Tag Archives: community

Like someone running

“I disappeared into books when I was very young, disappeared into them like someone running into the woods. What surprised and still surprises me is that there was another side to the forest of stories and the solitude, that I came out that other side and met people there.” — Rebecca Solnit Unlike Solnit, I …

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Too important

“Human beings are too important to be treated as mere symptoms of the past. They have a value which is independent of any temporal process──which is eternal, and must be felt for its own sake.” ― Lytton Strachey I had a rough week, interacting with various robotic systems that were creating errors related to banking, …

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Downright goodness

“It is, without doubt, the gifts we get from our excursions into differences—the people we come to know whom we could never have met otherwise, the wisdom we see in those we consider to be simpler than ourselves, the downright goodness of those we fear because we do not know them—that make us bigger of …

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The jangled soul can flee

‘Tis fitting in these days of noise, Here in these thunder years of steam, The soul should keep its equipoise And think its thoughts and dream its dream. We scar the placid vales with mills, We scoop the seas and shear the hills: ‘Tis well that to these temples of the mind The jangled soul …

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A tree in a story

“Victor Frankl whispered in my ear all the same. He said to me I was a tree in a story about a forest, and that it was arrogant of me to believe any differently. And he told me the story of the forest is better than the story of the tree…I asked God to help …

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Live faithfully a hidden life

Dear friends, thanks for visiting us today. We are still struggling with our loss, but surviving. Right now I am completely consumed with various tasks — catching up on school work, with three major papers, much reading, and several smaller assignments yet to complete; dealing with the seemingly endless paperwork that goes with my new …

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Available to all

“The rationale that etiquette should be eschewed because it fosters inequality does not ring true in a society that openly admits to a feverish interest in the comparative status-conveying qualities of sneakers. Manners are available to all, for free.” ― Judith Martin a.k.a. Miss Manners I’m not sure how etiquette came to be equated with …

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These four words

“I bring you the gift of these four words: I believe in you.” — Blaise Pascal I might never have met you face to face.  In fact, I may not even know who you are, or that you are reading this blog at all.  But I still believe in you. I believe in you because …

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I sit and watch

Oh! ’twas very sad and lonely When I found myself the only Population on this cultivated shore; But I’ve made a little tavern In a rocky little cavern, And I sit and watch for people at the door… Then we gather as we travel, Bits of moss and dirty gravel, And we chip off little …

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People together

“Adversity not only draws people together, but brings forth that beautiful inward friendship.” – Soren Kierkegaard Working together under difficult circumstances tends to strip away the vacuous and trivial concerns that we are too often preoccupied with, especially in affluent societies.  None of us want adversity or crisis, nor do most of us wish it …

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Sought and found

“I don’t know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know: the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought and found how to serve.” ― Albert Schweitzer Matt was so happy to be able to return to Camp Baker this year, after missing last year due …

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Not the same thing

“They say that we are better educated than our parents’ generation. What they mean is that we go to school longer. It is not the same thing.” — Richard Yates “But knowledge puffs up while love builds up.  Those who think they know something do not yet know as they ought to know.” — 1 …

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To welcome and help

“One of the marvelous things about community is that it enables us to welcome and help people in a way we couldn’t as individuals. When we pool our strength and share the work and responsibility, we can welcome many people, even those in deep distress, and perhaps help them find self-confidence and inner healing.”― Jean …

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Failures…were successes

(Photo by Dani of Teddy and Tottie) “Some of the biggest failures I ever had were successes.”  — Pearl S. Buck One year ago today, my post was about the beauty that is often present in imperfection.  A couple of weeks ago I had a most unusual experience which underscores the point that some setbacks …

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Our neighbors

“While the spirit of neighborliness was important on the frontier because neighbors were so few, it is even more important now because our neighbors are so many.”  — Lady Bird Johnson Almost everyone I know would like to make the world a better place.  We long to do great things, to make a difference.  For …

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No ordinary people

“There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal.” — C. S. Lewis My favorite author C. S. Lewis wrote many passages that touch my heart and open my mind, but none is more sobering and remarkable to me than the text that includes the quote above.  Think about it: every …

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Service is joy

“I slept and I dreamed that life is all joy. I woke and I saw that life is all service. I served and I saw that service is joy.” ― Kahlil Gibran One of the great things about any sort of volunteer work is meeting people who care about other people and the world in …

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Remembering: Promises to keep

“The woods are lovely, dark and deep.  But I have promises to keep,  And miles to go before I sleep…”  — Robert Frost It’s tempting to be drawn into our own ruminations. Trouble can be an isolating experience, and solitude is a seductive force, both healing and dangerous. If we withdraw too long or too …

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Of courtesy

Of Courtesy, it is much less Than Courage of Heart or Holiness, Yet in my Walks it seems to me That the Grace of God is in Courtesy.  – Hilaire Beloc On a beautiful September day not long ago, Jeff and I enjoyed a few hours on the boardwalk at Virginia Beach.  As we strolled …

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Sowing a seed

You never can tell when you do an act Just what the result will be; But with every deed you are sowing a seed, Though the harvest you may not see. — Ella Wheeler Wilcox It’s not surprising that several research studies document the benefits of volunteering to help others, whether formally or informally.  While …

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Everyone belongs

No one is a stranger here. Everyone belongs. Finding our forgiveness here, we in turn forgive all wrongs. — Bryan J. Leech On a recent Sunday during worship in northern Virginia, we sang one of my favorite songs before communion.  A verse from the song is quoted above.  Having entered the assembly that day feeling burdened with various worries …

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An honor to live

“I am grateful for my daily life; it is an honor to live it.  My day-to-day routine holds many mysteries, even though it has become ordinary and comfortable to me.”  — Steve Deger No matter where we travel, Jeff and I always try to get off the tourist path for at least a few hours, …

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Libraries will get you through

“Libraries will get you through times of no money better than money will get you through times of no libraries.” — Anne Herbert Whenever I am feeling grouchy about paying taxes, I try to think of the wonderful public libraries that have given so much to our family over the years.  I can think of …

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Travel the back roads

“To read the papers and to listen to the news… one would think the country is in terrible trouble. You do not get that impression when you travel the back roads and the small towns do care about their country and wish it well.” — Charles Kuralt Recently I’ve had to sharply curtail my exposure …

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A delightful society

“Books are delightful society.  If you go into a room and find it full of books – even without taking them from the shelves they seem to speak to you, to bid you welcome.”  ―    William Ewart Gladstone From the most magnificent libraries to the humblest bookshelves, I feel at home wherever there are books.  …

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