1340. What part of you is dying, in order to just survive? It is this very part you must ignite to really come alive. ~Julie Parker

Go to the limits of your longing.
God speaks to each of us as he makes us,
then walks with us silently out of the night.

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These are the words we dimly hear:
You, sent out beyond your recall,
go to the limits of your longing.

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Embody me.
Flare up like a flame
and make big shadows I can move in.

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Let everything happen to you: beauty and terror.
Just keep going. No feeling is final.
Don’t let yourself lose me.

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Nearby is the country they call life.
You will know it by its seriousness.
Give me your hand…

~Ranier Maria Rilke

All my longings lie open before you, Lord; my sighing is not hidden from you. ~Psalm 38:9 ✝

**Images found on Pinterest

898. Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born. ~Anaïs Nin

In everyone’s life, at some time, our inner fire goes out.
It is then burst into flame by an encounter with another human being.
We should all be thankful for those people
who rekindle the inner spirit.
~Albert Schweitzer

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Each day holds a surprise. But only if we expect it can we see, hear, or feel it when it comes to us. Let’s not be afraid to receive each day’s surprise, whether it comes to us as sorrow or as joy It will open a new place in our hearts, a place where we can welcome new friends and celebrate more fully our shared humanity. ~Henri Nouwen

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. ~Psalm 34:18  ✝

**Rose image via Pinterest

763. In the end, there is no absence of irony… ~Winona LaDuke

Life is too ironic to understand.
It takes sadness to know
What happiness is,
Noise to appreciate silence,
And absence
To value presence!
~Author Unknown

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Not too long after I graduated and began working in a secretarial position, the grant that funded James’ job at the blood bank expired and so he had to be let go. After a few months he got another job, this time with EPA working in air pollution control here in our area, and thus we continued moving forward in paying off the debts incurred from his illness in our first year of marriage. On a side note, as a requirement for his job, James had to attend conferences on air quality and pollution controls. When one came up which required that he fly to North Carolina, I learned for the very first time that James was very much afraid of flying, and though I hadn’t thought of it for several years, it occurred me then that that probably meant the end of any chance of ever getting to Paris. But I told myself such is life and just let the dream fall by the wayside again. Soon after that I decided to stop wasting the education that my parents had worked hard to fund and went back to school one summer in order to get a third teaching field. In the fall of 1968 I finally got my first teaching job, and then 2001 I retired after having taught English and/or Spanish for 31 years. And go figure! I never did get the opportunity to teach French. And so whoooosh! The dream’s tiny, remaining flame is all but snuffed out one more time. However, all had not been lost. Life had gone on in spite of all the setbacks and dashed hopes. Over the course of our now nearly 53 years of marriage, I had given birth to our one and only child who was and is the delight and love of our lives. But wait! Are you ready for this one? She met her future husband while they were both working on their Ph.D in graduate school, and they married shortly after their graduations. So? One might ask. What’s the problem with that? Well… Where do suppose he took her on their honeymoon??? Why, where else but Paris of course and for a whole, entire week! To be continued…

You, Lord, are my lamp; the Lord turns my darkness into light. ~2 Samuel 22:29  ✝

**Image via Pinterest

645. And if tonight my soul may find her peace in sleep, and sink in good oblivion, and in the morning wake like a new-opened flower then I have been dipped again in God, new created. ~D. H. Lawrence

In slumber we fall into the deep, silent waters of consciousness, and then something, somewhere beneath the surface stirs us back to wakefulness. The same thing is happening now in my slumbering, wintry garden. A divine force or spark is stirring life back into seemingly lifelessness.

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A spark.  A flame.  A fire. A seed.  A plant.  A flower.  An egg.  An embryo.  A life. What is it that stirs matter and spirit?  What is it that stirs us?  What moves us?  What is it that makes life taste bitter or sweet upon the tongue?  What things do we feel that can’t quite be put into words?

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The following poem was written by Wallace Stevens. In it, his is the voice of questioning meant to refute religion/Christianity, and yet his images are the kinds of things that stir me in the opposite direction by rousing and impassioning my faith and belief in Christ. So it seems to me that Stevens, even in his attempt at denial, was himself somehow stirred by things in nature not wholly of this world, And I also have to wonder what exactly he thinks a soul is? Is not the soul that which connects mortal man to the Holy One who made us? Isn’t it the piece of God in us?

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Sunday Morning

What is divinity if it can come
Only in silent shadows and in dreams
Shall she not find in comforts of the sun,
In pungent fruit and bright, green wings, or else
In any balm or beauty of the earth,
Things to be cherished like the thought of heaven?
Divinity must live within herself:
Passions of rain, or moods in falling snow;
Grievings in loneliness, or unsubdued
Elations when the forest blooms; gusty
Emotions on wet roads on autumn nights;
All pleasures and all pains, remembering
The bough of summer and the winter branch,
These are the measures destined for her soul.
~Wallace Stevens

For God may speak in one way, or in another, yet man does not perceive it. In a dream, in a vision of the night, when deep sleep falls upon men, while slumbering on their beds, then He opens the ears of men, and seals their instruction. ~Job 33:14-16   ✝

634. Bright reds – scarlet, pillar-box red, crimson or cherry – are very cheerful. There is certainly a red for everyone. ~Christian Dior

If one says “Red” – the name of color –
and there are fifty people listening,
it can be expected that
there will be fifty reds in their minds.
And one can be sure that all these
reds will be very different.
~Josef Albers

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Red
Red is a fading sunset on the horizon.
It’s a burst of flame;
A spray of the fire leaping towards us.

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It’s the heat of the warm afternoon.
It’s a flickering flame of a tiny candle.
It’s the spark able to spread the wildfire of love.

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Red is the color of heat.
It’s full of passion.
It’s bold.
~Sunny Summers

For the word of the Lord is right and true; He is faithful in all He does. The Lord loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of His unfailing love. ~Psalm 33:4-5   ✝

**Images via Pinterest; collages by Natalie

624. When you take a flower in your hand and really look at it, it’s your world for a moment. ~Georgia O’Keeffe

I found I could say things with color
and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way –
things I had no words for.
~Georgia O’Keeffe

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What is orange?

Orange is a tiger lily,
A carrot,
A feather from a parrot.

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A flame,
The wildest color
You can name.

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Orange is a happy day
Saying good-bye in a sunset
That shocks the sky.

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Orange is brave
Orange is bold
It’s bittersweet and marigold.

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Orange is zip
Orange is dash
The brightest stripe in a Roman sash.

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Orange is an orange
Also a mango
Orange is the music of a tango.

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Orange is the fur
Of the fiery fox
The brightest crayon in the box.

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And in the fall
When leaves are turning
Orange is the smell of a bonfire burning.
~Mary O’Neill

For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. ~2 Timothy 1:6   ✝

**Images via Pinterest

600. There are two ways of spreading light: to be the candle or the mirror that reflects it. ~Edith Wharton

A
candle 
loses
nothing
by lighting
another candle.
~Erin Majors

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Light a candle in your soul,
And carry with you in the dark.
If you see a flame that’s lost its glow
Let yours supply the spark.
For a flame grows only brighter
When it gives to another of its light.

Believe in yourself in the depths of your being,
Nourish the talents your spirit is freeing.
Know in your heart when the going gets slow,
That your faith in yourself will continue to grow.
Don’t give up your dreams though others may have doubt,
It’s your life to live, you must delight in it throughout.
So learn from your errors, don’t dwell in the past,
And never withdraw from a world that’s vast.
Believe in yourself, find the best that is you,
Let your spirit prevail, steer a course that is true.

~Edited texts from Unknown Author

The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. ~John 1:5    ✝

**Image via Pinterest, Text added by Natalie
Once a blogging junkie, always a blogging it would seem!