Photo by Chuck Bowman
Photo: Chuck Bowman
Photo by Chuck Bowman

    At the top of the Home Page:
    --Try me, O God - The Rock of Ages author
    --A good kind of pain

    Midway down the page:
    --A Persian prayer
    --Helen Keller on character

    For Prayer Warriors who scroll down:
    --A Sioux prayer of humility
    --Purification through goodness

    And the Last Word:  The green nuts in us


                           The Religion Network
                                                      Pray the Day.

Photo by Chuck Bowman

     WELCOME! I'm Lisa Bowman. The Religion Network is an interfaith website providing daily inspiration and
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TODAY'S THEME: Facing Our Faults
Support The Religion Network!
One is not born a woman, one becomes one.

Simone de Beauvoir (1908-1986)
Photo: Stephen Bowman
And now, the Last Word:
Henri J. M. Nouwen (1932-1996)
Dutch priest and author of 40 books on spiritual life
From "The Dance of Life"
Ave Maria Press, 2005
Try me, O God, and search the
ground of my heart
: prove me and
examine my thoughts. Look well if
there be any wickedness in me, any
root of bitterness yet undiscovered;
and lead me in the way everlasting.
Show me the true state of my soul.
Bring me out from every false refuge.
Strip off every deceitful covering,
every covering that is not of Thy
Spirit. Forbid that the anchor of my
hope should be cast, or the house
of my dependence built, on any but
Christ, the Rock of Ages. Forbid
that I should rest short of that repen-
tance which is Thy gift, and is
connected with life eternal: and
forbid, O forbid, that I should sit
down without aspiring to that con-
formity unto Thee in righteousness
and true holiness, abstracted from
which repentance is false and faith
is dead.

Augustus Toplady (1740-1778)
Anglican divine, originally a follower of John Wesley,
he became a Calvinist minister. He authored the classic
hymn, 'Rock of Ages.' (see inset at right)
           Rock of Ages by Augustus Toplady
      First published in The Gospel Magazine, 1775

    Rock of Ages, cleft for me,
    Let me hide myself in Thee
    Let the water and the blood,
    From Thy riven side which flowed,
    Be of sin the double cure,
    Save from wrath and make me pure.
It takes courage to be willing to stand still and feel what we must feel.
Sometimes, we have what seems like endless layers of pain inside us. Pain hurts.
Grief hurts. Sadness hurts. It does not feel good. But neither does denying what
is already there; neither does living a lifetimes with old and new pockets of pain
packed, stored, and stacked within.

It will only hurt for a while, no longer than necessary, to heal us. We can trust
that if we must feel pain, it is part of healing, and it is good. We can become
willing to surrender to and accept the inevitable painful feelings that are a good
part of recovery.

Melody Beattie
From 'The Language of Letting Go'
Hazeldon, 1990
Photo by Chuck Bowman
All that we ought to have thought and have not thought,
All that we ought to have said, and have not said,
All that we ought to have done, and have not done;

All that we ought not to have thought, and yet have thought,
All that we ought not to have spoken, and yet have spoken,

All that we ought not to have done, and yet have done;
For thoughts, words and works pray we, O God, for forgiveness.

Persian Prayer
Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and
suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved.

Helen Keller (1880-1968)
US blind and deaf educator
I come before thee as one of thy many children.
See, I am small and weak, I need thy strength and

Grant me to walk in beauty and that my eyes may
ever behold the crimson sunset. May my hands
treat with respect the things which thou hast
created, may my ears hear thy voice!

Make me wise, that I may understand the things
which thou hast taught my people, which thou hast
hidden in every leaf and every rock.

I long for strength, not in order that I may
overreach my brother but to fight my greatest
enemy --- myself.

Make me ever ready to come to thee with pure
hands and candid eyes, so that my spirit, when
life disappears like the setting sun, may stand
unashamed before thee.

Sioux prayer
Photo by Stephen Bowman
Dislodging a green nut from its shell is almost impossible,
but let it dry and the lightest tap will do it.

Sri Ramakrishna (1836-1886)
One of the most important Hindu teachers of modern times,
revered by millions as a messenger of God.
The more we come out and do good to others, the more our
hearts will be purified, and God will be in them.

Swami Vivekananda (1863-1902)
Founder of the Ramakrishna Order of Monks
Disciple of Sri Ramakrishna
The theme of this page changes each weekday.