Using Your Talent: A Quint of Quotes

Fellow travelers,

Here is another “Quint of Quotes,” or five somewhat related sayings, from my collection.  These follow up yesterday’s Sunday Share from Kevin DeYoung, where he wrote that even Jesus “did not try to do it all. And yet, he did everything God asked him to do.”  I hope you find them interesting and thought-provoking.  Enjoy!

Photo by Tom Bradley on Unsplash

“Use what talents you possess: the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best” – Henry Van Dyke

“We can do no great things, only small things with great love.” – Mother Teresa

“It is not your business to succeed, but to do right. When you have done so the rest lies with God.” – C. S. Lewis

“All God’s giants have been weak men, who did great things for God because they reckoned on His being with them.” – James Hudson Taylor, founder of the China Inland Mission

“No one can do everything, but everyone can do something” – Max Lucado

Perils of Politics: A Quint of Quotes

Fellow travelers,

Here is another “Quint of Quotes” from my collection.  Five quotes somewhat related to each other, but not exactly in agreement.  I just began reading a book I got for Christmas, Faithful Presence by Bill Haslam, which opens by describing how polarized and angry America has become. In this environment, he asks the question: “do [Christians] just give up on the public square as a place to solve problems?”  These quotes aren’t an answer to that question, but I hope you find them interesting and thought-provoking.  Enjoy!

“Just because you do not take an interest in politics doesn’t mean politics won’t take an interest in you.” – Pericles, Greek statesman

“Only those will permit their patriotism to falsify history whose patriotism depends on history…A man who loves France for being military will palliate the army of 1870. But a man who loves France for being France will improve the army of 1870…The more transcendental is your patriotism, the more practical are your politics.” – G.K. Chesterton

“The less prudence with which others conduct their affairs, the greater the prudence with which we should conduct our own affairs” – Warren Buffett

The opening of the U.S. Constitution. Public Domain.

“I once carried on a brief correspondence with a man who objected to my interpretation of Romans 13. He said that all government was of the Devil and that Christians must not bow to the authority of ‘the powers that be.’ I pointed out to him that even his use of the United States mail service was an acceptance of governmental authority. The money he spent buying the paper and stamps also came from the ‘powers that be.’ For that matter, the very freedom he had to express himself was a right guaranteed by—the government!” – Warren Wiersbe

“When we are wrong, make us willing to change. And when we are right, make us easy to live with.” – Peter Marshal

Promises of Life, Godliness, and Excellence

Fellow travelers,

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.” – 2 Peter 1:3-4

We do not, and cannot, depend on our own merit to convince God to love us, therefore:
“This consolation I would wish all Christians in their prayers: the testimony of a good conscience to assure them of God’s promises. But to obtain what they ask must only depend upon him, all opinion and thought of our own justice being laid aside.” – John Knox

Today in prayer, seek His power in His promises.  He wants us to have “all things that pertain to life and godliness” and He is faithful.


Post inspired by McKim, Donald K.  Everyday Prayer with the Reformers (2020).  P. 115.

Presents of Presence: A Holiday Quint of Quotes

Dear fellow travelers,

With mere days remaining until Christmas, here is a Quint of Quotes, five sayings for the holidays!

“Attention is the rarest and purest form of generosity” – Simone Weil

“The highest form of knowledge is empathy, for it requires us to suspend our egos and live in another’s world” – Plato

“When given the choice between being right or being kind choose kind.” – from the book Wonder, by R.J. Palacio

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” – Paul, in Ephesians 4:32

“Strange, isn’t it? Each man’s life touches so many other lives. When he isn’t around he leaves an awful hole, doesn’t he?” – guardian angel Clarence Oddbody, in It’s a Wonderful Life

Merry Christmas to all my readers – first timers, occasional passersby, and a handful of regulars!

The Brief Joy of Falling Back

English writer Samuel Johnson wrote sometime in the 1700’s:

“How small of all that human hearts endure,
That part which laws or kings can cause or cure.
Still to ourselves in every place consigned,
Our own felicity we make or find.
With secret course, which no loud storms annoy,
Glides the smooth current of domestic joy.”

Photo by Mike Labrum on Unsplash

By setting the clock back this week we get a bit of joy from an extra hour of sleep, an idea originally suggested by Ben Franklin to preserve candles. But the benefit will last only a few days. Similarly, our kings and other rulers may insist they can offer us lasting rest and joy, but their impact on our lives is much smaller than they (and often we) imagine.  But…

Jesus said, as recorded in Matthew 11:28-30 – “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

May Jesus refresh us for the week and work ahead.  Only He can provide the rest and joy we truly desire and need.