The Grammar of God’s Self-Utterance

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And I wonder how it can be that simply holding a book in my hands can make me so happy. And I know it is more than the beauty of these words and images or even this love I have for the feathered ones. But something inside of me is named through the joy found in fingering a thing of beauty created in love. And I feel love in these pages.

Catholic theologian Karl Rahner says, “Because of the Word of God in our midst, it can now be seen that each of us is a little word and together we will spell our something great…Human nature is the grammar of God’s self-utterance. Our human nature is so made that God can speak in and through us…”

Yes, yes. This is why. Though He is not named, I feel God in these pages. Such is the beauty of sharing our gifts with one another. Such is the beauty of creating. This is the way to be the Grammar of God.
If there is a bird-lover on your Christmas list, may I humbly recommend this beautiful book? It came to me quite by accident but I open it every day like a present. Such beauty in these pages. 

Images: scenes from The Bluebird Effect: Uncommon Bonds with Common Birds by Julie Zickefoose.


  1. Dawn Paoletta says

    Seriously, I want! I so often write about birds. Observing them gives me soul satisfaction. I don’t even know their common names but love each one for a moment in time a they share their little spiritual lessons before me! Thanks for sharing this one!

  2. Linda Chontos says

    You make pictures come to beautiful live with your words dear heart. It looks like such a lovely book and the quote – it is simply breathtaking. Thank you Laura.

  3. says

    It makes me smile that you and Susan were the first two commentators on this post because this book made me think of you both! Her stories of taking care of these birds are so moving–taking me to a deeper place when I watch at my feeder. Love you, Linda.

  4. says

    Susan, as I told Linda above, I thought of you when I picked this book up! This dear woman’s love of birds comes through in her water colors just as yours does in your photos. The stories she shares about caring for these little ones are so moving. It’s a lovely book.

  5. says

    I am in love with this book, Dawn. I can’t get over how beautiful it is. They are little teachers, aren’t our feathered friends? Maybe you should put this on your Christmas list…

  6. Pam says

    This is SO amazing! I was just in Barnes and Noble last night, browsing with a photographer friend who loves birds, and this book leaped off the shelf to both of us at the same time! Beautiful cover that draws me… – Pam, apples of gold.

  7. says

    I surmised as much, Marilyn. I visited her blog and fell in love with Chet Baker (you know I have a weakness for the Boston Terrier) and saw that he stays with friends in WV when they are away. Her Starling story mentions driving through Marietta, so I knew it must be close. What a talented and soulful lady she is! This book has been keeping me company every evening when the day slows. Wish I could pick her brain and glean from all her knowledge of these little feathered ones. It’s a wonderful book (Ok. I’m gushing now. I’ll stop.)

  8. says

    Divine Providence, Pam! The same thing happened to me. Only one left on the shelf, and it drew my eye like a magnet. Maureen Doallas also tells me there are a couple other bird books newly released, one a poetry book by Billy Collins. So intrigued boy that.

  9. says

    I am no expert, Megan. 🙂 But I do love these little creatures. It’s on the bucket list to learn more, go on some kind of birding thingie, and indulge. This book makes me want to get there soon. *sigh*

  10. Pam says

    Exactly. Covers like this one always have that magnet effect on me…I’ll have to check that poetry one too… 🙂 I shared this post with my photographer friend. She said she had just ordered it on Amazon. I have to wait awhile, but it is on my list. 🙂

  11. says

    Yes–kindred spirits, indeed, Patricia :). I would love to sit at this author’s feet and learn more about birdies from her. But, in a way, that’s what her book is doing for me!

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