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Commemoration of Jack Winslow, Missionary, Evangelist, 1974 Let him who cannot be alone beware of community. He will only do harm to himself and to the community. Alone you stood before God when He called you; alone you had to answer that call; alone you had to struggle and pray; and alone you will die and give an account to God. You cannot escape yourself; for God has singled you out. If you refuse to be alone, you are rejecting Christ's call to you, and you can have no part in the community of those who are called.... Let him who is not in community beware of being alone. Into the community you were called -- the call was not meant for you alone; in the community of the called you bear your cross, you struggle, you pray. You are not alone even in death, and on the Last Day you will be only one of the great congregation of Jesus Christ. If you scorn the fellowship of the brethren, you reject the call of Jesus Christ.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer Quotes

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Above all, it is not necessary that we should have any unexpected, extraordinary experiences in meditation. This can happen, but if it does not, it is not a sign that the meditation period has been useless. Not only at the beginning, but repeatedly, there will be times when we feel a great spiritual dryness and apathy, an aversion, even an inability to meditate. We dare not be balked by such experiences. Above all, we must not allow them to keep us from adhering to our meditation period with great patience and fidelity. It is, therefore, not good for us to take too seriously the many untoward experiences we have with ourselves in meditation. It is here that our old vanity and our illicit claims upon God may creep in by a pious detour, as if it were our right to have nothing but elevating and fruitful experiences, and as if the discovery of our own inner poverty were quite beneath our dignity. With that attitude, we shall make no progress.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer Quotes

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Feast of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Teacher, Martyr, 1945 It is not experience of life but experience of the Cross that makes one a worthy hearer of confessions. The most experienced psychologist or observer of human nature knows infinitely less of the human heart than the simplest Christian who lives beneath the Cross of Jesus. The greatest psychological insight, ability, and experience cannot grasp this one thing: what sin is. Worldly wisdom knows what distress and weakness and failure are, but it does not know the godlessness of men. And so it also does not know that man is destroyed only by his sin and can be healed only by forgiveness. Only the Christian knows this. In the presence of a psychiatrist I can only be a sick man; in the presence of a Christian brother, I can dare to be a sinner.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer Quotes

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Feast of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Teacher, Martyr, 1945 Furthermore, [the unchristian environment] is the place where we find out whether the Christian's meditation has led him into the unreal, from which he awakens in terror when he returns to the workaday world, or whether it has led him into a real contact with God, from which he emerges strengthened and purified. Has it transported him for a moment into a spiritual ecstasy that vanishes when everyday life returns, or has it lodged the Word of God so securely and deeply in his heart that it holds and fortifies him, impelling him to active love, to obedience, to good works? Only the day can decide.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer Quotes

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Feast of Etheldreda, Abbess of Ely, c.678 Man is challenged to participate in the sufferings of God at the hands of a godless world. He must therefore plunge himself into the life of a godless world, without attempting to gloss over its ungodliness with a veneer of religion or trying to transfigure it. He must live a 'worldly' life and so participate in the suffering of God. He may live a worldly life as one emancipated from all false religions and obligations. To be a Christian does not mean to be religious in a particular way, to cultivate some particular form of asceticism (as a sinner, a penitent, or a saint), but to be a man. It is not some religious act which makes a Christian what he is, but participation in the suffering of God in the life of the world.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer Quotes

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In Christianity neither morality nor religion come into contact with reality at any point.

Friedrich Nietzsche Quotes

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Feast of Luke the Evangelist Almighty God, who created humanity after your image and gave them living souls that they may seek you and rule your creation, teach us so to investigate the works of your hand that we may subdue the earth to our use, and strengthen our intelligence for your service. And grant that we may so receive your Word as to believe in him whom you sent to give us the science of salvation and the forgiveness of our sins. All this we ask in the name of the same Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

James Clerk Maxwell Quotes

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Commemoration of Richard Rolle of Hampole, Writer, Hermit, Mystic, 1349 Lord Jesu, I ask Thee, give unto me movement in Thy love without measure; desire without limit; longing without order; burning without discretion. Truly the better the love of Thee is, the greedier it is; for neither by reason is it restrained, nor be dread thronged, nor by doom tempted.

Richard Rolle Quotes

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Commemoration of Alphege, Archbishop of Canterbury, Martyr, 1012 The centre of trouble is not the turbulent appetites -- though they are troublesome enough. The centre of trouble is in the personality of man as a whole, which is self-centred and can only be wholesome and healthy if it is God-centred.

Archbishop William Temple Quotes

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Commemoration of Frederick Denison Maurice, Priest, teacher, 1872 The truth is that every man is in Christ; the condemnation of every man is that he will not own the truth, he will not act as if it were true, that except he were joined with Christ, he could not think, breathe, live a single hour.

Frederick Denison Maurice Quotes

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Feast of Barnabas the Apostle The disorder of secularism is perhaps nowhere more apparent in our contemporary Church than in the extent to which we have permitted the order of the world to creep into the order of the Church... That it should carry out its mission to the men in the middle classes of capitalist society is doubtless a part of the Church's order; but that the mission should result in the formation of a middle-class church which defends the secular outlook and interests of that class is an evident corruption.

H. Richard Niebuhr Quotes

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Anybody with any maturity knows that an experienced Christian is more eager to have God use him than he is to use God for his own ends; but this does not mean that God is absent from the processes of business and livelihood, nor unconcerned about them, nor unable to reveal Himself through them. When we begin to look upon work, business, money, as potential sacraments through which God can work, we shall make better use of them.

Samuel M. Shoemaker Quotes

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Commemoration of William Morris, Artist, Writer, 1896 Commemoration of George Kennedy Bell, Bishop of Chichester, Ecumenist, Peacemaker, 1958 If Jesus Christ be God and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for Him.

C. T. Studd Quotes

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Feast of Columba, Abbot of Iona, Missionary, 597 Commemoration of Ephrem of Syria, Deacon, Hymnographer, Teacher, 373 If we would indeed know God in growing intimacy, we must go this way of renunciation. And if we are set upon the pursuit of God, He will sooner or later bring us to this test. Abraham's testing was, at the time, not known to him as such, yet if he had taken some course other than the one he did, the whole history off the Old Testament would have been different. God would have found His man, no doubt, but the loss to Abraham would have been tragic beyond the telling. So we will be brought one by one to the testing place, and we may never know when we are there. At that testing place there will be no dozen possible choices for us; just one and an alternative, but our whole future will be conditioned by the choice we make.

A.w. Tozer Quotes

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Commemoration of Rose of Lima, Contemplative, 1617 Fallacies about Christianity must always be faced as deterrents to right living, and not merely as mistakes in the mind, for it is the effect they have on our actions which matters most. So soon as we abstract them from our lives and think of them only as faults in our mental machinery, we tend to embrace the greatest fallacy of all -- which is to think of Christianity as a way of looking at life instead of a way of changing it.

Donald O. Soper Quotes

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Commemoration of Birinus, Bishop of Dorchester (Oxon), Apostle of Wessex, 650 I belong to the "Great-God Party", and will have nothing to do with the "Little-God Party." Christ does not want nibblers of the possible, but grabbers of the impossible.

C. T. Studd Quotes

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Just suppose members of our churches were voted on, like the members of certain civic clubs. Suppose three unexcused absences required that the individual's name be automatically dropped from the roll, and he could be reinstated only by special vote of the body. Suppose absences from services had to be made up by attending services in some other place, or by carrying out some special project. Suppose church members had to be re-elected to membership each year, and that their attendance and participation in the program of activities determined how the vote went. Oh, well -- just suppose. ... from The Baptist Messenger September 16, 2002 Feast of Cyprian, Bishop of Carthage, Martyr, 258 Commemoration of Ninian, Bishop of Galloway, Apostle to the Picts, c. 430 Commemoration of Edward Bouverie Pusey, Priest, tractarian, 1882 This seems a cheerful world, Donatus, when I view it from this fair garden, under the shadow of these vines. But if I climbed some great mountain and looked out over the wide lands, you know very well what I would see--brigands on the high roads, pirates on the seas; in the amphitheaters men murdered to please applauding crowds; under all roofs misery and selfishness. It is really a bad world, Donatus, an incredibly bad world. Yet in the midst of it I have found a quiet and holy people. They have discovered a joy which is a thousand times better than any pleasures of this sinful life. They are despised and persecuted, but they care not. They have overcome the world. These people, Donatus, are the Christians -- and I am one of them.

St. Cyprian Quotes

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Commemoration of John Wycliffe, Reformer, 1384 In order to the existence of such a ministry in the Church, there is requisite an authority received from God, and consequently power and knowledge imparted from God for the exercise of such ministry; and where a man possesses these, although the bishop has not laid hands upon him according to his traditions, God has Himself appointed him.

John Wycliffe Quotes

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Feast of Catherine of Siena, Mystic, Teacher, 1380 He has loved us without being loved... We are bound to Him, and not He to us, because before He was loved, He loved us... There it is, then: we cannot... love Him with this first love. Yet I say that God demands of us, that as He has loved us without any second thoughts, so He should be loved by us. In what way can we do this, then? ... I tell you, through a means which he has established, by which we can love Him freely; ... that is, we can be useful, not to Him -- which is impossible -- but to our neighbor... To show the love that we have for Him, we ought to serve and love every rational creature and extend our charity to good and bad -- as much to one who does us ill service and criticizes us as to one who serves us. For, His charity extends over just men and sinners.

Catherine Of Siena Quotes

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Of all the spirits, I believe the spirit of judging is the worst, and it has had the rule of me, I cannot tell you how dreadfully and how long... This, I find has more hindered my progress in love and gentleness than all things else. I never knew what the words, "Judge not that ye be not judged," meant before; now they seem to me some of the most awful, necessary, and beautiful in the whole Word of God.

F. D. Maurice Quotes

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Commemoration of Douglas Downes, Founder of the Society of Saint Francis, 1957 For the Platonic or Aristotelian philosophy it is of no importance whether Plato or Aristotle ever lived. For the mystical practice of an Indian, Persian, Chinese, or Neo-Platonic mystic it is a matter of indifference whether Rama, Buddha, Laotse, or Porphyrius are myths or not. The mystic has no personal relation to them. It is not here a question of somebody telling me the truth which of myself I cannot find, but of my finding an access to the depths of the world in the depths of my soul. And everywhere the tendency is to eliminate personality. Even where religion does not have this mystical character, it has no relation to an historical person, who communicates himself to me. That is the characteristic essence of the Christian faith alone. Even where a prophet plays the role of a mediator of divine truth, as for example in Islam, the religious act is not directed toward him but toward his teaching or message. But the Christian does not believe in the teachings of Jesus -- which would not be Christian faith, but general religion -- he believes in Christ Himself as being the Word of God.

Emil Brunner Quotes

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Let a man set his heart only on doing the will of God and he is instantly free. If we understand our first and sole duty to consist of loving God supremely and loving everyone, even our enemies, for God's dear sake, then we can enjoy spiritual tranquility under every circumstance.

A. W. Tozer Quotes

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Feast of Dominic, Priest, Founder of the Order of Preachers, 1221 Theologically, we have been discovering anew that the Church is not an appendage to the Gospel: it is itself a part of the Gospel. The Gospel cannot be separated from that new people of God in which its nature is to be made manifest.

Stephen Neill Quotes

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A generation of Christians reared among push buttons and automatic machines is impatient of slower and less direct methods of reaching their goals. We have been trying to apply machine-age methods to our relations with God. We read our chapter, have our short devotions, and rush away, hoping to make up for our deep inward bankruptcy by attending another gospel meeting or listening to another thrilling story told by a religious adventurer lately returned from afar. The tragic results of this spirit are all about us. Shallow lives, hollow religious philosophies, the preponderance of the element of fun in gospel meetings, the glorification of men, trust in religious externalities, quasi-religious fellowships, salesmanship methods, the mistaking of dynamic personality for the power of the Spirit; these and such as these are the symptoms of an evil disease, a deep and serious malady of the soul.

A. W. Tozer Quotes

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Feast of Patrick, Bishop of Armagh, Missionary, Patron of Ireland, c.460 Continuing a Lenten series on prayer: As a physician, I have seen men, after all other therapy has failed, lifted out of disease and melancholy by the serene effort of prayer. It is the only power in the world that seems to overcome the so-called "laws of nature"; the occasions on which prayer has dramatically done this have been termed "miracles". But a constant, quieter miracle takes place hourly in the hearts of men and women who have discovered that prayer supplies them with a steady flow of sustaining power in their daily lives.

Alexis Carrel Quotes

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