Saturday, 29 February 2020

THE WEAKNESS OF STATS

'Hearts are rarely strangely warmed by statistics.'
Emma Ineson, Ambition: What Jesus said about power, success and counting stuff, p.55. 

KNOW YOUR LIMITS

'Lucky is the man who does not secretly believe that every possibility is open to him,'
Walker Percy in David Brooks, The Second Mountain, p.98. 

WHAT SHOULD YOU DO WITH YOUR LIFE?

'Let the young soul survey its own life with a view to the following question: 'What have you truly loved thus far? What has ever uplifted your soul, what has dominated and delighted it at the same time?' Assemble these revered objects in a row before you and perhaps they will reveal a law by their nature and their order: the fundamental law of your very self.' 
Friedrich Nietzsche in David Brooks, The Second Mountain, p.98. 

Friday, 28 February 2020

BEAUTIFUL PLACES

'Some of our most wonderful memories are beautiful places where we felt immediately at home.'
John O'Donohue in David Brooks, The Second Mountain, p.96. 

WHAT OUR HEARTS DESIRE

'The ultimate heart's desire - the love behind all other loves - is the desire to lose yourself in something or someone. Think about it: Almost every movie you've ever seen is about somebody experiencing this intense sense of merging with something, giving themselves away to something - a mission, a cause, a family, a nation, or a beloved.'
David Brooks,  The Second Mountain, p.45.

WHAT WILL YOUR MORAL LEGACY?

'We all grew up in one moral ecology or another. We all create microcultures around us by the way we live our lives and the vibes we send out to those around us, One of the greatest legacies a person can leave is a moral ecology - a system of belief and behavior that lives on after they die.'
David Brooks, The Second Mountain, p.4.

Sunday, 23 February 2020

WRITING AS THERAPY

'Those of who are writers work out our stuff in public, even under the guise of pretending to write about someone else. In other words, we try to teach what it is that we really need to learn.' 
David Brooks, The Second Mountain, p.xx.  

WHY LOVE NEEDS COMMITMENT

'A commitment is falling in love with something and then building a structure of behavior around it for those moments when love falters.' 
David Brooks, The Second Mountain: The Quest for a Moral Life, p.xviii.

Saturday, 22 February 2020

SERVICE LEADS TO JOY

'Have you ever noticed that people who are self-focused and narcissistic are usually really unhappy, if not depressed? Sadly, I know this from experience. But have you also noticed that people who are generally others-focused and more selfless are usually very happy? That's not a coincidence. It's the way of Jesus in action. When we're down, one of the best things we can do is serve somebody else. It's the backdoor to joy. And it's always unlocked.' 
John Mark Comer, Garden City, p.279. 

HEAVEN IS NOT OUR HOME

'...contrary to the popular saying, haven is not our home. Earth is. Not earth as it is now, but Earth as it will be in the future. Our hope isn't for another place, but another time. Yes, as followers of Jesus, we go to heaven when we die, but we don't stay there. If Jesus is a "ticket to heaven," as the preacher says, then he's a round-trip ticket, not a one-way. Because at the resurrection, we come back.'
John Mark Comer, Garden City, p.248. 

Sunday, 9 February 2020

THE PROBLEMS OF BEAUTY & EVIL

'I have to admit that sometimes nature seems more beautiful than is strictly necessary. Outside the window of my home office there is a hackberry tree, visited frequently by a convocation of politic birds: blue jays, yellow-throated vireos, and, loveliest of all, on occasional red cardinal. Although I understand pretty well how bright coloured feathers evolved out of competition for mates, it is almost irresistible to imagine that all this beauty was somehow laid on for our benefit. But the God of birds and trees would have to be also the God of birth-defects and cancer.'
Steven Weinberg, Dreams of a Final Theory: The Search for the Fundamental Laws of Nature, p.200.

Thursday, 6 February 2020

WHAT DO YOU WANT TO BE WHEN YOU GROW UP?

'We usually ask little kids, What do you want to be when you grow up? I wonder if we're setting them up for failure with that question. Maybe a better question is, Who are you? What do you think God made you to do when you grow up?' 
John Mark Comer, Garden City: Work, Rest and the Art of Being Human, p.73. 

Monday, 3 February 2020

BEAUTY IS ELUSIVE

'The beauty of the natural world is, at best, the echo of a voice, not the voice itself. And if we try to pin it down - literally, in the case of a butterfly-collector - we find that the key thing itself, the elusive beauty which keeps us always looking further, is precisely what you lose when the pin goes in. Beauty is here, but it is not here. It is this - this bird, this song, this sunset - but it is not this.' 
Tom Wright, Simply Christianity, p.38. 

Sunday, 2 February 2020

WHAT MAKES A GOOD STORY?

'Stories matter. They invite participation and move us to action. But not all stories are equally compelling. We judge a story according to its fidelity to reality and to our longings.' 
Paul M Gould, Cultural Apologetics, p.210. 

A GOOD QUESTION

'Is there a story that understand you?'
Paul M Gould, Cultural Apologetic, p.206.