On 10/21/2012, the day of Grandma Grise's ashes scattering ceremony, Mom gave me Blessed Spinoza and Peace in the Heart. They were Grandma's two favorite books. I read them both in honor and memory of her with the intent that I would incorporate quotes from both of them into a scrapbook page I would make.

I started with Peace In The Heart by Archibald Rutledge. As the name implies it was a very peaceful book to read. It was like watching the sun set or like taking a long walk through the woods. I read through this book very slowly since I primarily read it in bed at night and usually fell asleep after just a few pages. Throughout his naturalistic expositions Rutledge shares some very interesting insights. There were too many to incorporate into the scrapbook pages (above) so I have listed some of my favorite quotes from the book below:

I finished with Blessed Spinoza which was a biography of the philosopher Baruch Spinoza. I regret that I could not get into it as much as Peace in the Heart. Spinoza was basically an atheist who claimed that he was not an atheist, equating God with nature and declaring that religion and reason were incompatible. In his defense, he wrote in a time of ignorance marked with witch burnings, inquisitions, and religions that grossly misrepresented the Bible, but there were simply no quotes or concepts from this book that I could use on Grandma's scrapbook pages.

In the end I appreciated this enlightening walk through Grandma's literary world. I would like to close this page with a poem that Mom found in one of Grandma's books that she included on Grandma's memorial collage at her ashes scattering ceremony:

MAN OR BIRD

God gave the birds the power of flight,
Some fly in day and some in night.
How wonderful it sure must be
To land upon the tallest tree,
To soar through valleys and see below
The summer greens and winter snow.
They never seem to have a care -
Most times their food is everywhere,
But before you wish to be a bird
I have some facts that should be heard:
Most birds live so short a span
Unlike what God has given man,
For when they die their life will end
They will not be reborn again.
But God has put a soul in us
And only wants our love and trust,
Then as our earthly life is through
Our life in heaven we will ensue.
So do not wish for wings to fly,
No bird on earth could go that high
As when He lifts our soul above
And showers us with endless love.

- Albert N. Theel

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