“If I ever become a Saint-I will surely be one of ‘darkness.’ I will continually be absent from Heaven- to light the light of those in darkness on earth.”
- Mother Teresa of Calcutta


"It is not that God has a mission for the church, but rather, God has a church for His mission. God's goal is the blessing of all the peoples of the earth(through Abraham)." - Chris Wright


A word of wisdom from someone I don't normally quote: " When the power of love overcomes the love of power, the world will know peace."( Jimi Hendrix)


“A Nation should not be judged by how it treats its privileged citizens, but how it treats its marginal ones.” (Nelson Mandela). Or we could just say that that the shalom and justice of a nation should be evaluated by looking out of the windows of its prisons.



S. Lewis was asked the question “Is it any worse when 10,000 people die than when one person dies?” His response was that in many ways it is worse for us but it is not necessarily worse for the 10000 individuals who experienced death. Death can only experienced by individual persons, not by groups of people.

However this is not to minimize the tragedy of 10,000 dying, but rather to maximize the value of a single person dying. The social impact and corporate grief is greater for us, but not for those who have died (and here I open a door that would take more sensitivity and space than I have right now).

The ancient wisdom of the Talmud (Sanhedrin 37a), while not answering directly the question Lewis was asked, comes close to it: “If any person causes a single soul (life)…to perish, scripture regards him as if he had caused an entire world to perish: and if any human being saves a single soul (life)…scripture regards him as if he had saved an entire world”


“Your sons and daughters will be given to another nation, and you will wear out your eyes watching for them day after day...” (Deut 28:32). Did Jesus have this in mind when teaching the parable of the prodigal son? God is the father of every prodigal and he “wears out [his] eyes” watching for their return.


Anyone have a tent going cheap?

Apparently an “inert” object is not simply one which remains still unless something moves it, but also one which keeps moving until something stops it. Sadly the church often suffers from the disease of inertitude. We just keep things going the way they are until something stops it. For more…

And it’s not just the church: It’s me! I often simply keep moving, doing the same things in the same way, until something stops me! (Who said that the definition of insanity was to keep doing the same thing over and over again and expect to get different results?)

Perhaps this is why the people of God began by living in tents? When the cloud stopped they stopped and when the cloud moves they moved. I have always loved camping. Perhaps it is the antidote to inertitude? Anyone have a tent going cheap?


"Landscape: what is outside. Inscape: what is inside." Sadly the first is easier to cultivate than the second. (Source unknown)


"A journey is best measured in friends, rather than miles." -Tim Cahill


God is “roomy”.

We say “there is a lot of love between them”. With the Trinity, it is this “space” (the love between) that makes room for us.


"The truth shall make you odd"

"Flannery O'Connor's pithy revision of our Lord's declaration about the power of truth has haunted me for some time. The truth does make us free, but the freedom we enjoy and the life that freedom enables has the effect of making us odd in the eyes of the world, and some of us (as O'Connor knew) are odder then others." (ken Myers) In the King James Version we are called "a peculiar people" (Deut 1:2). I wish the new translators had not changed it as previously it gave me permission to be as "odd" as necessary in advancing the kingdom!


Anaxagoras, while engaging in a catechetical-type exercise, answered the question, “Why are you here on earth?” with the stark reply, “To behold.” And he was right. To behold the glory of God in creation and to behold the glory of God in the face of Jesus is exactly why we are here.


“If I ever become a Saint-I will surely be one of ‘darkness.’ I will continually be absent from Heaven- to light the light of those in darkness on earth.”
- Mother Teresa of Calcutta


"Comparison is the thief of joy." - Eleanor Roosevelt


Humanity is not made of heroes

Speaking of his friendship with C.K. Chesterton, Emile Cammaerts, said “listening to him, I understood again what I had once understood in my childhood, that humanity is not made of heroes, but of common men and women, and that the best way of being original is to be commonplace”.

This is not to settle for the parochial and the prosaic, but to realize that being “common”, being content with who I am, is another way of describing the simple dignity that is born of the realization that I have the high honor of bearing the image of God in a way that is unique to me, and only me, among the sons of men .


"The answers to great questions are not obvious. They are not shouted at us, or written up in the sky. We cannot find them by buying an examination guide in the bazaar. We have to take risks if we are to understand the really important things. We have to look, to listen, to ponder, to reflect, to experiment and to ultimately take risks - to risk our very selves. The answers to great questions have to be struggled for." Lesslie Newbigin - Journey into Joy


“…without a factual understanding of what happened in the past we will never know where we have been or where we may be headed.”(Charles Kay, afterword to Wilderness and Political Ecology quoted in Ian Provan’s. Convenient Myths)


“When you find yourself entirely enclosed, rested, softened, and anointed in Jesus, then you will have begun indeed to find him.” (Walter Hilton, born c. 1340—died March 24, 1396, Thurgarton Priory, Nottinghamshire, Eng.), devotional writer, one of the greatest English mystics of the 14th century.


“Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, "Do it again"; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown-up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. But perhaps God is strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, "Do it again" to the sun; and every evening, "Do it again" to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we.”

G.K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy


(2 KINGS 3:1-27)

“ But recognizing that we are not in control of our ends only produces anxiety when we assume that we are not in control of our ends only produces anxiety when we assume that we should be in control. In Scripture, recognizing that we are not in control is a source of joy because it is combined with the confidence that someone is in control, someone who is far wiser than we. Recognizing our utter dependence removes the heavy yoke and leaves us buoyant, lighter than air.” (unknown)


"Food is the love of God made edible." (One of the Church fathers, I don't remember which one)


John Staniloae comments that “in framing oneself freely by the needs of others, plenitude is realized in the picture frame of one’s own life”. As our Lord said, it is only as we lose our lives in self-giving love that we truly find them.


Theology As Worship

We have come to equate orthodoxy with “right thinking”, when it could be translated more accurately “right worship” (“doxa” in “orthodoxy” means “glory”). For the church fathers the two could not be separated. Theology was only separated from worship when the monastery and the university went their separate ways in the late Middle Ages. We have been suffering the consequences ever since.


“‘Put your hand into my wounds,’ said the risen Jesus to Thomas, ‘and you will know who I am.’ The wounds of Christ are his identity. They tell us who he is. He did not lose them. They went down into the grave with him and they came up with him—visible, tangible, palpable. Rising did not remove them. He who broke the bonds of death kept his wounds.” (Nicholas Wolterstorff)


“We sleep on mystery as on a pile of pillows.” (unknown Nepali farmer)


“The revelation of the nature of God in Jesus is the vantage-point from which Christians must construct their understanding of that God to whom the Old Testament bears witness.” (Gorden McConville)


Through the cross and the resurrection, "God's tomorrow has already taken up residency in humanity's today." (Alan Lewis)


"...the grave of Jesus is simultaneously the place where God is undeniably absent and also resolutely present..." (Alan Lewis)


"People travel to wonder at the height of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars; and they pass by themselves without wondering." (Augustine)


"In the history of ideas, the notion of human dignity flowed from the fact of incarnation." (Vishal Mangalwadi)

"The purpose of scientific statements is the elimination of ambiguity. The purpose of symbolic statements is the inclusion of it." (Austin Farrer)


"Adversity is the good man's shining time. " (Edward Young)


"If there is salvation in no other name, it is because there was creation in no other name" -- ("through him all things were created". (Gorden McConville)


“There is a dream it in the heart of God for every human person.” (author unknown)


“I have never studied theology except to improve my life.’ (Phillip Melanchthon--obtained BD at 14 years old and at 21 was Professor of Greek and Hebrew at Wittenberg) “Evangelism without theology is to beget children for the evil one.” (John Wesley)


There is an old French proverb which says that a coincidence is an event in which God wishes to remain anonymous.


Cyril of Alexander spoke of "intellectual cheerfulness" (a virtue I am working on cultivating!).


“Life is what happens while you are making other plans.” (author unknown)


“If what you think about God does not look like Jesus then you need to think again.” (Bill Johnson)


“It is the nature of love to communicate. Ultimately love, if it can speak, cannot remain silent” (Dennis Kinlaw speaking on scripture)


Ray Anderson describes his memoirs as, "Being the retracing of soul steps that cannot be seen until words are dusted over them."


“Ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.” (St.Jerome)


"We forget that most of Jesus' miracles were on the behalf of the suffering."


"I recently learned that Orthodox Christianity, of which I am a practitioner, forbids the harm of any creature-even insects-within the church. I pondered this one Sunday as I sang "Holy, Holy, Holy" while watching an ant scurry about my feet. The grace of sanctuary is extended even to life that cannot understand the One who provides it." (Bethany Torode)


The question is not, "Where does God fit into the story of my life?" but, "Where does my life fit into the story of God's mission?"


"The Church is commanded to take the gospel to the margins of the earth (where we find the non-believer) and to the margins of society (where we find the non-person)." (D. Chronic)


“When God speaks, no one yawns. When God speaks, people either are terrified or edified.” (author unknown)


"God's commands do not infringe on our freedom, they enable it." (Jensen)


"If you are not in an ongoing conversation with God all you have to pass on are rumors."


“The church exists by the Mission as fire exists by burning.” (Emil Brunner)


“Jesus Christ is the answer to which every human life is the question.” (Karol Józef)


"The hermeneutic of the gospel is the life of the congregation that lives it." This means that if we separate belief & behavior we distort the very truth that we live to proclaim. (author unknown)


"At Easter Jesus rose from the dead. At Pentecost Jesus rose into his church, his body, by the Spirit." (Robert Jenson)


He was born in a borrowed crib and buried in a borrowed cave (as with Lazarus it was "a cave with a stone laid across the entrance"; John 11:38). His last conversation before he died was with a criminal ("today you will be with me in Paradise"; Luke 23:39-43) and his first conversation after he defeated death and rose from the dead was with a prostitute (Mary Magdalene 20:15-20). What kind of God is this? What kind of love is this? Words escape me. I have to kneel and worship.


“The beauty of this world is Christ's smile for us coming through matter.” (Simone Weil)


“If the New Testament is right, Christ did not come to pluck souls from an evil and worthless creation and transport them to an angelic existence; instead he came to announce the beginning of the world's renewal.” (Norman Klassen & Jens Zimmerman)


"Joy is an irrefutable armor." (Kurt Mahler)


"He who cannot forgive breaks the bridge over which he himself must cross." (George Herbert)


"History belongs to the intercessors." (Walter Wink)


“Time: everything eats it up, but only love really uses it.” (Voltaire--he did say some good things!)


The purpose of scientific statements is the elimination of ambiguity. The purpose of symbolic statements is the inclusion of it.


“When we are converted we become part of the biography of God.” (author unknown)


"The church is sent out as the earthly-historical form of Jesus' own existence in the world." (Karl Barth)


“The church is commanded to take the gospel to the margins of the earth (where we find the nonbeliever) and to the margins of society (where we find the non-person).” David Chronic


“All beauty in the world is either a memory of paradise or a prophecy of the transfigured world.” [the new heavens and earth] Nicholas Berdyaev.


"Becoming a Christian is not my accepting Christ (appropriation), it is Christ apprehending me (expropriation)." Hans Ur von Balthasar


John Wesley had a passion for discovering medical cures and inventing exercise equipment, including THE TREADMILL, arising from his love for the poor and his desire to alleviate their physical suffering.