Olive Ann Burns Quotes.

1. "But to mourn, that's different. To mourn is to be eaten alive with homesickness for the person."
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

2. "Ask and it shall be given you,'" I began. "'Seek and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.' We have the same message in the Book of Saint John," I said, sounding for all the world like a preacher...." Well, but how could I just stop there? Those words were worse than nothing if I didn't tell what they meant to Grandpa. Looking at the long rough box, I spoke timid, in a mumbled voice. Not preachified at all. "Grandpa didn't think Jesus meant, by that, that we should ast God for things, or for special favors. He said we could trust that in the nature of things, without astin', we'll get lots of blessin's and happy surprises and maybe a miracle or two. When Jesus said ast and you'll get it, He meant things of the spirit, not the flesh. Right now for instance, I could ast, 'Lord please raise Grandpa from the dead,' but it wouldn't happen. But I can say, 'Please, God, comfort me,' and I'll get heart's ease. Grandpa said Jesus meant us to ast for hope, forgiveness, and all that. Ast, 'Hep us not be scared, hep us not be greedy, give us courage to try." I was really carried away. "Ast any such and God will give it to you. But don't ast Him not to let fire burn, or say spare me from death. At least, uh, that's what Grandpa said."
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

3. "Livin' is like pourin' water out of a tumbler into a dang Coca-Cola bottle. If'n you skeered you can't do it, you cain't. If'n you say to yourself, "By dang, I can do it!" then, by dang, you won't slosh a drop."
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

4. "They's a heap more to God's will than death, disapoint-ment, and like thet. Hit's God's will for us to be good and do good, love one another, be forgivin'..." He laughed. "I reckon I ain't very forgivin', son. I can forgive a fool, but I ain't inner-rested in coddlin' hypocrites. Well anyhow, folks who think God's will jest has to do with sufferin' and dyin', they done missed the whole point."
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

5. "Hit ain't sacrilege. Miss Effie Belle says when she cain't think what to have for dinner, she asts God and right off He gives her an idea. To my thinkin', thet's sacrilege." Miss Love really laughed. "There's not a woman in the world who hasn't prayed what to cook for dinner, Rucker!"
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

6. "Two or more year ago she was out workin' in her rose garden one mornin' - did you know, boy, she's got over sixty different kinds out there? - and she said to me, said, 'Mr. Blakeslee, I wouldn't even mind dyin' if'n I could be buried in a bed of roses."
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

7. "Jesus meant us to ast God to hep us stand the pain, not beg Him to take the pain away."
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

8. "Ain’t the best prayin’ jest bein’ with God and talkin’ a while, like He’s a good friend, stead a-like he runs a store and you’ve come in a-hopin’ to git a bargain?"
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

9. "When Jesus said ast and you’ll get it, He meant things of the spirit, not the flesh. Grandpa said Jesus meant us to ast for hope, forgiveness, and all like that. Ast ‘Hep us not be scared, hep us not be greedy, give us courage to try…Ast any such and God will give it to you. But don’t ast Him not to let fire burn, or say spare me from death."
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

10. "and lots a-folks git well thet nobody ever thought to see out a-bed agin cept in a coffin. Still and all, common sense tells you this much: everwhat makes a wheel run over a track will make it run over a boy if’n he’s in the way. If’n you’d a-got kilt, it’d mean you jest didn’t move fast enough, like a rabbit that gits caught by a hound dog. You think God favors the dog over the rabbit, son? I shook my head. I don’t neither. When it comes to prayin’, we got it all over the other animals, but we ain’t no different when it comes to livin’ and dyin’. If’n you give God the credit when somebody don’t die, you go’n blame Him when they do die? Call it His will? Ever noticed we git well all the time and don’t die but once’t? Thet has to mean God always wants us to live if’n we can. Hit ain’t never His will for us to die—cept in the big sense. In the sense He was smart enough not to make life eternal on this here earth, with people"
- Olive Ann Burns, Cold Sassy Tree

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