Monday, December 19, 2011

“Away, away, from men and towns,
To the wild wood and downs,
To the silent wilderness,
Where the soul need not repress
Its music.”

-Percy Bysshe Shelley  

angus & julia stone

Saturday, November 19, 2011


Written by: Ryan O'Neal, of the band Sleeping At Last
i’ve waited a hundred years.
but i’d wait a million more for you.
nothing prepared me for
what the privilege of being yours would do.

if i had only felt the warmth within your touch,
if i had only seen how you smile when you blush,
or how you curl your lip when you concentrate enough,
i would have known what i was living for all along.
what i’ve been living for.

your love is my turning page,
where only the sweetest words remain.
every kiss is a cursive line,
every touch is a redefining phrase.

i surrender who i’ve been for who you are,
for nothing makes me stronger than your fragile heart.
if i had only felt how it feels to be yours,
well, i would have known what I’ve been living for all along.
what i’ve been living for.

though we’re tethered to the story we must tell,
when i saw you, well, i knew we’d tell it well.
with a whisper, we will tame the vicious seas.
like a feather bringing kingdoms to their knees.

listen to Sleeping At Last here!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011



scattered & small.


all my days.
"If we let Him— for we can prevent Him, if we choose— He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess, a dazzling, radiant, immortal creature, pulsating all through with such energy and joy and wisdom and love as we cannot now imagine, a bright stainless mirror which reflects back to God perfectly (though, of course, on a smaller scale) his own boundless power and delight and goodness.  The process will be long and in parts very painful, but that is what we are in for.  Nothing less.  He meant what He said."

– C.S. Lewis

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

be here now



“Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.”
- John Muir

 "In God's wildness lies the hope of the world - the great fresh unblighted, unredeemed wilderness. The galling harness of civilization drops off, and wounds heal ere we are aware."
- John Muir

“As long as I live, I'll hear waterfalls and birds and winds sing. I'll interpret the rocks, learn the language of flood, storm, and the avalanche. I'll acquaint myself with the glaciers and wild gardens, and get as near the heart of the world as I can.”
- John Muir

Sunday, September 18, 2011

sit back,drink this in.

Gregory Alan Isakov - Drink All The Wine, 08/06/11 from Naomi on Vimeo.

without wounds

The lives of those fully engaged in the human struggle will be riddled with bullet holes. Whatever happened in the life of Jesus is in some way going to happen to us. Wounds are necessary. The soul has to be wounded as well as the body. To think that the natural and proper state is to be without wounds is an illusion. Those who wear bulletproof vests to protect themselves from failure, shipwreck, and heartbreak will never know what love is.

brennan manning 

Sunday, August 21, 2011


"And to us who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope that is set before us in the gospel, how unutterably sweet is the knowledge that our Heavenly Father knows us completely.  No talebearer can inform on us, no enemy can make an accusation stick; no forgotten skeleton can come tumbling out of some hidden closet to abash us and expose our past; no unsuspected weakness in our characters can come to light to turn God away from us, since He knew us utterly before we knew Him and called us to Himself in the full knowledge of everything that was against us."
-A.W. Tozer

Saturday, August 20, 2011

take heart

"Arise!  Wake up.  Put your face in the sunlight.  God's bright glory has risen for you.  The whole earth is wrapped in darkness, all people sunk in deep darkness; but God rises on you, his sunrise glory breaks over you.  Nations will come to your light, kings to your sunburst brightness.  Look up!  Look around!  Watch as they gather, watch as they approach you: Your sons coming from great distances, your daughters carried by their nannies.  When you see them coming you'll smile— big smiles!  Your heart will swell and, yes, burst!  All those people returning by sea for the reunion, a rich harvest of exiles gathered in from the nations!  And then streams of camel caravans as far as the eye can see, young camels of nomads in Midian and Ephah, pouring in from the south from Sheba, loaded with gold and frankincense, preaching the praises of God. What's that we see in the distance, a cloud on the horizon, like doves darkening the sky? It's ships from the distant islands, the famous Tarshish ships returning your children from faraway places. Loaded with riches— with silver and gold— and backed by the name of your God, showering you with splendor.  Foreigners will rebuild your walls, and their kings assist you in the conduct of worship.

When I was angry I hit you hard.  It's my desire now to be tender.  You'll know that I, God, am your Savior, your Redeemer.  I'll give you only the best!  Gold instead of bronze, silver instead of iron, bronze instead of wood, iron instead of stones.  I'll install Peace to run your country, make Righteousness your boss.  There'll be no more stories of crime in your land, no more robberies, no more vandalism.  You'll have no more need of the sun by day nor the brightness of the moon at night.  God will be your eternal light, your God will bathe you in splendor.  Your sun will never go down, your moon will never fade.  I will be your eternal light.  Your days of grieving are over.  All your people will live right and well, in permanent possession of the land.  They're the green shoot that I planted, planted with my own hands to display my glory.  I am God.  At the right time I'll make it happen."
-Isaiah 60 (The Message translation)

. . . what beautiful expressions of love & such pictures of hope God created in this passage!

Saturday, August 13, 2011


the stars shine brightly, as those falling leave them need

. . . and i live ever bravely,
because you live within reach

to have you is the heaven i'm left with dim and ethereal memory of

to live with you- living together- is the only dream my mind does compose

each glimpse of beauty calls to mind all the secrets.

Friday, August 12, 2011

the evenings

I love the evenings, passionless and fair, I love the evens,
Whether old manor-fronts their ray with golden fulgence leavens,
In numerous leafage bosomed close;
Whether the mist in reefs of fire extend its reaches sheer,
Or a hundred sunbeams splinter in an azure atmosphere
On cloudy archipelagos.

Oh, gaze ye on the firmament! a hundred clouds in motion,
Up-piled in the immense sublime beneath the winds' commotion,
Their unimagined shapes accord:
Under their waves at intervals flame a pale levin through,
As if some giant of the air amid the vapors drew
A sudden elemental sword.

The sun at bay with splendid thrusts still keeps the sullen fold;
And momently at distance sets, as a cupola of gold,
The thatched roof of a cot a-glance;
Or on the blurred horizon joins his battle with the haze;
Or pools the blooming fields about with inter-isolate blaze,
Great moveless meres of radiance.

- Victor Hugo, from "A Sunset"

Beautiful Mercy

There is no pit too deep
that Jesus cannot reach
there is no sorrow so strong
that will overtake his beloved one
No pit too deep
That Jesus cannot reach
There is no sorrow so strong
That will overtake his beloved one

And He's brought me to the wilderness
Where I will learn to sing
And He lets me know my barrenness
So I will learn to lean
Yes He's brought me to this wilderness
Where I will learn to sing
And He lets me know my barrenness
So I will learn to lean

He's so kind
Oh beautiful mercy
Do what you have to do
Jealous Lover
Do what you have to do (You know the best way)

Saturday, May 7, 2011


i'm home
from a trip down to southern TN. . .
picked my sister up from college for the summer.
what a fun few days away.
it was really good to spend time with Lydia;
good to be encouraged by her and to exchange life-lessons.
God has given me such a sweet family.
i do believe i listened to at least 20 hours worth of the ol' ipod. . .
how i LOVE being out on the road, soaking in this beautiful country!
i am refreshed. truly.

Thursday, April 28, 2011


Lord, teach me how you want me to live. Then I will follow your truth.
Give me a heart that doesn't want anything more than to worship you.
Psalm 86:11

Signs of a divided heart- restlessness, boredom, anger, depression, anxiety, lack of joy and peace- are everywhere you look. God longs for our whole heart to be fixed upon him. For all that he has done for us, he so deserves all of our love and devotion.

Something I am terribly guilty of- trying to control my own life and clean up my own messes. My pride and sense of self so often get in the way of surrendering my heart and life to the one who formed me! He doesn't want us to wait until we "have it all-together" before we come to him. He wants us as we are- unraveling, joyful, discouraged, hopeful, doubting, angry. He pleads with his children,

Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly.
Matthew 11:28

The threads of my life most often seem to me like a messy knot, but these are the very threads that bind me to God. Rather than trying to get all the cords untangled, I just need to believe that God has the other end of the threads and, if I allow him to, is weaving something that will be for my good and His glory.

 What Does An Undivided Heart Look Like?

It will show itself in a single-minded character. This is a person whose main goal, main purpose, and main passion is God. That means we live to please the one we love in everything we do. It does not mean we won't mess this up at times, it just means that He is our main love and we pursue Him.

The Lord said of David,"this is a man after my own heart."(Acts 13:22) David!? Really!? Didn't he commit adultery and then have the woman's husband killed when she came up pregnant? Didn't he allow his son to go unpunished when he raped his sister? THIS is a man after God's own heart? Yeah, he is. Why?

Read what David says over and over in the Psalms. He grieves over his sins because he knows He has hurt the God who loves him. Even though he has sinned greatly, he still seeks after God, loves Him and wants to please Him.

That is an undivided heart. It still messes up- sometimes on a big scale- but it repents over how it has affected the relationship with the God who loves so fiercely. And this heart gets back on track.

(taken from  here)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


"Listen  to your life. See it for the fathomless mystery that it is.
In the  boredom and pain of it no less than in the excitement and gladness:
touch, taste, smell your way to the holy and hidden heart of it because
in the last analysis all moments are key moments,
and life itself is grace."
Frederick Buechner
"By reading the scriptures I am so renewed that all nature seems renewed around me and with me. The sky seems to be a pure, a cooler blue, the trees a deeper green. The whole world is charged with the glory of God and I feel fire and music under my feet."
Thomas Merton

"The soul which has come into intimate contact with God in the silence of the prayer chamber is never out of conscious touch with the Father; the heart is always going out to Him in loving communion, and the moment the mind is released from the task upon which it is engaged, it returns as naturally to God as the bird does to its nest."
E.M. Bounds

“Pay mind to your own life, your own health, and wholeness.
A bleeding heart is of no help to anyone if it bleeds to death.”
  Frederick Buechner 

"It is good to renew ourselves, from time to time, by closely examining the state of our souls, as if we had never done it before; for nothing tends more to the full assurance of faith, than to keep ourselves by this means in humility, and the exercise of all good works."
John Wesley

Saturday, April 23, 2011

the Source

When we are securely rooted in personal intimacy with the Source of life, it will be possible to remain flexible but not relativistic, convinced without being rigid, willing to confront without being offensive, gentle and forgiving without being soft and true witnesses without being manipulative.

Thursday, April 21, 2011


"Sometimes I wake, and, lo! I have forgot,
And drifted out upon an ebbing sea!
My soul that was at rest now resteth not,
For I am with myself and not with thee;
Truth seems a blind moon in a glaring morn,
Where nothing is but sick-heart vanity:
Oh, thou who knowest! save thy child forlorn.

Thy fishes breathe but where thy waters roll;
Thy birds fly but within thy airy sea;
My soul breathes only in thy infinite soul;
I breathe, I think, I love, I live but thee.
Oh breathe, oh think,--O Love, live into me;
Unworthy is my life till all divine,
Till thou see in me only what is thine.

When I no more can stir my soul to move,
And life is but the ashes of a fire;
When I can but remember that my heart
Once used to live and love, long and aspire,
Oh, be thou then the first, the one thou art;
Be thou the calling, before all answering love,
And in me wake hope, fear, boundless desire.
-The Diary of An Old Soul, George MacDonald

"We are desire. It is the essence of the human soul, the secret of our existence. Absolutely nothing of human greatness is ever accomplished without it. Not a symphony has been written, a mountain climbed, an injustice fought, or a love sustained apart from desire. Desire fuels our search for the life we prize. Our desire, if we will listen to it, will save us from committing soul-suicide, the sacrifice of our hearts on the altar of 'getting by.' The same old thing is not enough. It never will be."
-Desire, John Eldredge

"Wilt thou suddenly enshroud thee,
Who this moment wert so nigh?
Heavy rising masses cloud thee,
Thou art hidden from mine eye.
Yet my sadness thou well knowest,
Gleaming sweetly as a star!
That I'm loved, 'tis thou that showest,
Though my loved one may be far.
Upward mount then! clearer, milder,
Robed in splendour far more bright!
Though my heart with grief throbs wilder,
Fraught with rapture is the night!"
-To the Rising Full Moon, Goethe

"We are made in the image of God; we carry within us the desire for our true life of intimacy and adventure. To say we want less than that is to lie."
-Desire, John Eldredge

"Yes: I am a dreamer. For a dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world."
-Oscar Wilde

"The sweetest thing in all my life has been the longing — to reach the mountain, to find the place where all the beauty came from — my country,
the place where I ought to have been born."

"Indeed, if we will listen, a Sacred Romance calls to us through our heart every moment of our lives. It whispers to us on the wind, invites us through the laughter of good friends, reaches out to us through the touch of someone we love. We've heard it in our favorite music, sensed it in the birth of our first child, been drawn to it while watching the shimmer of the sunset on the ocean. The Romance is even present in times of great personal suffering: the illness of a child, the loss of a marriage, the death of a friend.
Something calls to us through experiences like these and rouses in us an inconsolable longing deep within our heart, wakening in us a yearning for intimacy, beauty, adventure.

This longing is the most powerful part of any human personality. It fuels our search for meaning, for wholeness, for the sense of being truly alive. However we may describe this deep desire, it is the most important thing about us, our heart of hearts, the passion of our life. And the voice that calls to us in this place is none other than the voice of God."
-The Sacred Romance, Brent Curtis & John Eldredge

Friday, April 8, 2011

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?
- Mary Oliver
Very early on, I knew that the only object in life was to grow.
-Margaret Fuller

Each day, and the living of it, has to be a conscious creation in which discipline and order are relieved with some play and pure foolishness.
-May Sarton

‘The angels,’ he said, ‘have no senses; their experience is purely intellectual and spiritual. That is why we know something about God which they don’t. There are particular aspects of His love and joy which can be communicated to a created being only by sensuous experience. Something of God which the Seraphim can never quite understand flows into us from the blue of the sky, the taste of honey, the delicious embrace of water whether cold or hot, and even from sleep itself.
-C. S. Lewis

Pursue some path, however narrow and crooked, in which you can walk with love and reverence.
- Henry David Thoreau 
Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.
- Mark Twain

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

some haunting quality. . .

An enchanted life has many moments when the heart is overwhelmed with beauty and the imagination is electrified by some haunting quality in the world or by a spirit or voice speaking from deep within a thing, a place, or a person.
- Thomas Moore

with an ear close

Big Black Car - Gregory Alan Isakov from Todd Roeth on Vimeo.

you were a phonograph, i was a kid
i sat with an ear close, just listening
i was there when the rain tapped her way down you face
you were a miracle…i was just holdin your space

well time has a way of throwing it all in your face
the past, she is haunted, the future is laced
heartbreak, ya know, drives a big black car
swear i was in the back seat, just minding my own

and through the glass, the corn crows come like rain
they won’t stay, they won’t stay
for too long now

this could be all that we know..
of love and all.

well you were a dancer, i was a rag
the song in my head, well was all that i had
hope was a letter i never could send
love was a country we couldn’t defend.

and through the carnival we watch them go round and round
all we knew of home was just a sunset and some clowns

well you were a magazine, i was a plane jane
just walking the sidewalks all covered in rain
love to just get into one of your stories
just me and all of my plane jane glory

the longing

The sweetest thing in all my life has been the longing— to reach the mountain, to find the place where all the beauty came from— my country, the place where I ought to have been born.

Friday, March 18, 2011


"Thirsty hearts are those whose longings have been wakened by the touch of God within them."
-A.W. Tozer

"Romance is the deepest thing in life, romance is deeper even than reality."
-G.K. Chesterton

"To want is to suffer; the word passion means to suffer."
-John Eldredge

"We wake, if ever we wake at all, to mystery."
-Annie Dillard

that something

"Even in your hobbies, has there not always been some secret attraction which the others are curiously ignorant of- something not to be identified with, but always on the verge of breaking through; the smell of cut wood in the workshop or the clap-clap of water against the boat's side? Are not all lifelong friendships born at the moment when at last you meet another human being who has some inkling  (but faint and uncertain even in the best) of that something which you were born desiring, and which, beneath the flux of other desires and in all the momentary silences between the louder passions, night and day, year by year, from childhood to old age, you are looking for, watching for, listening for? You have never had it. All the things that have ever deeply possessed your soul have been but hints of it- tantalizing glimpses, promises never quite fulfilled, echoes that died away just as they caught your ear. But if it should really become manifest- if there ever came an echo that did not die away but swelled into the sound itself- you would know it.

Beyond all possibility of doubt you would say, 'Here at last is the thing I was made for.' We cannot tell each other about it. It is the secret signature of each soul, the incommunicable and unappeasable want, the thing we desired before we met our wives or made our friends or chose our work, and which we shall still desire on our deathbeds, when the mind no longer knows wife or friend or work. While we are, this is. If we lose this, we lose all."

-C.S. Lewis, in The Problem of Pain

Friday, March 4, 2011

this longing for home

"In order to keep us from becoming too attached to earth, God allows us to feel a significant amount of discontent and dissatisfaction– longings that will never be fulfilled on this side of eternity. We’re not completely happy here because we’re not supposed to be. Earth is not our final home; we were created for something much better. A fish would never be happy living on land, because it was made for water. And eagle could never feel satisfied if it wasn’t allowed to fly. You will never feel completely satisfied on earth, because you were made for more. You will have happy moments here, but nothing compared with what God has planned for you."
-Rick Warren

"Indeed, if we consider the unblushing promises of reward and the staggering nature of the rewards promised in the Gospels, it would seem that our Lord finds our desires, not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased."
-C.S. Lewis


Give up your self, and you will find your real self. Lose your life and you will save it. Submit to death, death of your ambitions and favourite wishes every day and death of your whole body in the end: submit with every fibre of your being, and you will find eternal life. Keep back nothing. Nothing that you have not given away will ever be really yours. Nothing in you that has not died will ever be raised from the dead. Look for yourself, and you will find in the long run only hatred, loneliness, despair, rage, ruin, and decay. But look for Christ and you will find Him, and with Him everything else thrown in.
– C.S. Lewis

The Christian way is different: harder, and easier. Christ says, “Give me ALL. I don’t want so much of your time and so much of your money and so much of your work: I want YOU. I have not come to torment your natural self, but to kill it. No half-measures are any good. I don’t want to cut off a branch here and a branch there, I want to have the whole tree down. I don’t want to drill the tooth, or crown it, or stop it, but to have it out. Hand over the whole natural self, all the desires which you think innocent as well as the ones you think wicked – the whole outfit. I will give you a new self instead. In fact, I will give you Myself: My own will shall become yours.”

It is like that here. The terrible thing, the almost impossible thing, is to hand over your whole self – all your wishes and precautions – to Christ. But it is far easier than what we are all trying to do instead. For what we are trying to do is to remain what we call “ourselves,” to keep personal happiness as our great aim in life, and yet at the same time be “good.” We are all trying to let our mind and heart go their own way-centered on money or pleasure or ambition-and hoping, in spite of this, to behave honestly and chastely and humbly. And that is exactly what Christ warned us you could not do. As He said, a thistle cannot produce figs. If I am a field that contains nothing but grass-seed, I cannot produce wheat. Cutting the grass may keep it short: but I shall still produce grass and no wheat. If I want to produce wheat, the change must go deeper than the surface. I must be ploughed up and re-sown.
-Mere Christianity, by C.S. Lewis

Sunday, February 27, 2011


 We each have a dream, a vision of life that corresponds to our convictions, embodies our uniqueness, and expresses what is life-giving within us. Whether altruistic or ignoble, the dream gives definition to our lives, influences the decisions we make, the steps we take, the words we speak. Daily we make choices that that are either consistent with or contrary to our vision. A life of integrity is born of fidelity to the dream.
- Brennan Manning, The Ragamuffin Gospel

J.M.W. Clarke plays Chopin's Raindrops Prelude Op.28 No.15 in D-flat


Thursday, February 24, 2011

A Room Called Remember, Frederick Buechner

"The time is ripe for looking back over the day, the week, the year, and trying to figure out where we have come from and where we are going to, for sifting through the things we have done and the things we have left undone for a clue to who we are and who, for better or worse, we are becoming. But again and again we avoid the long thoughts….We cling to the present out of wariness of the past. And why not, after all? We get confused. We need such escape as we can find. But there is a deeper need yet, I think, and that is the need—not all the time, surely, but from time to time—to enter that still room within us all where the past lives on as a part of the present, where the dead are alive again, where we are most alive ourselves to turnings and to where our journeys have brought us. The name of the room is Remember—the room where with patience, with charity, with quietness of heart, we remember consciously to remember the lives we have lived."


Monday, February 21, 2011

a thin wisp

It's a living book, this life; it folds out in a million settings, cast with a billion beautiful characters, and it is almost over for you. It doesn't matter how old you are; it is coming to a close quickly, and soon the credits will roll and all your friends will fold out of your funeral and drive back to their homes in cold and still and silence. And they will make a fire and pour some wine and think about how you once were . . . and feel a kind of sickness at the idea you never again will be.

So soon you will be in that part of the book where you are holding the bulk of the pages in your left hand, and only a thin wisp of the story in your right. You will know by the page count, not by the narrative, that the Author is wrapping things up. You begin to mourn its ending, and want to pace yourself slowly toward its closure, knowing the last lines will speak of something beautiful, of the end of something long and earned, and you hope the thing closes out like last breaths, like whispers about how much and who the characters have come to love, and how authentic the sentiments feel when they have earned a hundred pages of qualification.

And so my prayer is that your story will have involved some leaving and some coming home, some summer and some winter, some roses blooming out like children in a play. My hope is your story will be about changing, about getting something beautiful born inside of you, about learning to love a woman or a man, about learning to love a child, about moving yourself around water, around mountains, around friends, about learning to love others more than we love ourselves, about learning oneness as a way of understanding God. We get one story, you and I, and one story alone. God has established the elements, the setting and the climax and the resolution. It would be a crime not to venture out, wouldn't it?

— Donald Miller, Through Painted Deserts:
Light, God, and Beauty on the Open Road

God of surprises

Whitney Balliett authored a marvelous book on jazz titled The Sound of Surprise. In it, he talks about the unpredictability of jazz. With jazz, the listener never knows what's coming next—the rhythms, the harmonies, the improvs—and this unpredictability makes it exciting. Jazz always seems to surprise us.

So it is with life and work. The only certainty is change, and change always comes as a surprise. We may be able to predict that change is coming, but we can't predict the details of its unfolding. The good surprises that God sends are often commonplace and ordinary. Unfortunately, we don't allow them to surprise us. Instead, we live in dread of the bad surprises. We want to anticipate them somehow, to be one step ahead, to be in control.
Of course, it is wise to prepare ourselves for the bad surprises in life, but we shouldn't overlook God's hand in every surprise. And we must be careful not to let our expectations get in the way. Much of the joy in our lives will be determined by how we react, and our reactions can make the difference between a life of joy and a life of fearful dread.

Remember the story of Paul and Silas sitting in jail one night? Perhaps both men were tempted to give up, go to sleep, and forget about the bad surprise of jail. Instead, Paul and Silas turned God's surprise into singing. That's when the night really got exciting. Jail doors opened, a guard almost killed himself, and a community reached a spiritual turning point. What might have been a night of despair turned into a night of wonderful surprises (Acts 16).
Unfortunately, by our very nature, we tend to face life with one eye looking over our shoulder. We all experience betrayal at some point in our lives. We all learn that bad surprises can be dangerous.

How do we guard against the bad surprises without becoming slaves to fear? How do we continue to recognize and appreciate God's surprises in the commonplace? Most people want to think in terms of complex formulas and rules. In reality, it's really a simple formula. Our joy starts with faith and ends with thanksgiving. You see, we need a certain amount of faith to wake up to the good surprises of God. Cultivate alertness. Jesus kept telling his disciples, "Watch!" Pay attention! See all the good stuff! Gratitude requires faith, and faith produces thankfulness. Ingratitude is every day's atheism; God ignored is God denied.

When we live with gratitude—and an adequate humility—we are constantly surrounded by awe. A lot of the awe and wonder in life comes from looking for surprises. But surprises to us are never surprises to God. Christ's resurrection is the Great Surprise. That's why:
"All things work together for good to them who love God"
(Rom. 8:28).

-Howard Butt, Jr.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

something waits beneath

"I do an awful lot of thinking and dreaming about things in the past and the future- the timelessness of the rocks and the hills- all the people who have existed there. I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape- the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn't show." 
Andrew Wyeth














"Winter is an etching,

spring a watercolor,

summer an oil painting,

and autumn a mosaic of them all."

Stanley Horowitz

Monday, February 7, 2011


one of my favorite zinfandels
is Bogle Winery's... and they do one of the coolest things!
on each of their corks is a unique quote:

"He who loves not wine, women and song remains a fool his whole life long."
Martin Luther

"In water one sees one's own face;
But in wine one beholds the heart of another."
French proverb

"What contemptible scoundrel stole the cork from my lunch?"
W.C. Fields

"Over the wine-dark sea."
Homer, Iliad, I. 350

"Wine is bottled poetry."
Robert Louis Stevenson


Head-trained and dry farmed vines continue to be the source for Bogle’s Old Vine Zinfandel. These gnarly old vines produce concentrated fruit of unsurpassed quality and intensity. This full-bodied vintage shows itself with rich black raspberry notes that round out in the mouth, accompanied by the scents of summer fruit jam bubbling on the stove. Juniper berry and cinnamon stick join the spiciness of red and black peppercorns as they integrate with the supple fruit and lead toward the finish. Toasty oak and cloves are the perfect finishing touch.