The Office of the Chaplain United States House of Representatives

Thought of the Week

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Not to all [people], not to [anyone] always does God give complete abundance. To all sometimes, to some in long stretches of their lives, come the abasement times –times of poverty, times of ignorance, times of friendlessness, times of distrust and doubt; but God does not mean that these times should be like great barren stretches and blanks in our lives only to be travelled over for the sake of what lies beyond. To [them] who, like Paul, know how to be abased, [these abasement times] have their own rich value. They do their own good work.

To have our desire set on nothing absolutely except character, to be glad that God should lead us into any land where there is character to win, –this is the only real explanation of life. [Those who have] it may be more than reconciled to living. [They] may do more than triumph over [their] abasements. [They] may make close friendships with them, so that [they] shall part from them with sorrow when [they] is called to go to the right hand of God where there is no more abasement, nothing but fulness forevermore.

—Phillips Brooks
Phillips Brooks (1835-1893), The Light of the World, and Other Sermons