Personal reflections, comments about things I've been doing, etc.

Favorite Religious Quotes?

Donald Trump’s non-answer to the question about his favorite Bible verse has generated a lot of interesting discussions online. It made me think of a verse that has been getting a lot of discussion online recently, Matthew 4:9

"All this I will give you," he said, "if you will bow down and worship me."’

Somehow, this seems like a quote that captures Donald Trump to a T. Of course, those who have been paying attention to the discussion about Matthew 4:9 may find this all the more apt. If we read this verse in context, we have:

Again, the devil took Him to a very high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory; and he said to Him, "All these things I will give You, if You fall down and worship me." Then Jesus said to him, "Go, Satan! For it is written, 'YOU SHALL WORSHIP THE LORD YOUR GOD, AND SERVE HIM ONLY.'"

So, it made me think, what if someone had asked me that on the campaign trail. Psalm 19:14 comes to my mind:

May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart
be pleasing in your sight,
Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.

These are words I wish more politicians would pray. Other verses that come to my mind are John 1:1

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

John 3:6

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Or even James 1:5

If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.

Of course, all of this is focused on the Judeo-Christian tradition. Some of my friends are Muslim and often quote the Quran. I’m not sure what they would say, or for that matter, what favorite religious quotes from other traditions would be.

What are yours?

A Missed Day

Every day this year, I’ve written something for the blog and posted it. That is, until Thursday. I thought I had posted something Thursday morning, but apparently I didn’t. I spent time picking beach plums. We went to Coast Guard Beach and watched seals. We stopped for fried seafood. We kayaked in a kettle pond. We drove around the cape for a little while. We had a fire and roasted marshmallows. But, in the end, I did not write.

Today was a travelling day. I picked more beach plums. We had one last swim on the cape before heading home. We stopped and saw the new goats at Locket’s Meadow. We visited with Papa and Nana, and now, it is late, and I’m writing a quick post before heading off to bed.

I did do some important writing on Thursday, and I have quite a bit more that I need to write. Perhaps tomorrow I can put up a couple posts and catch up.

Sunday on the Cape

It is Sunday evening on Cape Cod. It has been foggy today, but we went to the beach anyway. I swam a bit, walked on the beach, collected stones and built small cairns with them. In the morning, I went to St. Mary’s of the Harbor in Provincetown.

I read a bit more of Michael Cunningham’s Land’s End, and did a little of my own writing. I have a lot to write. I slept for a while. Now, my stomach is bothering me and I have a sore throat. I hope it is just a passing thing.

Isaac Was Here, Too.

The evening’s oppressive heat and humidity
finally broke in the middle of the night
in a fierce storm
leaving the morning
cooler, yet still damp.

On the beach
we wrote
“Isaac was here”
in the sand
as we looked out
over a great sea of grief
to our friends
remembering their son
in London.

In the sand was a leaf of dune grass
looking like a trampled palm leaf
on the streets of Jerusalem
towards the end
of Holy Week.

Near the words
were tiny fish
washed a shore
by the storm
that couldn’t be saved.

The waves will erase our words,
but not the memory
Isaac was here, too.

Leaving on Vacation

It is warm and sticky as a light rain falls in Connecticut. For the past few hours, I’ve been cleaning the car and packing for our trip to Cape Cod. All of the usual issues arise. I always worry that we are taking too much stuff, but also, forgetting something. I get frustrated at how much junk needs to be cleaned out of the car first. I worry about keeping the line of sight out of the back window clear and about making sure the kayaks are firmly secured. Kim worries about the pets. Have you seen the kitten?

Eventually, the car is packed, we have showered and are almost ready to go. But first, I need to take a few moments to gather my thoughts. There is so much writing I need to get done. Website updates for one organization, meeting minutes for another. I need to write a couple more reviews of the Fringe festival, as well as do some personal writing for my own development. There are various deadlines to meet, even during vacation.

I take a glance at Facebook. A six year old child was killed in a traffic accident less than three miles from our house. A friend across the ocean is burying her son today. There is the litany of prayer requests in various Facebook groups. Yesterday was the Feast of St. Benedict. The Epistle appointed for Sunday starts off “Be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his power. Put on the whole armor of God”.

I hold all of this in my heart as I send positive thoughts to those who are suffering, and then get in the car.

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