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The Importance of being Foolish Part 2 December 28, 2005

Posted by butterfly in Reading.

I must admit, my quest to finish the book was a failure. Though I feel into the book, on page 49, I have 182 in total to read. Here is two of the passages that caught me the most:
“…Why aren’t we windows to God at work? Why aren’t we transparent?

To have the mind of Christ Jesus, to think his thoughts, share his ideals, dream his dreams, throb with his desires, replace our natural responses to persons and situations with the concern of Jesus, and make the mind-set of Christ so completely our own that ‘the life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me’ (Galatians 2:20), is not the secret of or the shortcut to transparency. It is transparency.

Often our preoccupation with the three most basic human desires-security, plasure, and power-is the cloak that covers transparency. The endless struggle for enough money, good feelings, and prestige yields a rich harvest of worry, frustration, suspicion, anger, jealousy, harvest of worry, frustration, suspicion, anger, jealousy, anxiety, fear, and resentment. These powerful, emotion-backed desires cause 99 percent of the self-inflicted and unnecessary suffering in our lives. They continually focus our attention on self and keep us from being transparent, dimming the light and obscuring ‘the glory of God in the face of Christ’ (2 Corinthians 4:6).”

“The demands of the gospel bring us to the vivid awareness of our weakness and imperfection. They stun us, reduce our ocerestimation of ourselves, and make us realize how limited we are. This realiztation-when we allow it to infiltrate our hearts-keeps us from smugness, complacency, and the self-sufficiency that poisons spirituality. God’s Word wakes us up to our need. Until we submit our lives to the judgement of the gospel and the standards of goodness and virtue established by Jesus, there can be no profound consciousness of being a sinner in need of mercy. How many of us have actually tasted the truth that we are saved; that we do not save ourselves; that in very truth we are poor, weak sinners with hereditary faults and limited virtues; that we are God’s children not by our merit but by God’s mercy.

If we wink at the radical demands of the New Testament in our teaching and ignore the embarrassing implications of the precept of unicersal love, we make Christianity too easy and take away its meaning. We become as guilty as the Pharisees, ignoring the weightier matters of the difficult laws of charity, mercy, and faith while obsercing the positive laws of the church that are meant only as the boundaries of the Christian commitment.”


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