Quotes in Cahos

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About 15 years ago I began to collect quotes from books I had been reading that were particularly meaningful to me. I now have two volumes of such quotes. I call them, “My black books of quotes.“ because they are handwritten in…well, black books. One day I hope to publish these quotes as a special gift that I give to people who are special to me.

You can tell a lot about a person by the quotes they pass on. And you will, no doubt, learn some things about where I am coming from and what is important to me based on my quotes.

My plan right now is to post 8 to 10 special quotes each week that seem pertinent to the times in which we are living. These are quotes for chaotic times. I suggest that you read them slowly and prayerfully and see which one speaks to you the most and listen for the voice of the Spirit asking you what next steps you might take in response.

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The people to whom we minister and speak will not recall 99% of what we say to them. But they will never forget the kind of person we are. This is certainly true of influential ministers in my own past. The quality of our souls will indelibly touch others for good or for ill. So we must never forget that the most important thing happening at any moment, in the midst of all our ministerial duties, is the kind of persons we are becoming. (Dallas Willard)

We must guard against listening without hearing, and responding without thinking. (Thomas Merton)

When can substitute thinking with the secretion of clichés. (Thomas Merton)

My Lord God, I have no idea where I’m going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope that I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore I will trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone. (Thomas Merton)

The one who has drawn you to begin will guide you as you go along. (Robert Benson)

Jesus does not call you to be successful, but to be faithful. (Mother Teresa)

It is far more likely that we do not recognize God‘s presence in our lives than it is that he is not present in our lives. (Frederick Buechner)

About 15 years ago I began to collect quotes from books I had been reading that were particularly meaningful to me. I now have two volumes of such quotes. I call them, “My black books of quotes.“ because they are hand written in…well, black books. One day I hope to publish these quotes as a special gift that I give to people who are special to me.

You can tell a lot about a person by the quotes they pass on. And you will, no doubt, learn some things about where I am coming from and what is important to me based on my quotes.

My plan right now is to post 8 to 10 special quotes each week that seem pertinent to the times in which we are living. These are quotes for chaotic times. I suggest that you read them slowly and prayerfully and see which one speaks to you the most and listen for the voice of the Spirit asking you what next steps you might take in response.

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A servant can never know how much patience and humility is within as long as everything goes well. It is in sudden testings that our “treasure” is revealed. (Saint Francis of Assisi)

It is your duty often times to do what you don’t want to do, and your duty to leave undone what you would like to do. (Thomas A’ Kempis)

When we genuinely believe that inner transformation is God’s work and not ours, we can put to rest our passion to set others straight. (Richard Foster)


There is the service of guarding the reputation of others or, as Bernard of Clairvaux put it, the service of “charity.“ How necessary this is if we are to be saved from backbiting and gossip. The apostle Paul taught us to “speak evil of no one.” We may clothe our backbiting in all the religious respectability we want, but it will remain a deadly poison. There is a discipline in holding one’s tongue that works wonders within us. (Richard Foster)

One must get along without the security of neat and simple, ready-made solutions. There are things one has to think out, all over again, for oneself. (Thomas Merton)

Silence is the mother of speech. (Thomas Merton)

Those who enter into conflict with others do so because they do not know how to enter into spiritual combat with themselves. (Jeremy Driscoll)

About 15 years ago I began to collect quotes from books I had been reading that were particularly meaningful to me. I now have two volumes of such quotes. I call them, “My black books of quotes.“ because they are hand written in…well, black books. One day I hope to publish these quotes as a special gift that I give to people who are special to me.

You can tell a lot about a person by the quotes they pass on. And you will, no doubt, learn some things about where I am coming from and what is important to me based on my quotes.

My plan right now is to post 8 to 10 special quotes each week that seem pertinent to the times in which we are living. These are quotes for chaotic times. I suggest that you read them slowly and prayerfully and see which one speaks to you the most and listen for the voice of the Spirit asking you what next steps you might take in response.

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In our dealings with one another let us be more eager to understand those who differ from us then either to refute them or press upon them our own tradition. (William Temple, archbishop of Canterbury, 1881-1944)

Humility is more important than zeal. (Thomas Merton, 1961)

Crisis does not so much build character, but reveals character. (Russ Ikeda, 2006)

What God demands of me may make me look less perfect to others, and that it may rob me of their support, their affection, their respect. (Thomas Merton 1962)

The best thing I can give to others is to liberate myself from the common delusions and be, for myself and for others, free. (Thomas Merton 1968)

Life is like a vise, at times it will squeeze us. At those moments of pressure, whatever is inside will be found out. (John Maxwell)

Self righteousness is the plague of those who seek God. (Jan Johnson)

We often think God is using us to reform the world when it’s only a matter of our wanting to ventilate our opinions. (Jan Johnson)