Here is a selection of independent quotations from books I am reading. I hope they offer as much food for thought for you as they have for me!
“If you come to the end of yourself and wonder if there’s help and are surprised to find yourself at times hoping for a grace from beyond, it’s a sign that grace is already at work. Keep asking. You don’t have to believe in order to ask. Here’s the thing: You can ask for help believing too. Wanting help is its own nascent trust. The desire for grace is the first grace. Coming to the end of your self-sufficiency is the first revelation.” (Smith, On the Road with Saint Augustine)
“Reading the greats ought to breed modesty, and he who spends time with these giants should sense what a clod he is. The reality, though, is that even the vaguest familiarity with a celebrity can induce the most cockeyed egotism.” (Reeves, Theologians You Should Know)
“…ceasing to be ‘in love’ need not mean ceasing to love. Love in this second sense—love as distinct from ‘being in love’—is not merely a feeling. It is a deep unity, maintained by the will and deliberately strengthened by habit; reinforced by (in Christian marriages) the grace which both partners ask, and receive, from God. They can have this love for each other even at those moments when they do not like each other; as you love yourself even when you do not like yourself. They can retain this love even when each would easily, if they allowed themselves, be ‘in love’ with someone else. ‘Being in love’ first moved them to promise fidelity: this quieter love enables them to keep the promise. It is on this love that the engine of marriage is run: being in love was the explosion that started it.” (Lewis, Mere Christianity)
“What is more (and I can hardly find words to tell you how important I think this), it is just the people who are ready to submit to the loss of the thrill and settle down to the sober interest, who are then most likely to meet new thrills in some quite different direction. The man who has learned to fly and become a good pilot will suddenly discover music; the man who has settled down to live in the beauty spot will discover gardening. This is, I think, one little part of what Christ meant by saying that a thing will not really live unless it first dies. It is simply no good trying to keep any thrill: that is the very worst thing you can do. Let the thrill go—let it die away—go on through that period of death into the quieter interest and happiness that follow—and you will find you are living in a world of new thrills all the time. But if you decide to make thrills your regular diet and try to prolong them artificially, they will all get weaker and weaker, and fewer and fewer, and you will be a bored, disillusioned old man for the rest of your life.” (Lewis, Mere Christianity)