at each door she is confronted with stories of loss. The death of a daughter. A wife. A cousin. A friend. No home in the village could fulfill her request. It is then that Kisa Gotami realized the universality of sorrow, and she returned to the Buddha. The recognition that her grief wasn’t isolated in some ways healed her.
Adreanna Limbach (Tea and Cake with Demons: A Buddhist Guide to Feeling Worthy)
The Sufi Way is to follow the model provided by the Prophet‘s representatives on earth, the saints, who are the shaykhs or the spiritual masters. Once having entered the Way, the disciple begins to undergo a process of inward transformation. If he is among those destined to reach spiritual perfection, he will climb the ascending rungs of a ladder stretching to heaven and beyond; the alchemy of the Way will transmute the base copper of his substance into pure and noble gold. The Truth or „attainment to God“ is not a simple, one-step process. It can be said that this third dimension of Sufi teaching deals with all the inner experiences undergone by the traveler on his journey. It concerns all the „virtues“ (akhlaq) the Sufi must acquire, in keeping with the Prophet‘s saying, „Assume the virtues of God!“ If acquiring virtues means „attaining to God,“ this is because they do not belong to man. The discipline of the Way coupled with God‘s grace and guidance results in a process of purification whereby the veil of human nature is gradually removed from the mirror of the primordial human substance, made in the image of God, or, in the Prophet‘s words, „upon the Form of the All-Merciful.“ Any perfection achieved by man is God‘s perfection reflected within him. (p. 11-12)
William C. Chittick (Sufi Path of Love: The Spiritual Teachings of Rumi)
So while other teenagers were stuck in classrooms studying textbooks and taking notes during lectures, I was already out in the world, having dived head first into working for social change. I was learning complicated adult lessons in activism, campaign strategy, public relations, mass media, and corporate relations. And I was able to travel around the country, even if that sometimes meant seeing it through the eyeholes of an animal costume.
Nathan Runkle (Mercy for Animals: One Man's Quest to Inspire Compassion and Improve the Lives of Farm Animals)
How I Am Able To Envy You How I am able to envy you—the people of the day. He talked among you He walked beside you What a great feeling it must have been To see His face To touch His robe To hear His voice On that long ago road. How I am able to envy you—the three wise men. Who traveled by night and slept by day You took your pace and haste your way When you heard a Savior is born on that day What a great joy it must have been To fell before your knees in the presence of a new born King To offered Him gifts and sang Him hymn Blessed are you because you came. How I am able to envy you—the couple that invited His company. In response to His mother’s intercession He turned your water into wine What a great glory it must have been His first miracle you have seen You have tasted the sacredness of marriage And the abundance it brings You have tasted the sweetness of love That surpasses everything By His divine presence and His mother’s arrangement Christian marriage was raised to the dignity of a Sacrament. How I am able to envy you—the ones He cured. You deliberately stood at a distance Called in a loud voice and took your chance How it must have felt The light returning to your eyes The sound returning to your ears The strength returning to your feet The cleanse you longed to feel With all who came with the desire to be healed What a great feeling it must have been He opened your eyes with faith He opened your ears with truth And He opened your hearts with love A love born from His mercy and forgiveness. How I am able to envy you—the ones He raised to life. Experienced of a soul passing out of death Into fullness of life and liberty How it must have felt Life returning to your eyes Blood rush to your veins Air thrust to your lungs Waking from your sleep What a great feeling it must have been Having tasted death and knowing its defeat To rise to the life of grace and leave behind the grave of sin. How I am able to envy you—the penitent thief next to Him. At the very hour of your death Life flashes before your eyes Condemned justly for the sentence you received Refuse to lose your faith You see a light coming from His eyes Redeemed justly from the mercy you plead What a great glory it must have been The first beneficiary of God’s mercy you have obtained The eternal salvation which you have attained The reward too great you never expected to gain Reunited with Him in the paradise with joy and no more pain. How I am able to envy you—the seventy-two He sent out. His divine commission upon your head The power He bestowed The fire in your blood Your loyalty in His name The kindness in your heart The unceasing hope to succeed You performed miracles in His name What a great honor it must have been To be His hands and feet To be His ears and mouth To be His usable instrument On that triumphant and glorious moment. How I am able to envy you—the twelve He called His own Dine with Him Taught by Him Traveled beside Him Being with Him for years on end How I long to learn those words The way that you learned them from Him What a great feeling it must have been To touch and hold Him closed—as a Son of Man, as I never can.
Jimvirle/Jinvirle
Ninth month, 1753. -- In company with my well-esteemed friend, John Sykes, and with the unity of Friends, I travelled about two weeks, visiting Friends in Buck's County. We labored in the love of the gospel, according to the measure received; and through the mercies of Him who is strength to the poor who trust in him, we found satisfaction in our visit. In the next winter, way opening to visit Friends' families within the compass of our Monthly Meeting, partly by the labors of two Friends from Pennsylvania, I joined in some part of the work, having had a desire some time that it might go forward amongst us. About this time, a person at some distance lying sick, his brother came to me to write his will. I knew he had slaves, and, asking his brother, was told he intended to leave them as slaves to his children. As writing is a profitable employ, and as offending sober people was disagreeable to my inclination, I was straitened in my mind; but as I looked to the Lord, he inclined my heart to his testimony. I told the man that I believed the practice of continuing slavery to this people was not right, and that I had a scruple in my mind against doing writings of that kind; that though many in our Society kept them as slaves, still I was not easy to be concerned in it, and desired to be excused from going to write the will. I spake to him in the fear of the Lord, and he made no reply to what I said, but went away; he also had some concerns in the practice, and I thought he was displeased with me. In this case I had fresh confirmation that acting contrary to present outward interest, from a motive of Divine love and in regard to truth and righteousness, and thereby incurring the resentments of people, opens the way to a treasure better than silver, and to a friendship exceeding the friendship of men.
Benjamin Franklin (The Complete Harvard Classics - ALL 71 Volumes: The Five Foot Shelf & The Shelf of Fiction: The Famous Anthology of the Greatest Works of World Literature)
Imagine we all today sit together, Join our hands together, Pray to God to bring our hearts all together, So we are grateful to God for his blessings together, We pray to unite everyone under one community together, Let there be no discrimination between all of us together, You have created us all with a single soul altogether, You have given us life on this planet to live together, Everyone is traveling within and outside together, We are going to meet you one after another together, In your hands is our destiny all together, We are your creation gathered today together, All of us awaits your glance of mercy together, To you, we are calling oh the listener together, To you, we are calling oh the seen together, To you, we are calling oh the sustainer together, To you, we are calling oh the merciful together, To you, we are calling the creator together!
Aiyaz Uddin
One by one, two by two, the Hardesty witches are traveling through. With a storm of curses, they call from their tomes; they will drink your blood and dine on your bones.
Patricia Briggs (Storm Cursed (Mercy Thompson, #11))
Goodwin completes his sentence like this: Christ’s “own joy, comfort, happiness, and glory are increased and enlarged by his showing grace and mercy, in pardoning, relieving, and comforting his members here on earth.”1 A compassionate doctor has traveled deep into the jungle to provide medical care to a primitive tribe afflicted with a contagious disease. He has had his medical equipment flown in. He has correctly diagnosed the problem, and the antibiotics are prepared and available. He is independently wealthy and has no need of any kind of financial compensation. But as he seeks to provide care, the afflicted refuse. They want to take care of themselves. They want to heal on their own terms. Finally, a few brave young men step forward to receive the care being freely provided. What does the doctor feel? Joy. His joy increases to the degree that the sick come to him for help and healing. It’s the whole reason he came. How much more if the diseased are not strangers but his own family? So with us, and so with Christ. He does not get flustered and frustrated when we come to him for fresh forgiveness, for renewed pardon, with distress and need and emptiness. That’s the whole point. It’s what he came to heal. He went down into the horror of death and plunged out through the other side in order to provide a limitless supply of mercy and grace to his people.
Dane C. Ortlund (Gentle and Lowly: The Heart of Christ for Sinners and Sufferers)
Our bodies are lock and key, and we’re transfixed on each other. Inseparable. Insoluble. I seize her tongue, pulling her in, sucking her, wringing every drop of sweetness from the kiss. She whimpers, her hands clawing at my shoulders, my neck, scraping over my scalp. “I love you." Her words drop hot in my ear with her breasts flattened to my chest and her thighs clenching at my hips. She tightens her pussy around my cock, a deliberate, hungry grasp and release. "Bris.” My eyes roll back. I'm at the mercy of those muscles. "I love you, too." She tucks her head into the curve of my neck, her breaths short and sharp as she recites from “Sonnet LXXXI”, telling me I’m already hers, to rest with my dream inside her dream, that we are joined by forever itself, and that we’ll travel the shadows together. She pants, sitting up straighter, leveraging herself with one arm behind her on the bed, changing the angle, deepening the penetration. In the lamp's light, I see her head flung back in abandon, her muscles straining with the unrelenting ferocity, the rigor of our bodies. “You alone are my dream,” she says, adapting the quote, tears in the eyes she refuses to pull away from me. “And I alone am yours.” It is a pledge of persistence, hidden in the poems I sent her. It’s a vow that she won’t ever give up on us. Knowing she held the poetry in her heart when she wouldn't even consider me, when I wasn’t even sure there was any hope, undoes me. “Bristol, oh God." I touch my forehead to hers, twisting my fingers into the damp hair at her neck. Pressed together, our heartbeats ricocheting, the universe tips, a dazzling lurching. A spectacular axis spinning beyond my restraint, just beyond my control. I once threatened to make her come with my words, but as the stars go blindingly bright and then dark behind my eyes, I realize she’s the one who did it.
Kennedy Ryan (Grip Trilogy Box Set (Grip, #0.5-2))