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Truth, Love, Beauty and all things Virtuous

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Wandering East of Eden

bryce-canyon-770840-printOne of the great processes you go through in life is to discover yourself, to find those gifts and capacities God has given you. He has given you great talents, the smallest part of which you have just begun to utilize. Trust the Lord to assist you in unlocking the door to those gifts. Some of us have created imaginary limits in our minds. There is literally a genius locked up inside each of us. Don’t ever let anyone convince you otherwise”-Gene R. Cook

The Only Way I Know: Excerpts from Cal Ripken on His Father

…Some people will never understand why I go about things the way I do, and that’s okay. But I’ll keep going on doing things the same way until it’s proven there’s a better way….And the person who taught me the most about it, and about life, is the former Orioles coach and manager—my dad, Cal Ripken Sr….

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My father by nature was a hard-working man….In the winters back home in Aberdeen, Maryland, Dad worked as hard as in summer. Even now there’s not much money in minor-league baseball, and there was less when we were growing up. He managed a pharmacy, drove a delivery truck, worked at a local hardware store and lumberyard. He was out the door at dawn and then fell asleep on the couch after supper almost every night, dog-tired….

My father had his mottos and pronouncements. He’d tell his baseball players, “It’s like a bank, men. You can’t take more out than you put in.”

Another favorite saying—“Do two million little things right, and the big things take care of themselves”….

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Senior was inducted into the Orioles’ Hall of Fame in 1996 season. At the banquet he was funny, direct, and foursquare in his remarks. In conclusion, he said he accepted the honor on behalf of all the equally dedicated men he had worked with in the minor leagues for all those years.

Then it was my turn. It was difficult. I wasn’t certain I could say what I wanted about my father, and what he means to me. So I told a little story about my two children, Rachel, six at the time, and Ryan, then three. They’d been bickering for weeks and I explained how one day I heard Rachel taunt Ryan, “You’re just trying to be like Daddy.”

 After a few moments of indecision, I asked Rachel, “What’s wrong with trying to be like Dad?”

When I finished telling the story, I looked at my father and added, “That’s what I’ve always tried to do.”

Excerpt taken from Chicken Soup for the  Baseball Fan’s Soul

 

Colin Powell’s Response to the Archbishop of Canterbury

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“…And I don’t have to think I anything to be ashamed of or apologize for with respect to the what America has done for the world. We have gone forth from our shores repeatedly over the last hundred years and we’ve done this as recently as the last year in Afghanistan and put wonderful young men and women at risk, many of whom have lost their lives, and we have asked for nothing except for ground to bury them in, and otherwise we have returned home to seek our own, you know, to seek our own lives in peace, to live our own lives in peace. But there comes a time when soft power or talking with evil will not work, where, unfortunately, hard power is the only thing that works.”–Colin Powell

 

Hope of Christ vs. The Hopelessness of Macbeth

cameras-kodak-57-swscan03105-copy“I’m certain there are lots of problems we could all list….Whatever the list, it’s bound to be long when we add up all the dumb things we’ve done. And my greatest fear is that you will not believe in other chances…, that on some days you will not believe in any future at all….If we cannot believe in the compassion of Christ and His redemptive love, then I think we in our own way are as hopeless as Macbeth and our view of life just as depressing.”-Elder Jeffrey R. Holland

 

Happy Days

Happy DaysVery little that is positive is solitary. When was the last time you laughed uproariously? The last time you felt indescribable joy? The last time you sensed profound meaning and purpose? The last time you felt enormously proud of an accomplishment? Even without knowing the particulars of these high points of your life, I know their form: all of them took place around other people.-Dr. Martin Seligman

It Will All Work Out

Parenthood Not Something Purchased

“Parenthood is simply not another experience that you purchase, like a vacation and children are not—not yet—products to be built to your specification. A model of parenthood dominated by the mandate to satisfy the parents’ needs rather than those of the children will be forever defective.”-Kevin Williamson

The Directions Our Desires Take

A kiss

“C.S. Lewis understood that it is the direction our desires take and not the desires themselves that are the problem. Rightly ordered, human longings point us to answers about life and its meaning. Ultimately, they point us to God, the only source for knowing our true selves. Our capacity for desire is good.

The mistake many make about desires, Lewis thought, is confusing means for ends. We all know how pursuing desire as an end in and of itself results in a treadmill of personal disillusionment and relational carnage. Fulfillment remains perpetually just beyond reach for those who treat pleasure as the destination, rather than as joys of the journey.”-John Stonestreet

The Devil’s Current Bag of Tricks: Reducing Our Humanity

Evil businessman“…We know that Jesus Christ has restored, and even elevated, humanity’s dignity, giving us each the power to become God’s sons and daughters. But, again, the devil is trying to convince people that they are not who they are.

Instead of tempting us to reject God outright, the devil is satisfied with convincing us that we are nothing special in God’s eyes: human beings are nothing more than highly evolved organisms, different in degree, but not in kind, from other organisms. Like all other organisms, human behavior is a matter of biology and environment. There is no spiritual dimension, but only brain chemistry. There is no free will, but only evolutionary drives. We are not persons, but members of a class, an ethnicity, a race, a sexual orientation, and on and on.

Number 666

The secular progressive obsession with “equality” of outcomes reflects this denial of personhood, in the same way it justifies the extermination of millions of pre-born babies in the name of population control and social “responsibility.” Human beings are treated as livestock to be managed, rather than persons to be cherished.

The zeitgeist pays lip service to the idea of a human spirit, but, in practice, that “spirit” boils down to consumptive self-assertion, self-serving emotion, and empty sentimentality. The permitted expressions of “freedom” are actually enslavements to bodily and psychotropic pleasures. Such “freedom,” not religion, is the “opium of the masses.”-Michael Quinlan

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