A Little Ode to Story – Favorite Quotes from the Storyline Conference

This week I happened upon my notes from the Storyline Conference I attended last November. I was reminded again how much I savored the experience.

And curiously enough during the conference I noted to my friend Krista: “I love my job, but I’d really like to do a documentary on Syrian refugees on the side.” However, there was no side to my deadline-dense job. Then…I arrived at work the next week to find out my position was among several being cut. While I was sad to leave a team I loved and a job that was a playground for my curiosity…it’s been such a graced time. And this spring I found myself in the Middle East interviewing Syrian refugees. I love it when God nails foreshadowing…or rather should I say, when I actually notice it.

Here are a few of my favorite quotes from the conference:

“What will the world miss if you do not tell your story?” — Don Miller

“Story changes the moral compass in the human brain.” – Robert McKee

“Life begins at the end of your comfort zone.” Neale Donald Walsch

“Don’t change your life…just be a better observer of your life. Be your favorite future version of yourself. Have a picture of yourself…of your character in the future and live that out. What do I have to do today to keep that future in mind?” – Glennon Doyle Mennon

“Let pain have a sense of meaning and dignity.” – Don Miller

“God did not create us to live in reaction, but to be co-creators of a meaningful life.” – Viktor Frankl

“In some way, suffering ceases to be suffering when we find a meaning for it.” Viktor Frankl

“Do your thing…with great love…right now.” — Shauna Neiquest

“Staying inspired is the work of the writer. It’s a part of my job to live an inspired life. — Shauna Neiquest

“How you do anything is how you do everything.” Richard Rohr

“ What if when people meet us they feel like they have just met heaven?

“We are not our failures or success, we are our love.” – Bob Goff

“What’s the next humblest version of you?”- Bob Goff

“Whisper to your heart. The more we talk to our heart, the more we connect with Jesus.”- Bob Goff

A Dare to Contend for Desire (For Longing by John O’Donohue)

Blessed be the longing that brought you here

And quickens your soul with wonder.

May you have the courage to listen to the voice of desire

That disturbs you when you have settled for something safe.

May you have the wisdom to enter generously into your own unease

To discover the new direction your longing wants you to take.

May the forms of your belonging–in love, creativity, and friendship–

Be equal to the grandeur and the call of your soul.

May the one you long for long for you.

May your dreams gradually reveal the destination of your desire.

May a secret Providence guide your thought and nurture your feeling.

May your mind inhabit your life with the sureness with which
your body inhabits the world.

May your heart never be haunted by ghost-structures of old damage.

May you come to accept your longing as divine urgency.

May you know the urgency with which God longs for you.

The Art of Showing Up: A Benediction for Being Here

Sometimes people have no idea the Herculean effort it took for you to lift the covers, crawl out of the bed and choose the shirt you knew you had to iron. Bless you for showing up.


The sky whispered gray and the rain ran hard, and you had much rather curl up on the couch and remember the lover that left you in a storm. Bless you for showing up.


The to-do list is bound to outlast you, the demands never use their inside voices, the inner-boss in you will likely not be satisfied again today. Bless you for showing up.


The friends, the family, the strangers on the subway may never get how much you’ve worked to be sane…especially when the rain runs hard. Bless you for showing up.


May you continue to simply show up for the day, and may that be enough, may that be love.

A Prayer for the Survivors: May the Angel of Healing Come.

In this week of suffering and survivors — those caught in the quakes of earth and the swallows of sea, here’s a piece of poetry by John O’Donohue…a prayer of blessing.

The Nepal earthquake www.newscientist.com

The Nepal earthquake

A Blessing of Angels, by John O’Donohue

May the Angels in their beauty bless you.
May they turn toward you streams of blessing.

May the Angel of Awakening stir your heart
To come alive to the eternal within you,
To all the invitations that quietly surround you.

May the Angel of Healing turn your wounds
Into sources of refreshment.

May the Angel of the Imagination enable you
To stand on the true thresholds,
At ease with your ambivalence
And drawn in new direction
Through the glow of your contradictions.

May the Angel of Compassion open your eyes
To the unseen suffering around you.

May the Angel of Wildness disturb the places
Where your life is domesticated and safe,
Take you to the territories of true otherness

Where all that is awkward in you
Can fall into its own rhythm.

May the Angel of Eros introduce you
To the beauty of your senses
To celebrate your inheritance
As a temple of the holy spirit.

May the Angel of Justice disturb you
To take the side of the poor and the wronged.

May the Angel of Encouragement confirm you
In worth and self-respect,
That you may live with the dignity
That presides in your soul.

May the Angel of Death arrive only
When your life is complete
And you have brought every given gift
To the threshold where its infinity can shine.

May all the Angels be your sheltering
And joyful guardians.

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