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Chapter 9: Favorite Quotes


#1

What in this chapter really resonated with your journey?


#2

I think this is in paragraph 7:

At first the reality of his affection for us seems faint. Everything we know seems to argue against it. We may see hints of it here and there, like the moon’s gravity playing on our tides, but it doesn’t seem strong enough to overcome the draw of the world. As we continue to lean into him, however, we start to see his hand moving in our lives and get drawn into his purpose unfolding in us. Somewhere along the way, trusting his love becomes easier than doubting it and that’s where we gain traction. No longer absorbed in our wants and needs, our perspective shifts to encompass what God is doing in us and in others around us, and that will allow us to live differently in the world.

This seems to explain what it was like when I first heard about this kind of stuff… I couldn’t understand it, and it seemed like a faint, and distant concept that I couldn’t understand… It also shows how a person can eventually get to a point where they relax in Gods love, and it becomes the main issue in their life, and the main focal point of how they view them-self and others.

I also love the ending of the next paragraph…

I love the picture of an older John rejoicing that at last he had “come to know” and “come to rely” on the love God had for him.

These are things that strongly resonate with me because this has become my main focus in life… Even though I knew some of this, as I was reading, my eyes were opened even more. I also see that I need to keep asking God to help me see this more and more… and that I need to ask Father to give me even more ability to have deep affection for others, like it states 2 more paragraphs down.

I can be kind to anyone, patient with everyone, but having affection for someone is a deep delight in the heart. I may not like everything they do, but I am affected by their presence. I am interested in their well-being, and I am delighted to assist them however I am able, even if at great cost.


#3

This chapter has been one amazing read, for me it tells me how God is working in my life and has brought about some realisations that make me feel so relaxed that this really is in his hands. To narrow it down to specifics and not write a book here, I have to say that MrM has covered the second part of my favourite part which is where Wayne likens God winning us into His love as this,

As God wins us into his Love, however, a different kind of gravity takes over, much like our Apollo astronauts experienced in their flight as they reached the point when the gravitational pull of the moon had more effect on them than earths gravity.

I was ten when Apollo 11 mission blasted off and I remember trying to read and watch as much as I could regarding that whole mission. I was captivated to say the leased but I remember as a young child wondering what it would be like to have the moons gravity pulling me down and not the earths. My friends and I used to play games that were sort of slow motion in our attempt to make it seem real. Thankfully God isn’t just playing but this is really happening “I am being pulled more and more into Him by the gravity of His Love and He is Love then subsequently into Him.” It’s like I can throw a ball up here in my living room and it will come back down. That is the process I see happening with me.

Wayne continues,

At first the reality of his affection for us seems faint. Everything we know seems to argue against it. We may see hints of it here and there, like the moon’s gravity playing on our tides, but it doesn’t seem strong enough to overcome the draw of the world. As we continue to lean into him, however, we start to see his hand moving in our lives and get drawn into his purpose unfolding in us. Somewhere along the way, trusting his love becomes easier than doubting it and that’s where we gain traction. No longer absorbed in our wants and needs, our perspective shifts to encompass what God is doing in us and in others around us, and that will allow us to live differently in the world.

The next paragraph had me jumping up and down and that has to be God as I go into hospital next week for corrective knee surgery… :joy: (all true apart from the jumping up and down, but inside of me the party was on…)

The mention of 1 John 4:16 and a process, " And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.
God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them."

I love the picture of an older John rejoicing that at last he had “come to know” and “come to rely” on the love God had for him.

It was a few weeks back whilst listening to a Podcast, I can’t remember which one, but during the conversation Brad mentions that whilst reading scripture he" imagines himself inside the story." Or something to that effect, well, a light came on for me which has lead to some exciting moments in the scriptures with that idea in place and is replacing my old readings where all that happened was condemnation and the feelings of falling short etc. I could see John rejoicing and it all has brought such real meaning to that whole chapter of 1 John 4.

Now this is my last comment and I will leave a little web space for others, :innocent:
Wayne continues,

I am continually amazed at the places my growing confidence in Fathers love leads me. How great can it grow?

That comment alone fills me with excitement, I long for change so much sometimes I get really down yet now having that little morsel in my lunch box I can look at it and just get lost in the growth that is happening and I am not scared to let that flow into my daydreaming and realities. I believe I’ll still be growing long after I’ve left the title page and well into reading the most exciting story yet to unfold.


#4

The first paragraph just lit up Romans in neon. I’ve had the uncomfortable feeling that there was something amiss with so many of these men’s ministries that are popular today, but I couldn’t put my finger on it. I hate it when they give out the pulp paperbacks on Father’s Day: You Sorry Losers Who Can’t Do Anything Right/If You Guys Would Just Try Harder!!!

For centuries our Christian systems have been preoccupied with getting people to abstain from sin and live as righteously as they can before God. In Divine Conspiracy, Dallas Willard called it the Gospel of Sin Management, which is really no Gospel at all. At the end of the day, we are still focused on our sin, which only gives it more power. When Paul warned us that the mind set on the flesh is death and is unable to please God (Romans 8), he was not just talking about the mind set on indulging the flesh. He was also talking about the mind set on abstaining from it. Either way, the flesh is still the focus and we will fall victim to it.

Either way . . . . . . how crafty.


#5

Every “church group” talks about loving one another, but in most. . . . . . people don’t even know each other. Love is not an abstract commitment to the nameless; it’s a genuine affection for people around us.

I think that at some level, our “church” folks know this, too. Two words have come to grate on me big time in IC. (1) Care and (2) support. When they want to go after you they charge you with not “caring” or not “supporting” them. But nobody brings up loving them. Love never enters the conversation.


#6

“I realized a long time ago that trust is not a choice; it is the byproduct of love.”

I have been listening to each chapter from my audio book as we have been going through the book. As I listened to Chapter 9 on my computer… this is what stuck out.

I can’t express enough that my life is best lived when what I say and do becomes a byproduct of love, not a byproduct of my education, knowledge or achievements.

I always thought trust was my choice… and when I didn’t or couldn’t trust it was my failing or someone else’s failing. When trust happens because it is a byproduct of love… it is a beautiful thing.

“You don’t come away condemned, but more confident of his ability to walk with you through your most difficult moments. That allows us to love people right where they are in their own journey, without trying to push them toward our expectations.”

This quote is one I highlighted from my first read of the book. I had an amazing talk with my husband last night about this very thing. Expectations, love… the fact that love has become more attractive to me than having expectations. I have been free to let go of my expectations of my husband and just love him. Telling him that also freed him of a lot in his own mind.

I just reread Chapter 8 and I am back to the same conclusion I was sharing with my hubby last night. It really is “All about Love”


#7

On page 87 it says: "I trust God to bring people across my path that he wants me to know, especially as I follow his nudges to be in places that allow me to interact with others. Living in God’s affection will lead you to ever more spacious places to care about others with an expanded heart. You won’t fear as much the hurt people can cause you, and you’ll find yourself caring for those who are marginalized in your culture."
This chapter has helped me to see that my time in the IC was performance based and had the appearance of righteousness but could not produce the community that I long for. It kept me busy performing, competing, and pretending to be spiritual and having righteousness. I spent time in leadership and people had expectations on me to perform and minister to others but I never felt safe to ask questions, doubt, struggle, or be transparent for fear of judgement and condemnation. At the end of the day, I didn’t feel like I was growing spiritually and I began to ask the question, what were we offering people and were we really caring for one another and experiencing true community and intimacy?
I like this quote on page 87 because outside the IC, I can trust God to bring people into my life that He wants me to get to know or reach out to, and there is no agenda about IC or inviting to IC but instead I can love and care for others and let them love and care for me too and I am free to talk about life and struggles and have time to listen to their struggles too because I am not so busy anymore. And I don’t have to worry about organizing anything but can just relate to others as it happens naturally. I like this and hope my wife and I can find others who think and believe in the same thing. We are trusting God with that right now, but we have made the step to leave the IC and have made room for this to happen in our lives.


#8

P. 87…Compassion is not something I control, I either have it for someone or I don’t.

As I read this I thought of the term ‘compassionate conservative’, maybe because of the election which is mere weeks away. They are almost a contradiction in terms. To be compassionate takes all your energy, all your being. Conservative has in it the root word ‘conserve’, which means to save.

I can see why compassion isn’t something I can control, because I simply won’t have the energy for something I don’t have interest in. For example, it’s been said that a very high percentage of people who make New Years’ resolutions, break them within the first month. They make them out of obligation, not out of passion. Who is passionate about losing weight, kicking a long-term negative habit, etc.? And if compassion is something I cannot control, then it must come from someone or something outside of myself. I would say God.


#9

Ron, I feel like your comments could have been written by me. I find that quote at work in my life. I find that I am so much freer to engage with others because I’m not part of an IC with its programs and demands. I no longer have to be fake. I can be real. And I also hope that my husband and I can find more and more people who believe the same thing. I can see God at work already in this…what fun!
Joan


#10

Yes, Ron. I remember constantly being taught that “Love is a decision you make.” Ugg. I could never quite wrap my mind around it. I couldn’t get my heart to love when it just didn’t. How do you make yourself feel something you simply don’t feel?! Thankfully, Christ’s love is changing that, and I find myself having actual love that I didn’t “decide” upon. Genuine love, not “acting loving.”
–Joan


#11

Yep Beth. I’ve always hated Mother’s Day at IC. I sit wanting to be honored, but instead leave feeling guilty and because I’ve just been burdened with “how to be better mom’s.” Not to mention the fact that I feel like my family is obligated to so something nice for me. Talk about fake. That is not genuine love. Ugh! A mother wants to feel the love of her family all the time, not just when they are forced to “act loving” on Mother’s day.
I love this quote too…“Gospel of Sin Management…” Cracks me up!


#12

I’m reading some books right now about the disciple making movement among Muslims. No gimmicks or programs. Just let the Lord lead you to the people he wants you to talk to and get to know their families. Pray and make disciples. Study the Bible together and do what it says. No literature to tell you what to think. Real simple. Repeat in successive “generations.” People coming to the Lord left and right. . . . . Genuine compassion (at the personal level, not one-size-fits-all programs) and answered prayer really make a dent, too. Sounds like the stuff right out of Acts.


#13

All from page 89:
“At the time I saw faith as a mental conviction I needed to conjure up to get God to do what I thought best, but that’s a far cry from real faith.”
“Like love, trust isn’t a theology or a discipline; it’s a reality.”
“So whenever I’m caught by anxiety or stress trust invites me back to him. What is it about you I don’t know, and that if I knew, I would trust you here.”

Yes, yes, and more yes! God is teaching me about this. I’m becoming so aware of how I’ve been controlled by external expectations and obligations. Always “doing the right thing” because I thought it could win God’s favor. I wouldn’t have exactly worded it that way, but I’m beginning to see that really has been the foundation of so many of my actions and even my thoughts. They haven’t been based on trust in a loving God but more on how I could control those actions/thoughts in order to win God’s favor. As if His favor has to be won. As if there is anything I could actually do to win it!

I’ll admit it’s a struggle. It’s hard to trust a God who seems to allow horrible things to happen to innocent people. Very hard. I have a situation in my life right now that God is using to teach me. I find myself wanting to believe in a good outcome, because if I doubt, God may not answer my prayer. I am learning to confess to God that I’m struggling to trust Him, rather than pretending to trust when I’m not sure I do. I want to trust, but I’m just not really there yet. Even saying that causes me to fear. I have such a long way to go…


#14

You aren’t alone. Where did we get this idea that God would just leave us swinging out there until we can really, really, really trust Him? Like, if we can’t just free-fall without a care in the world, we don’t really trust Him. But we keep going back to Him, don’t we? It’s a reality, not a feeling? Can we trust and cast our anxiety in the same breath?


#15

I am learning to confess to God that I’m struggling to trust Him, rather than pretending to trust when I’m not sure I do.

I think you are on the right track here… Just continue being honest with God, and ask Him to help you trust Him, for help to love others, and help to live by faith instead of obligation. :slight_smile:


#16

I get the thing about prayer. Had a close friend who, in Spite of all our prayers, annointing oils, positive speak, and Happyhappyhappy attitudes -Died at the tender age of 31. I was devasted, felt betrayed- So Angry that God would betray our trust in Him by Taking her away! I determined to turn my back on Him. Believe me I tried. A couple months later, He used the book of Job in the mouth of an Episcopalian priest to tell me “You don’t understand the way things are- How dare you tell me how they ought to be?” To this day, the fact that the Creator of the Universe would take such pains to deal with an angry, petulant rebel just Boggles my mind. Such grace and mercy I can never deserve. Took 4 years for Him to explain to me that our "faith was Not in Him, but in our “faith”- in our ability to understand the rules and try to force Him to follow them. Yikes. Letting go of Expectations has been an ongoing struggle for me. Lots of hard lessons on this road, aren’t there? But How amazing that He loves us enough to patiently let us learn them.


#17

I am learning oh so slowly it seems, to trust every aspect of my life to the One to whom I belong. But, one area that is Really causing me stress is the upcoming election. Our country has gone Badly off the rails, and I think we may get Exactly what we deserve this time round. Anyone else dealing with this? I pray almost constantly about it. How do we trust our lives to God while living in such turmoil? How involved should we be in cultural processes? Coming up on 400 Million souls live in this land- and billions around the world are affected by what goes on here. I feel like Pippin seated on the walls of Gondor and honestly don’t know how to leave this to God. We are not robots or puppets- we can and should interact with the world we live in. But to what extent? I like Wayne’s comment "what is it I don’t know about You, that If I knew, I could trust you with this? and am trying to ask that, but truly, this things looms so Huge in my mind it is hard to even listen. Thoughts?


#19

Hi vam,

I’m having similar concerns too…

I think Wayne talked about this recently on The God Journey #'s 548 and 541.

Some things we can do are to build bridges between people with Fathers love, and by helping find ways to have mutual win-win situations.

I’d suggest that we continue to focus on relaxing in Gods love and living by faith instead of self-effort and religious obligation.

Lenny,
Bailey, NC


#20

I have spent a good portion of my Christian life trying to win God’s favor. (I still get worried about being a “goat” instead of a “sheep”.) Truly trusting in a God who loves me makes all the difference in my daily living. It IS a struggle, because I can still read mandates in scripture that make me feel inadequate.
Bobbe


#21

I sure hope so, because that is precisely the reality more often than not. And, Beth, maybe that’s exactly why Wayne wrote “Trust is not a choice; it is the byproduct of love.” The more we experience God’s love, the more we trust. It will probably never be 24/7 this side of heaven.

On another note: I loved the paragraph about how we often judge well-known Christians who have ‘fallen.’ It made me think again about how we Christians are all in the same boat. We can work hard to deal with inner temptations by sheer strength of will, and that works for awhile. This cycle of sin/repentance/sin causes a great deal of self-condemnation. The idea of leaning into my Father’s love and learning to trust and rest really may just help break the cycle!

–Bobbe