* pictured above: the town of Assisi, Italy —July 2013
I save quotes. In my phone. On my computer. Folders of them. Ever-growing, constantly adding.
And there are times when I need them. When all the world seems to be busting apart at the seams, all hell breaking loose. When my peace has run away like a dog terrified of the fireworks on the 4th of July.
I save quotes. But sometimes they save me.
I’d love to share some… saving quotes.
The Saint Francis Prayer:
Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy.
O, Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
it is in dying that we are born again to eternal life.
What’s really made a mess of the world? Grace? Forgiveness? Turning the other cheek? Or is it guilt, punishment, vengeance, & retribution? —Robert Farrar Capon
The Christian makes the choice that she would rather bear the burden of accusation than become the accuser. —Michael Distefano
Be soft. Do not let the world make you hard. Do not let the pain make you hate. Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness. Take pride that even though the rest of the world may disagree, you still believe it to be a beautiful place. —Kurt Vonnegut
We are all in the same boat, in a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. —G. K. Chesterton
We are called to confer, not conquer, to discuss, not destroy, to extend olive branches, not missile ranges. The new era reminds us that God is not mocked: we have to learn to be meek or there will be no earth to inherit. —William Sloane Coffin
We all belong to one another. That’s the way God made us. Christ died to keep us that way. Our sin is always that we put asunder what God has joined together. —William Sloane Coffin
If your fight is against people, you’re fight isn’t for God. —Keiren Mitchell
The kingdom of God is without coercion; we persuade by love, witness, spirit, reason, rhetoric, and, if need be, martyrdom… but never by force. —Brian Zahnd
As Christians, we’ve grown far too willing to accept the false narrative of “the other.” We’ve become far too willing to reduce real people into political talking points. We’ve grown far too comfortable with fear creeping into the ways we talk about those we disagree with. They will know us by our…? —Michael Palmer
You won’t find Jesus blaming the problems of the world on a certain group of people, be they Muslims, the LGBT community, or even corrupt politicians. You will find Jesus with his arms outstretched, inviting us into a loving embrace, calling us all to lay down the heavy burdens of fear, anger, judgment, and hatred—before they drag us to the hell of violence and war. —Matt Rose
To my fellow Christians: Either we become known for how unconditionally we love everyone (like Jesus did) or we deserve to be totally ignored. — Brian Zahnd
Love of enemies is the most ground-breaking and revolutionary of all of the teachings of Jesus, and also the least taught and practiced. —Derek Flood
“Love your enemies.” -Jesus
“Yes, but…” -The Devil
It’s time we untamed our Christianity and return to a wild, unbridled pursuit of the radical messiah who challenged us to live outside our comfort zones. Let us defy the status quo and begin to love with audacity. Let us resolve to hate no one, to condemn no one, to shame no one. Let us take up our crosses, set our eyes on the one who would rather die than live without us, and follow in his footsteps towards a kingdom already in the making. —Keith Giles
If you want to dream of a better world to live in, and you are a follower of Christ, it’s time to practice the love of your enemies. —Kenneth Tanner
With all beings and all things we shall be as relatives. —Sioux Indian
God already always loves everyone. Period. Full stop. May we too. —Brett Davis
Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness… and many people need it sorely on these accounts. —Mark Twain
The love of our neighbor in all its fullness simply means being able to say, “What are you going through?” —Simone Weil
Every person bears the divine image and so when anyone is injured the heart of God is wounded. —John Calvin
Gentleness is stronger than severity, water is stronger than rock, love is stronger than force. —H. Hesse
The tactic of nonviolence is a tactic of love that seeks the salvation and redemption of the opponent, not their… defeat. —Thomas Merton
It takes a great deal of courage to see the world in all its tainted glory, and still to love it. —Oscar Wilde
I have yet to see cynical, negative, fear-filled, angry, vengeance motivated mindsets create life or love for the common good. Faith, hope, and love remain as the only forces capable of long term healing. And the greatest of these forces is LOVE. —Randy Dean
The only thing that keeps the *world as it is* from being *the world as it could be* is our fear. Fear not. —Hugh Hollowell
Jesus shows us the real face of God, for whom power does not mean destruction but love, and for whom justice is not vengeance but mercy. —Pope Francis
Love will always win in the end, and if love has not yet won, it’s because it is not yet the end. —Rev. William J. Barber II