Tuesday, September 28, 2010

my favorite marriage quotes

"It is not your love that sustains the marriage, but from now on, the marriage that sustains your love." (Dietrich Bonhoeffer, writing to a young bride and groom from his prison cell in Nazi Germany in 1943)

"A good marriage is the union of two good forgivers."  (Ruth Bell Graham)

"I didn't marry you because you were perfect. I didn't even marry you because I loved you. I married you because you gave me a promise. That promise made up for your faults.  And the promise I gave you made up for mine. Two imperfect people got married and it was the promise that made the marriage.  And when our children were growing up, it wasn't a house that protected them; and it wasn't our love that protected them - it was that promise."   (Thornton Wilder, "The Skin of Our Teeth")

"What greater thing is there for two human souls than to feel that they are joined for life - to strengthen each other in all labor, to rest on each other in all sorrow, to minister to each other in all pain, to be one with each other in silent, unspeakable memories at the moment of the last parting." (George Elliott / aka Mary Anne Evans)

"Common courtesy plays a big role in happy marriages. People who are permanently married are polite to one another. They don't want to hurt one another's feelings, and they don't try to make the other one feel humiliated. People who are married for life are extremely kind to one another." (Frank Pittman, marriage therapist)   

"For most people, a life lived alone, with passing strangers or passing lovers, is incoherent and ultimately unbearable. Someone must be there to know what we have done for those we love." (Frank Pittman)
"Marriage isn't supposed to make you happy - it's supposed to make you married. A happy marriage is a marriage between two happy people."  (Frank Pittman)

"Why is it that people get married?
Because we need a witness to our lives.
There’s a billion people on the planet.
What does any one life really mean?
But in a marriage, you’re promising to care about everything…
The good things, the bad things, the terrible things, the mundane things,
All of it… all the time, every day.
You’re saying 'Your life will not go unnoticed because I will notice it.
Your life will not go unwitnessed - because I will be your witness.'”
(Wife in the movie, "Shall We Dance?" 2004)

"When there is love in a marriage, there is harmony in the home; when there is harmony in the home, there is contentment in the community; when there is contentment in the community, there is prosperity in the nation; when there is prosperity in the nation, there is peace in the world."  (Chinese proverb frequently quoted by David and Vera Mace)

"I was burned out from exhaustion, buried in the hail, poisoned in the bushes, blown out on the trail; hunted like a crocodile, ravaged in the corn, 'Come in,' she said, 'I'll give ya shelter from the storm.'" (Bob Dylan)

"I knew couples who’d been married almost forever – forty, fifty, sixty years. Seventy-two, in one case. They’d be tending each other’s illnesses, filling in each other’s faulty memories, dealing with the money troubles or the daughter’s suicide, or the grandson’s drug addiction. And I was beginning to suspect that it made no difference whether they’d married the right person. Finally, you’re just with who you’re with. You’ve signed on with her, put in a half century with her, grown to know her as well as you know yourself or even better, and she’s become the right person. Or the only person, might be more to the point. I wish someone had told me that earlier. I’d have hung on then; I swear I would.”  (Anne Tyler, "A Patchwork Planet")

William Morris wrote a poem called 'Love is Enough' and someone is said to have reviewed it briefly with the words 'It isn't.' . . . , To say this is not to belittle the natural loves but to indicate where their real glory lies. It is no disparagement to a garden to say that it will not fence and weed itself, nor prune its own fruit trees, nor roll and cut its own lawns. A garden is a good thing but that is not the sort of goodness it has. It will remain a garden, as distinct from a wilderness, only if someone does all these things to it." (C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves)

"You don't marry one person; you marry three:
the person you think they are,
the person they are, and
the person they are going to become
as a result of being married to you."
(Richard Needham)

"My wife uses fabric softener. I never knew what that stuff was for.  Then I noticed women coming up to me, sniffing, then saying under their breath, 'Married!' and walking away. Fabric Softeners are how our wives mark their territory. We can take off the ring, but it's hard to get that April fresh scent out of your clothes."  (Andy Rooney)

"Try praising your wife, even if it does frighten her at first." (Billy Sunday)

A friend recently told us about a twenty-fifth-anniversary party where the husband gave a toast and said, "The key to our success is very simple. Within minutes after every fight, one of us says, 'I'm sorry, Sally'."  (Cokie and Steve Roberts)

"If love is blind, why is lingerie so popular?"  (Unknown)

"A bride should pick her lingerie on whether or not it looks good on the bedpost."  (Pat Brewer)

"The grass looks greener on the other side. . . but it's Astroturf." (From the report, "Does Divorce Make People Happy?")

"No man is truly married until he understands every word his wife is NOT saying." (Unknown)

"When people tell me they've learned from experience, I tell them the trick is to learn from other people's experience."  (Warren Buffett)

"A good marriage is a contest of generosity."  (Diane Sawyer) 

"Choose your love, then love your choice." (Unknown)

"To keep your marriage brimming, with love in the wedding cup, whenever you're wrong, admit it; whenever you're right, shut up." (Ogden Nash)

"No road is long with good company." (Turkish proverb) 

"Writers say that love is concerned only with young people, and the excitement and glamor of romance end at the altar. How blind they are. The best romance is inside marriage; the finest love stories come after the wedding, not before." (Irving Stone)

"Love is seeking to act for the other person's highest good." (Jerry Cook)

A good motto for the bride and groom: "We are a work in progress with a lifetime contract." (Phyllis Koss)

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

real truth, real guilt, real history

Francis Schaeffer at heart was an evangelist.  Apologetics for him was not merely answering questions and objections, but addressing assumptions prior to asking for commitment to Christ.  Because most people view religious belief as a category of feeling, outside of any objective sense of truth or history, he said... 

"As we get ready to tell him God's answer to his need, we must make sure that he understands that we are talking to him about real truth, and not about something vaguely religious which seems to work psychologically.  We must make sure that he understands that we are talking about real guilt before God and that we are not offering him merely relief for his guilt feelings.  We must make sure that he understands that we are talking to him about history, and that the death of Jesus was not just an ideal or a symbol but a fact of space and time.  If we are talking to a man who would not understand the term 'space-time history' we can say to him, 'Do you believe that Jesus died in the sense that, if you had been there that day, you could have rubbed your finger on the cross and got a splinter in it?'  Until he understands the importance of these three things, he is not ready to become a Christian."    (--from The God Who Is There, pp 127-28)

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

the critique of doubt

"There is a need for what Polanyi calls the critique of doubt. When we undertake to doubt any statement, we do so on the basis of beliefs which–in the act of doubting–we do not doubt. I can only doubt the truth of a statement on the ground of other things–usually a great many things–which I believe to be true. It is impossible at the same time to doubt both the statement, and the beliefs on the basis of which the statement is doubted."  (Lesslie Newbigen, from The Gospel in a Pluralist Society)

[I've been reading about the role of assumptions and presuppositions in belief, and in apologetics.  I suppose I've been more of an evidentialist in the past but now I'm realizing how indebted I am to Francis Schaeffer's approach, and also the insights of Carl F. H. Henry (a "rational presuppositionalist"), on identifying and addressing -- and deconstructing if need be-- our unspoken assumptions.]  

Friday, September 17, 2010

like a cedar

"The righteous shall flourish like the palm tree: he shall grow like a cedar in Lebanon"   (Psalm 92:12)


These trees are not trained and pruned by man: palms and cedars are "trees of the LORD," and it is by His care that they flourish. Even so it is with the saints of the LORD: they are His own care. These trees are evergreen and are beautiful objects at all seasons of the year. Believers are not sometimes holy and sometimes ungodly: they stand in the beauty of the LORD under all weathers. Everywhere these trees are noteworthy: no one can gaze upon a landscape in which there are either palms or cedars without his attention being fixed upon these royal growths. The followers of Jesus are the observed of all observers: like a city set on a hill, they cannot be hid. The child of God flourishes like a palm tree, which pushes all its strength upward in one erect column without a single branch. It is a pillar with a glorious capital. It has no growth to the right or to the left but sends all its force heavenward and bears its fruit as near the sky as possible. LORD, fulfill this type in me. The cedar braves all storms and grows near the eternal snows, the LORD Himself filling it with a sap which keeps its heart warm and its bough strong. LORD, so let it be with me, I pray Thee. Amen.  

(C. H. Spurgeon, Faith's Checkbook)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

who or what we worship

"Put to death therefore what is earthly in you: sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry."  (Colossians 3:5 ESV)

“The objects of most of our desires are not evil. The problem is the way
they tend to grow, and the control they come to exercise over our
hearts... The problem with desire is that in sinners it very quickly morphs into demand...The expansion of desire doesn't end there. Demand quickly morphs into need. I now view the thing as essential to life...How often do we live with a sense of need for things we do not need at all? How does this change the way we view ourselves, our lives, others and God? How much envy, discouragement, bitterness and doubt of God comes from being convinced that we are being denied the things we need to live life as it was meant to be?”  (Paul David Tripp)

“The evil in our desires often lies not in what we want but that we want it too much.” (John Calvin)

“So how do you know where and what you worship? It's easy. You simply follow the trail of your time, your affection, your energy, your money, and your allegiance. At the end of that trail you'll find a throne; and whatever, or whomever, is on that throne is what's of highest value to you. On that throne is what you worship. Sure, not too many of us walk around saying, 'I worship my stuff. I worship my job. I worship this pleasure. I worship her. I worship my body. I worship me.' But the trail never lies. We may say we value this thing or that thing more than any other, but the volume of our actions speaks louder than our words. In the end, worship is more about what we do than what we say.” (Louie Giglio)

Friday, September 10, 2010

two quotes

"Observe what the Lord your God requires: Walk in His ways and keep His decrees and commands, His laws and requirements, as written in the Law of Moses, so that you may prosper in all you do and wherever you go."  (1 Kings 2:3)

"There is nothing in history to match the dire ends to which humanity can be led by following a political and social philosophy that consciously excludes God."  (Ravi Zacharias)