Daybreakers: 365 Eye-Opening Reflections

Clifford Williams

Sorin Books 2002; Wipf & Stock Publishers 2008
123 pages

“The first half of the book contains the bad news—things are worse than we imagine (“An exalted sense of our importance seeps into nearly every thought about ourselves.”). But things are also far better than we imagine, and the second half of the book explains why this is so (“True listening gives grace.”).

“Williams is a wise and observant writer, showing repeatedly that self-awareness is the only sure way to growth.” —Kevin Axe, Faith Links

“Clifford Williams's latest book, Daybreakers: 365 Eye-Opening Reflections, offers an entire year's worth of mantras and concepts for overcoming spiritual ambivalence. Beginning with Week 1 (which covers "pursuing the eternal") and running through Week 52 ("living for eternity"), Williams focuses on themes such as restlessness and letting go. Each week offers a short explanation of the theme, then gives a specific phrase to ruminate on each day. The entries are not date-specific, so readers may begin the book at any time during the calendar year.” —Publishers Weekly © 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.


First Quarter: Where Are We Headed?

1 Pursuing the Eternal

2 Discovering Our Deepest Desires

3 Intimations of Eternity

4 Yearning for Something More

5 Restlessness

6 Looking for Meaning

7 Wasting Life

8 The Hidden Self

9 Secrets

10 Self-Watching

11 Spiritual Ambivalence

12 A Tangled Mess

13 Strangers to Ourselves

Second Quarter: Obstacles Along the Way

14 Wanting to Be Better than Others

15 Looking for Admiration

16 Admiring Ourselves

17 Justifying Ourselves

18 Pretending

19 Appearing Virtuous

20 The Real Thing

21 Sly and Crafty Enemies

22 The Lure of Imagination

23 Busyness

24 A Bundle of Desires

25 Ulterior Aims

26 Inner Temptations

Third Quarter: Becoming New

27 Being Open to Grace

28 Wrestling With Grace

29 Allowing Ourselves to Be Loved

30 Letting Go

31 Gaining a New Identity

32 Accepting Ourselves

33 Acquiring Single-Minded Faith

34 Sustaining Faith

35 Keeping Faith Passionate

36 Being in a Community of Grace

37 Recognizing the Wounded

38 Giving Grace

39 Receiving Grace

Fourth Quarter: Moving Toward the Eternal

40 Reflecting on Goodness

41 Loving

42 Listening

43 Confessing and Forgiving

44 Living Together in Love

45 Shrinking the Expansive Ego

46 Moving Beyond the Self

47 Observing Moral Beauty

48 Living Largely

49 Looking for Goodness

50 Staying Vibrant

51 Finding Meaning

52 Living for Eternity

Week 41: Loving

The one thing everyone needs is to be loved. Those with failure in their lives need to feel

accepted. Those with painful memories need support; those who are struggling to make

sense of their lives need encouragement; those with guilt need forgiveness; those who are

battling low self-esteem need shoring up. Love does all of these things. It accepts, supports,

encourages, forgives, and shores up.

If everyone needs to be loved more, it follows that other people need to love more. We, of

course, are those other people. When we love, people sense that their lives are worthwhile.

They are encouraged and feel accepted. They can deal with failure and disabilities. With

our loving, people are enabled to lead richer lives.

Sunday: The best love comes from an overflowing heart.

Monday: More courage is required to love than to walk two blocks through a gang-infested

territory at night.

Tuesday: Finding untainted love is as exhilarating as it is surprising.

Wednesday: People change more when we love them without trying to change them than

when we actively try to change them.

Thursday: Our delight in another’s presence exhibits itself on our faces.

Friday: If we have never been the recipient of real love, we may have to look for people

who will love us before looking for people to love.

Saturday: The core of love is to be present to another without trying to get something for


From Daybreakers: 365 Eye-Opening Reflections (Sorin Books, 2001, 98-99. Copyright 2002 by Clifford Williams. Used with permission of the publisher. All rights reserved.

Also: With All That We Have, Why Aren't We Satisfied? (Sorin Books 2001; (Wipf & Stock 2008)

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