To love God wholeheartedly, we must be convinced that our only happiness is in him alone. We cannot believe this until we renounce all other efforts at happiness. If we look to God to supply half our happiness, we can only love him with half our hearts.
—William Law in Christian
Perfection (a contemporary
version by Marvin D. Hinten)
I [have] learned that worship and worry cannot live in the same heart: they are mutually exclusive.
—Ruth Bell Graham in Prodigals and Those Who Love Them
Worship Versus Control
I’m convinced that pastors don’t give two cents about worship. They really don’t. And there’s a reason for it. True worship doesn’t make anything happen. It is a losing of control, a weaning from manipulative language and entertainment.… Pastors sense that if they really practice worship they are going to empty out the sanctuary pretty fast.
—Eugene Peterson in The Door,
New Theology Unnecessary
What we-need is not, as is so often argued …, a new theology of nature but rather a return to the original message contained in the Bible and preached and practised in the early Church.… Greening Christianity does not involve grafting on to it some alien philosophy but simply restoring its original character. Indeed, it means stripping off a whole series of alien layers that have accumulated to reveal the original greenness of the Garden of Eden and the cross on Calvary.
—Ian Bradley in God Is Green:
Ecology for Christians
Beyond The Darkness
To look up into a dark sky and see it suddenly open, as lightning plays across it, to see in one revealing flash deep into the kingdoms of light, is to know what prayer most truly is. There is mystery, but beyond that darkness is not a deeper darkness, but light—kingdoms of light.
—Amy Carmichael in Learning
of God, by Stuart and
Busy-ness in a profession can be a way to avoid God, the meaning of life, and life itself.
—Sidney S. Macaulay, quoted in
CMDS Journal (Spring 1992)
Worshiping The Wrong Monarch
The majority of us do not enthrone God, we enthrone common sense. We make our decisions and then ask the real God to bless our god’s decision.
—Oswald Chambers in The
He believed in Communism the way most people believed in God; he would not be greatly surprised or disappointed if he turned out to be wrong, and meanwhile it made little difference in the way he lived.
—Ken Follett of a character in his novel Triple
Sometimes I wonder if Lewis and Clark shouldn’t have been made to file an environmental impact study before they started west, and Columbus before he ever sailed. They might never have got their permits.
—Wallace Stegner in “The
Aesthetics of Aridity,”
(Harper’s, April 1992)
Wounding Our Friend And Lover
“Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God” commands Paul. Now, only a dear friend can be grieved. Not a stranger: he might be annoyed. Not a chance acquaintance: he might be perplexed. Not a business partner: he might be offended. Only a loved one can be grieved.
—Milton S. Agnew in The Holy
Spirit—Friend and Counsellor
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