Edward Waters         Bard of the Grey Wind

Aphorisms (and such) of Edward Waters

      

        also known as

PP2Ws
(Personal Pretensions to Wisdom)
     
  or,

'Things Which Occur to Me When I'm About Other Business'

(Copyright © 2002, 2014)


Featured Selections (rotating) :

'No love we feel, no sacrifice we make for another, can ever of itself achieve even the feeblest shadow of the Love which was poured out for us. Yet there are times when His Spirit somehow takes our love, our labours, our sacrifices, our broken hearts -- as hopelessly inadequate as we know them to be -- and makes them His own. And then, indeed, there is hope.'


 *   *    *


'There are times when you honestly cannot say with certainty whether what you are doing is best described as prayer, meditation, a cry for Help, brooding, whining, rationalizing, or just talking too much and listening too little. And then it occurs to you that perhaps this is why all God’s dealings with us involve a hefty measure of grace.'



'The chief difference between a liberal and a conservative is often merely which parts of the Bible they ignore.'

'Some say it takes more than love to make a marriage.  They are wrong.  It does, however, require far more than what many mean by "love".'

'As acrobats who walk the high-wire know well, balance is not something you merely achieve; it is something you must maintain.'

'Beauty is as love sees.'

'Many err without learning. None learn without erring.'

'Experience may well be the best teacher, but it is not always the truest counsellor.'

'Every ocean has its froth.'

'Joy is the fleeting glimpse we gain when some soft breath of grace disturbs the veil between our knowledge and our hope.'

'Cynicism is often just another form of gullibility.'

'One of the extraordinary things about God's grace is how, without actually changing the rules, He does meet us where we are now. He is not keen on being "tested" as an indication of our distrust, but He will be patient with tentative faith when it springs from a desire to trust. He doesn't expect someone who has fallen through earlier frozen ponds to leap now onto His without some initial caution. He's willing to allow our courage, faith, and confidence to grow in process.'                                               [from personal correspondence]

'Half of defeat is in opportunity.'

'People talk of the world's changes. But the truth is that the world never changes; it merely finds new and previously unimaginable ways of staying the same.'

'All of Satan's resources are stolen goods.'

'Hope is at once the vulnerability to disappointment and the motivation to persevere.'

'I would rather wait in God's service than be busy in the name of God's service.'

'Change can be growth. Change unchecked is a malignant growth.'

'Sometimes you have to found what you cannot find.'

'By far, more terrifying than the wicked are the innocent; for the wicked we understand.'

'My first choice would be that good things happen to me as often as possible. Still, I would rather live in a world where everything good happened to everyone else than in one where nothing good happened to anyone. If I must walk through the night, better that it be lit only by the glow of distant stars than that I grope blindly in total darkness.'                                                          [from personal correspondence]

'Either depth or murk may obscure the bottom of a pool.'

'Where there's smoke there may be fire -- or there may simply be some fool trying to coax a flame out of soggy wood.'

'Ambition is what we settle for when we can't have faith.'

'One of the perils of stepping to the music of a "different drummer", as Thoreau put it, is that the drummer can become drowned out by the difference. 'If a man does not keep pace with his companions', yet is constantly mindful of the fact, his distraction from the business of walking is likely to reduce his own pace to little more than an ungainly stagger.'

'In my experience, there are two kinds of answers: long ones and wrong ones.'

'If you break a man's leg, he may forgive you and yet walk awhile with a limp.'

'When a wise man and a fool converse, neither knows which he is.'

'Often, when one attempts to convey a difficult idea, the greatest frustration is not those who clearly fail to grasp it, but those who are convinced they understand it well.'

'The truth may sometimes cause offense; but an attractive and soothing lie inevitably will offend even more, only later and often too late for the damage to be repaired.'

On rationalization: 'Where there's a will -- there are usually a lot of relatives.'

'Every virtue can be abused.'

'''Venting", confession, and crying can all be good for the soul; but beyond a certain point one finds they cease to be cathartic and begin to make matters worse. Every medicine becomes toxic in overdose.'

'We are apt to comprehend least the reasons why we need God's mercy most.'

'One who can only ridicule what he does not understand shows himself likely to laugh at anything.'

'Life is defined by the unlikely.'

'Always in our greatest strengths lie our greatest vulnerabilities.'

'No man who really has seen the world can ever again be what is commonly called "a man of the world", not if he has gained any understanding from the experience.'

'It is a much greater step down from the throne of Heaven to the cross of Golgotha than the step we are asked to take, down from the thrones of our own hearts.'

'One pure joy can overwhelm a universe of sorrow.'

'Parenthood is a divine confidence, for in nothing else may we so nearly glimpse the joy (and pain) we ourselves mean to God.'

'Nothing disorients people more than someone being objective.'
                                                                  
     
[from personal correspondence]

The Job* Principle: 'Once you finally require God more than God's provision, then He provides.'
                                                                       
[* rhyming with 'globe']

'Nice guys don't finish last; they just hold their stride till the other runners wear themselves out.'

'If the wrath of God is the great and terrible darkness that stretches out before me whenever I turn my back on His light, it is also my own shadow.'

'Nonsense isn't worth my two cents.'

'People often mistake a looking-glass for a magnifying glass.'

'Grief may perhaps be thought of as retrospective fear.'

'Forbidden fruit is indeed most sweet -- till you find the maggots at its core.'

'It is no friend who, for fear of causing me distress, fails to warm me of the charging bull.'

'Little worth there is in praise of which author and object are one.'

'It is always best to wait for God's Isaac than to achieve your own Ishmael.'

'Efficiency often finds its most perfect opposite in Ethics.'

'If a man offers friendship only to those who agree with him fully on every issue, he will find he has shunned even God.'

'Unfortunately, "sola Scriptura" was always more popular as a rallying cry than as a sincere, practical approach to theology.'                                                         [from personal correspondence]

'War is sometimes unavoidable, but on earth it is always failure; and once begun it will yield no victory until and unless those whom it seduced have learned humility and those whom it has scarred can grant forgiveness.'

'Why should I imagine that personal weakness, or any misconceptions or injustices I perhaps suffer, rationalize (let alone excuse) my failure to love?  The confines of Incarnation and the blindness of both friend and foe only showed God's love more exquisite!'

'The unexamined life may indeed not be worth living, but the over-examined life is no living at all.'

'If depression can make us forget what is worthwhile in life, desperation can make us forget why we let certain things go.' 

'Few things produce more intolerance than excessive concern for tolerance.'

'Never confuse myth with fiction.'

'I am not one for competitive games, nor indeed for competition itself.  Most often I would sooner walk away from a proposed rivalry; and anything truly worthy of contest demands engagement too earnest to be called a "game".'

'Sometimes you must be alone to understand best how much you're not.'
                                                                       [from personal correspondence]

'Is there any notion on earth more rehashed than "forward thinking"?'

'Wisdom is three-fold:  It is the recognition of that which is truly worthwhile, the resolution to do and be what this requires of oneself, and, finally, taking the next step, though all beyond is yet in darkness.'

'If you keep repeating an idea long enough, even the most obtuse will eventually believe it their own and suggest you consider it.'

'Nothing endangers the success of a good thing more than the success of a good thing.'

'Most liars eventually fall upon their own swords.'

'We bother to light the darkness only because we remember the Day and anticipate the Dawn.'
                                                                      [from personal correspondence]

'How is it we -- so desperately in need of Grace and who have known such unearned Love -- can dare to gloat when seeing justice served?  Beneath the Father's holiness, the greatest saint stands but a hair's breadth higher than the vilest and most unrepentant wretch.  Indeed, what makes the saint so great is how clearly he knows this, and how he learns from Love.'

'The greatest enemy of love, of freedom, of dignity, of peace has ever been -- not hatred, nor greed, nor even carelessness; but that sin which is the root of all -- arrogance.'

'It is still too seldom understood that respect and fear are mutually exclusive. When a man resorts to intimidation, he builds others' respect not for himself, but only for the wisdom of discreet responses. And when one forfeits the true respect in which he was formerly held, the highest regard he may hope for from those about him (and then only if they are exceptional) is pity.'

'It is because I do believe in and aspire to justice, duty, loyalty, courage, truth, faith, and love that I withstand much exhortation which employs those words.'

'If the vain and irrational enemy before you seems your opposite on every point and will not cease shouting long enough to heed your gently proffered wisdom, it would be well to consider whether you are standing before a mirror.'

'If you challenge a man of peace to a duel and find yourself the only one standing in the end, it means you lost.'

'There are times when you honestly cannot say with certainty whether what you are doing is best described as prayer, meditation, a cry for Help, brooding, whining, rationalizing, or just talking too much and listening too little. And then it occurs to you that perhaps this is why all God’s dealings with us involve a hefty measure of grace.'

'There can be few thoughts more perilous than the hypothetical grievance.  We are already too seldom just in our response to actual offenses, but to think along such lines as "That’s exactly the sort of thing [whoever] would have [done/said] if they’d [been there/had the chance]” is a terrible abuse of our gift of imagination. And because the "offense" is one the "accused" never has a chance to acknowledge or repent of, let alone ask forgiveness for, we leave ourselves free to fan the toxic flames of resentment – or, perhaps worse, to wallow in our supposed tolerance.'

'No love we feel, no sacrifice we make for another, can ever of itself achieve even the feeblest shadow of the Love which was poured out for us. Yet there are times when His Spirit somehow takes our love, our labours, our sacrifices, our broken hearts -- as hopelessly inadequate as we know them to be -- and makes them His own. And then, indeed, there is hope.'

'Tears are so impartial.  They flow from joy as well as from sorrow, from gratitude as well as from grief.'