Perception

Our uniqueness makes us special, makes perception valuable – but it can also make us lonely. This loneliness is different from being ‘alone’: You can be lonely even surrounded by people. The feeling I’m talking about stems from the sense that we can never fully share the truth of who we are. I experienced this acutely at an early age.“~ Amy Tan

Saying Goodbye: High School Edition

“What feels like the end is often the beginning.” -Unknown

With summer at an end and senior year baring its face, this last year of high school seems very scary and overwhelming. Deadlines for scholarships and college applications are rapidly approaching. Whether you know where you are going to college or not, the thought of college is a staggering realization. As the Class of 2020 we must put both feet forward. Don’t look back. Instead, look forward, to the path that you are forging.

The next 7 months will consist of many hellos and many goodbyes, tears shed and smiles given, but through it all none of us need to forget that this isn’t an ending to a long chapter, but rather a new beginning to an even longer chapter. Some of us try and stretch this time out, wishing it would never end. Others, can’t graduate fast enough. No matter where we are headed in life, our senior year in high school is part of what will define us for the rest of our lives. Whether we decide to go to college or to just jump right into adult life, we should all try and make the best of this final year of our childhood. “Tomorrow will be a new chapter in my life. This book is getting very interesting.” – Unknown

In the coming months, study hard for your tests, find a college that is right for you, look back on the good times, and make new memories. Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and do things you wouldn’t normally do. This is the last year before you are out in the real world, whether that’s college, or straight to work, so don’t forget to be yourself and go out with a bang.

 

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

 

Let Freedom Ring

“Patriotism is supporting your country all the time, and your government when it deserves it.” ~Mark Twain
“Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.” ~John 15:13
“If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a nation gone under.” ~Ronald Reagan

 

 

(I do not necessarily share the beliefs of all the people cited, but these are good quotes nonetheless.)

James 5:13-20

“Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord.
And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
Elijah was a human being, even as we are. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops.
My brothers and sisters, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring that person back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of their way will save them from death and cover over a multitude of sins.”

 

*New International Version

Into the Night

“I often think that the night is more alive and more richly colored than the day.” ~Vincent Van Gogh

When you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.”~Proverbs 3:24*

“Loneliness adds beauty to life. It puts a special burn on sunsets and makes night air smell better.” ~Henry Rollins

*New International Version

James 5:7-12

“Be patient, then, brothers and sisters, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop, patiently waiting for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near. Don’t grumble against one another, brothers and sisters, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door!
Brothers and sisters, as an example of patience in the face of suffering, take the prophets who spoke in the name of the Lord. As you know, we count as blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.
Above all, my brothers and sisters, do not swear—not by heaven or by earth or by anything else. All you need to say is a simple “Yes” or “No.” Otherwise you will be condemned.”

 

*New International Version

Sunny Words

Here are some quotes to brighten up your day.

“When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” ~John 8:12

“True friends are like bright sunflowers that never fade away, even over distance and time.” ~Marie Williams Johnstone

“I want to be like a sunflower; so that even on the darkest days, I will stand tall and find the sunlight.” ~Unknown

In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” ~Matthew 5:16

 

 

James 5:1-6

“Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming on you. Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days. Look! The wages you failed to pay the workers who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty. You have lived on earth in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter. You have condemned and murdered the innocent one, who was not opposing you.”

 

*New International Version