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Measuring My Days

Journals from Chalet L'Abri -- A. C. Gray

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These pages continue these mostly monthly journals of A. C. Gray writing now from his home at Massanutten in the Shenandoah Valley.  Earlier pages appeared in Letters from Arbreux and L'Abri Journals (see site links on the navigation bar above).  My thanks to readers from around the globe who have encouraged me to continue this hobby and adventure as a means to connect with friends around the globe where I have worked and journeyed as an Air Force Officer, American Red Cross worker, and Peace Corps administrator in more than eighty nations.  I welcome and encourage your comments on my guest pages...acg

January 2006

"To laugh is to risk appearing the fool. To weep is to risk being called sentimental. To reach out to another is to risk involvement. To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self. To place your ideas, your dreams before the crowd is to risk being called naive. To love is to risk not being loved in return. To live is to risk dying. To hope is to risk despair, and to try is to risk failure. But risks must be taken because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing. The person who risks nothing does nothing, has nothing, and becomes nothing. He may avoid suffering and sorrow, but he simply cannot learn and feel and change and grow and love and live. Chained by his certitudes, he is a slave, he's forfeited his freedom. Only the person who risks is truly free."       Leo Buscaglia

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Chalet L’Abri, New Years, 2006……Measuring My Days….acg

        And so, as this new year begins, I pledge to continue this adventure of sharing my journal with readers around the globe, alas, perhaps to some, to risk appearing the fool.  Nevertheless, feedback for these pages has been encouraging down the years.  This effort to reach out and keep in touch with friends encountered at my life’s several crosswords has brought great rewards.  The more earnestly I search for something meaningful to share in these pages, the more I am discovering the depth of those who have enlightened and strenthened the faith of generations.  Leo Buscaglia, a penpal before his death, mentored me on the importance of learning, loving and living. Just now I am mentored with the writings of Scottish nobleman and Christian apologist James Stewart.  I find myself mentally underlining almost every paragraph of his writing, wanting to appropriate his insights for my own.  In search of meaning through the turbulence of these times, I need a faith that anchors my soul.  Resolutions for 2006:  Risk more, Care More, Share More, Give More, Learn more, Love More…. Live More!

 “….a very wonderful thing … happens:  you begin exploring the fact of Christ, perhaps merely intellectually and theologically – and before you know where you are, the fact is Christ is exploring you,  spiritually and morally.  You begin by dealing with a historic Figure as presented in the Gospels, and gradually you become aware that the ultimate reality and heart of things is dealing with you.  You begin by looking for the secret of this Master of life who walked the Galilean road, and piercingly you are made to feel that everything that is highest and holiest and divinest in the universe is looking for you.  You set out to see what you can find in Christ, and sooner or later God in Christ finds you.”   [To borrow a metaphor from Francis Thompson:  The Hound of Heaven is on your trail..…acg]

 

          When you are feeling fretted and unhappy….when life is doing its level best to thwart your plans and defeat your hopes, pause and remember the lovely things on the other side, all God’s troops of stars amid the darkness…Forget not you are His debtor for every breath you breathe;  His debtor for life and intellect, and memory and hope, and the courage to endure;  His debtor for day and night, and the wind on the heath, and the light of sunset skies; His debtor for every moment of insight, ever clasp of the hand of a friend, every atom of beauty in the world around you, every experience of forgiveness at the foot of the cross of Jesus.  Be sure you see to it, says Paul, that you face your difficulties and frustrations in the light of your mercies and blessings, “in prayer and supplication – with thanksgiving.”

Both quotes from
James Stewart, The Strong Name