896. Music expresses that which cannot be said and on which it is impossible to be silent. ~Victor Hugo

Music by itself carries us beyond
words and thoughts into the realm of feeling.
~Jane E. Vennard

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It has been officially autumn for a couple of weeks now, but the temperature and unchanging leaves tell a different story. Theirs is a tale of summer, a summer not yet wanting to relinquish its throne. While begrudging that fact as I sat in a church meeting yesterday, a man quietly entered the room, sat down at a piano behind me, started playing a familiar tune, and as if by magic changed everything for the better. For almost immediately after he began playing, autumn’s glory flowed down his arms and oozed from his fingertips onto the piano’s keys. As he played on, the tinkling sounds of the musical notes emulated more and more the spectacle of autumn’s falling leaves. Enthralled I turned so I could watch him play and noticed he was not reading sheet music. Instead he was playing solely from memory and out of his heart. Thus as Vennard suggests, music  does remove the limitations of words and speaks to us of things bigger and grander than the mere scope of language can, so much so that it is indeed able to carry us into and from the “realm of feeling.” Not only that but when we quiet our bodies and minds and listen carefully, we are also able to discern, in the silence of music’s pauses, the holy footfalls of Yahweh’s abiding Presence in Creation.

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth, burst into jubilant song music. ~Psalm 98:4  ✝

**Image via Pinterest

873. What you are is Gods’ gift to you, what you become is your gift to God. ~Hans Urs von Balthasar

Screen shot 2015-09-16 at 3.21.39 PM He who is born with a silver spoon in his mouth
is generally considered a fortunate person,
but his good fortune is small compared to that
of the happy mortal who enters the world
with a passion for flowers in his soul.
~Celia Thaxter

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Don’t ask yourself what the world needs,
ask yourself what it is that makes you come alive.
And then go do it. Because what the world needs
is people who have come alive.
~Harold Whitman

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They come, I see, they conquer! Beauties like the ones in these photos have left me spellbound for as long as I can remember. So it is that I have been blessed with a fire-fanning renewal of the passion of which Thaxter speaks month after month, season after season, year after year for 7 decades now. And as the yearly succession of earth’s flowers has advanced over the years, something in my soul has in fact felt more alive. As a result in the pregnant pauses of my days, over and over again I’ve heard a voice imploring me to make something good out of that passion. M. C. Entyre said that “singers and musicians know the power of the pause, the rest, the soundless beat,” and I’ve come to realize that the spaces between our thoughts or words are dwelling places where things register and then move inward. When we linger in spaces of quietude, we open ourselves to the possibility of an epiphany–the sudden knowing, the flashes of clarity where Christ enters with revelation. In such moments the veil lifts and we are, as Wordsworth put it, “surprised by joy,” the inexpressible joy of coming alive.

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I love to think of nature as an
unlimited broadcasting station,
through which God speaks
to us every hour,
if we will only tune in.
~George Washington Carver

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The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes. ~Psalm 19:8  ✝

**Images via Pinterest, collages created by Natalie