Thought Provokers for Sunday, Feb. 19, 2017

resist not evildoer

These Thought Provokers may help you meditate the Gospel for this Sunday (Matthew 5:38-48)

If we could read the secret history of our enemies,
we should find in each man’s life
sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

* * * * * * * * * *

If I am even with my enemy, the debt is paid;
but if I forgive him, I oblige him for ever.

William Penn

* * * * * * * * * *

I choose my friends for their good looks,
my acquaintances for their good characters,
and my enemies for their intellects.
A man cannot be too careful in the choice of his enemies.

Oscar Wilde

* * * * * * * * * *

The true and noble way to kill a foe,
Is not to kill him. You, with kindness, may
So change him, that he shall cease to be so,
And then he’s slain.

Emile Chartier

* * * * * * * * * *

The Bible tells us to love our neighbors,
and also to love our enemies;
probably because they are generally the same people.

G.K. Chesterton

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Thought Provokers for Sunday, Feb. 12, 2017

jesus conflict among brethren

Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be,
since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be.

Thomas a Kempis

* * * * * * * * * *

Anger is quieted by a gentle word
just as fire is quenched by water.

Jean Pierre Camus

* * * * * * * * * *

People who fly into a rage
always make a bad landing.

Will Rogers

* * * * * * * * * *

All men know in their very earliest years that beside the good of their animal personality, there is another, a better a good in life, which is not only independent of the gratification of the appetites of the animal personality, but on the contrary, the greater the renunciation of the welfare of the animal personality the greater the good becomes….This feeling…is known to all. This feeling is love.

Count Leo Nikolaevich Tolstoy

* * * * * * * * * *

When Christ calls a man, He bids him come and die. It may be a death like that of the first disciples who had to leave home and work to follow Him, or it may be a death like Luther’s, who had to leave the monastery and go out into the world. But it is the same death every time- death in Jesus Christ, the death of the old man at His call. That is why the rich young man was so loath to follow Jesus, for the cost of following was the death of his will. In fact every command of Jesus is a call to die, with all our affections and lusts. But we do not want to die, and therefore Jesus Christ and His call are necessarily our death and our life.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

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Thought Provokers for Sunday, Feb. 5, 2017

candles 6628581

Church-goers are like coals in a fire.
When they cling together they keep the flame aglow;
when they separate, they die out.

Billy Graham

* * * * * * * * * *

One telling statistic reveals the fruit of two centuries of faithful mission work:
Of India’s 700 million people, only 2.7 percent call themselves Christian,
and yet Christians are responsible for more than eighteen percent
of the nation’s health care.

Philip Yancey, I Was Just Wondering

* * * * * * * * * *

Like the athletes in the old Athenian torch race of Pan,
let us not run so fast that we put out the Light!
For without God everything is darkness in human society.

Robert I. Gannon

* * * * * * * * * *

We are called to be not the honey of the world
but the salt of the earth.
Salt stings on an open wound,
but it also saves one from gangrene.

Donald Bloesch

* * * * * * * * * *

I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year,
“Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown,”
and he replied, “Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the hand of God.
That shall be to you a better light and safer than a known way.”

M.L. Hoskins, The Gate of the Year

* * * * * * * * * *

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Thought Provokers for Sunday, Jan. 29, 2017

Peacemakers blessed -01

We are rich in the things that perish, but poor in the things of the spirit.
We are rich in gadgets, but poor in faith.
We are rich in goods, but poor in grace.
We are rich in know-how, but poor in character.
We are rich in words, but poor in deeds.

Billy Graham

* * * * * * * * * *

God designed the human machine to run on Himself.
He Himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn,
or the food our spirits were designed to feed on.
There isn’t any other.

That’s why it’s no good asking God to make us happy in our own way
without bothering about religion.

C.S. Lewis, The Case for Christianity

* * * * * * * * * *

One discouraged person to another:
“What I need is a blessing that ISN’T in disguise.”

* * * * * * * * * *

Blessed to us is the night,
for it reveals the stars.

* * * * * * * * * *

There is no security in things.
In fact, things are deceptive:
they appear to be satisfying and lasting
when they are actually temporary
and unable to satisfy the deepest needs of life….
Certainly, God wants us to enjoy the blessings of life.
There is nothing spiritual about sitting morosely in a corner
and saying, “These things will not last anyway! Why enjoy them?”
God wants us to enjoy His good gifts,
just as we want our children to enjoy what we give them.
But He does not want us to depend on things–
He wants us to depend on Him.

Warren W. Wiersbe, Meet Yourself in the Parables

* * * * * * * * * *

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Thought Provokers for Sunday, Jan. 22, 2017

people in darkness great ligth

If you think you’re too small to have an impact.
try going to bed with a mosquito in the room.

Anita Roddick

* * * * * * * * * *

God is the master of the scenes;
we must not choose which part we shall act;
it concerns us only to be careful that we do it well.

Jeremy Taylor

* * * * * * * * * *

It is very significant that in every recorded instance,
the Apostles were busy at their daily work
when the Master called them:

Peter and Andrew were fishing.
James and John were mending their nets;
Matthew was sitting at the receipt of custom.
God never visits an idle or unserviceable life.

David Smith

* * * * * * * * * *

If I could give you information of my life,
it would be to show how a woman of very ordinary ability
has been led by God in strange and unaccustomed paths
to do in His service what He has done in her.

And if I could tell you all,
you would see how God has done all, and I nothing.
I have worked hard, very hard-that is all,
and I have never refused God anything.

Florence Nightingale,
founder of the nursing profession

* * * * * * * * * *

The right, practical divinity is this:
believe in Christ,
and do your duty in that state of life
to which God has called you.

Martin Luther

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Thought Provokers for the Gospel of Sunday, Jan. 15, 2015

Come And See

Read the Gospel (John 1:29-42) here.

God made Sun and Moon to distinguish seasons, and day and night,
and we cannot have the fruits of the earth but in their seasons:
But God hath made no decree to distinguish the seasons of His mercies….
In Heaven it is always Autumn,
his mercies are ever in their maturity.

John Donne

* * * * * * * * * *

God is the God of the humble, the miserable,
the oppressed, and the desperate,
and of those who are brought even to nothing;
and his nature is to give sight to the blind,
to comfort the broken-hearted,
to justify sinners,
to save the very desperate and damned.

Martin Luther

* * * * * * * * * *

Ultimately, this is what you go before God for:
You’ve had bad luck and good luck
and all you really want in the end is mercy.

Robert Frost

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The modern soul is not going to find peace
so long as he is locked up inside himself,
mulling around in the scum and sediment of his unconscious mind,
a prey of the unconscious forces
whose nature and existence he glorifies.

Fulton J. Sheen

* * * * * * * * * *

A great many people are trying to make peace,
but that has already been done.
God has not left it for us to do;
all we have to do is to enter into it.

Dwight L. Moody

* * * * * * * * * *

Go to our website: NewLifeAnglican.org

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Thought Provokers for Sunday, Jan. 8, 2016

jesus-baptism-300x225

You may read the Gospel for this Sunday here.

Baptism is a living, saving water
on account of the Word of God which is in it.

Martin Luther

* * * * * * * * * *

Baptism points back to the work of God,
and forward to the life of faith.

J.A. Motyer

* * * * * * * * * *

Baptism is the Church’s primary form of evangelization;
it is how the Church is built up.

Whenever the Church incorporates a new member into its body,
there is a fresh epiphany to the Church
of what Christ has done by dying and rising for it.

Baptism reminds us of what is means to be a priestly people.
The baptismal font ought to be as prominent as the pulpit;
both witness to the same reality,
the Savior who had a baptism that we might have life.

James F. White

* * * * * * * * * *

If a man says with Pascal, “Lord, I give You everything,”
and in a tone that really commits him,
his friends can expect or fear anything from him
save that he will turn his life into a farce.

Francois Mauriac

* * * * * * * * * *

Little things come daily, hourly, within our reach,
and they are not less calculated to set forward our growth in holiness
than are the greater occasions which occur but rarely.
Moreover, fidelity in trifles,
and an earnest seeking to please God in little matters,
are the test of real devotion and love.
Let our aim be to please our dear Lord perfectly in little things,
and to attain a spirit of childlike simplicity and dependence.

Jean Nicolas Grou

* * * * * * * * * *

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Thought Provokers for the week starting on Sunday, Jan 1, 2017

joseph-mary-jesus-to-egypt

You may read the Gospel (Matthew 2:13-23) and the other texts for that Sunday here.

An angel is a spiritual creature created by God without a body,
for the service of Christendom and of the Church.

Martin Luther

* * * * * * * * * *

There is a short play by Thornton Wilder called The Angel That Troubles the Waters. An infirm physician approaches the pool at Bethesda, where others had been healed, and waits for the waters to be troubled so that he might be made whole again. The angel who stirs the water appears and says,

“Stand back. Healing is not for you.
Without your wound, where would your power be?
…We ourselves, the very angels of God in heaven,
cannot persuade the wretched and blundering children of earth
as can one human being broken on the wheels of living.
In love’s service, only wounded soldiers will do.”

* * * * * * * * * *

Be sure of this:
there is no creature ever made by God who can set you free or help you;
only God can do it.
Run about as you will,
search high and low the whole world over,
you will never find the help you need anywhere except in God.
If the Lord chooses to use an instrument, man or angel, to achieve this, He can;
but He must do it and no one else.

Seek this help inside yourself, the depths of your soul;
stop running around, stop searching up and down the countryside;
be still, be calm, stay where you are, in Egypt, in darkness,
until the angel comes to call you.
Joseph was asleep when the angel called him.

John Tauler, German mystic

* * * * * * * * * *

God is the master of the scenes;
we must not choose which part we shall act;
it concerns us only to be careful that we do it well.

Jeremy Taylor

* * * * * * * * * *

Each individual has his own kind of living assigned to him by the Lord
as a sort of sentry post
so that he may not heedlessly wander throughout life.

John Calvin

* * * * * * * * * *

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Thought Provokers for Sunday, Dec. 25, 2016, Christmas Day

shepherds-joseph-mary-jesus

You may read the text of the Gospel, Luke 2:1-20, (and other texts) here.

The Son of man became man
to enable men to become the sons of God.

C.S. Lewis

* * * * * * * * * *

The place where the Saviour enters in looks rather like the stable of Bethlehem.
It is not beautiful, but quite ugly;
not at all cozy, but really frightening;
not at all decently human, but right beside the animals….

Down there Jesus Christ sets up quarters.
Even better, he has already done so!
Yes, praise be to God for this dark place, for this manger,
for this stable in our lives!
There we need him, and there he can use each one of us….
There he greets us.
What else can we do but return his greeting and bid him welcome?

Karl Barth

* * * * * * * * * *

If Christ is born a thousand times in Bethlehem and not in you,
then you are lost.

Angelus Silesius, 17th Century Christian,
in Cherubic Pilgrim

* * * * * * * * * *

The greatness of God was not cast off,
but the slightness of human nature was put on.

Thomas Aquinas

* * * * * * * * * *

The Incarnation is the most stupendous event
which ever can take place on earth;
and after it and henceforth,
I do not see how we can scruple at any miracle
on the mere ground of it being unlikely to happen.

John Henry Newman

* * * * * * * * * *

The Bible is a missionary book.
Jesus Christ is the Father’s missionary to a lost world.

Harold Lindsell

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Thought Provokers for Sunday, Dec. 18, 2016

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Read the Gospel and other readings for this Sunday here

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For though our Saviour’s Passion is over,
his Compassion is not.

William Penn

* * * * * * * * * *

An American clergyman once asked Mahatma Gandhi what caused him most concern. Gandhi replied, “The hardness of heart of the educated.”

* * * * * * * * * *

Compassion is the basis of all morality.

Arthur Schopenhauer

* * * * * * * * * *

We ought not to treat living creatures
like shoes or household belongings,
which when worn with use we throw away.

Plutarch

* * * * * * * * * *

Kindness has converted more sinners
than zeal, eloquence and learning.

Frederick W. Faber

* * * * * * * * * *

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