Far more powerful and poignant is the effect [of joy] in a serious tale of Faerie. In such stories, when the sudden turn comes, we get a piercing glimpse of joy, and heart’s desire, that for a moment passes outside the frame, rends indeed the very web of story, and lets a gleam come through.

I would venture to say that approaching the Christian story from this perspective, it has long been my feeling (a joyous feeling) that God redeemed the corrupt making-creatures, men, in a way fitting to this aspect, as to others, of their strange nature. The Gospels contain a fairy-story, or a story of a larger kind which embraces all the essence of fairy-stories. …and among its marvels is the greatest and most complete conceivable eucatastrophe. The Birth of Christ is the eucatastrophe of Man’s history. The Resurrection is the eucatastrophe of the story of the Incarnation.

J.R.R. Tolkien, on the “piercing glimpse of joy” we all feel at Christmas in “On Fairy-Stories

A beautiful clip from “The Tree of Life.”

Save me, O God!
For the waters have come up to my neck.

I sink in deep mire,
where there is no foothold;
I have come into deep waters,
and the flood sweeps over me.

I am weary with my crying out;
my throat is parched.
My eyes grow dim
with waiting for my God.

More in number than the hairs of my head
are those who hate me without cause;
mighty are those who would destroy me,
those who attack me with lies.
What I did not steal
must I now restore?

O God, you know my folly;
the wrongs I have done are not hidden from you.

Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me,
O Lord GOD of hosts;
let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me,

(Psalms 69:1–6 ESV)

A misty aerial view of Chicago.

It is necessary that we find God, and he cannot be found in noise and unpeace. See how nature – trees, flowers, and grass – grow in stillness; how stars, moon, and sun run their course in silence. The more we receive through quiet prayer, the more we can give in the activity of our daily lives. In essence, it is not what we say, but what God says to us and through us.
Mother Theresa (HT Plough Publishing’s “Daily Dig”)
Cedar Roots. Interstate Park, Taylor’s Falls, MN

Cedar Roots. Interstate Park, Taylor’s Falls, MN