To remain… to abide… to bear fruit

I have been in the habit of reading through a daily lectionary reading the past several months. It is a joyous journey that keeps me faithfully reading the broad scope of the biblical story.

But then there are passages that sweep into my spirit with a fresh wind and I am held there for a bit of time. It messes up my “schedule”, but I get less worried about that over time. I love the story. And I love the “camping out.” Both are necessary for my life.

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Vices… when seeking good goes bad

All the vices are distorted or excessive attachments to good things. Wrath is ostensibly born of concern for justice and honor, greed regards sufficient possessions, gluttony is about food, vainglory seeks the approval of others. Vice happens when our pursuit of these good things gets twisted, that is, when we try to make them fill gaps and needs in our hearts that only God can fill, and when we define happiness in terms of them, rather than appreciating them as (finite) blessings from God. — Rebecca Konyndyk DeYoung, Glittering Vices: A New Look at the Seven Deadly Sins and Their Remedies

What angers Jesus?

Glittering Vices by Rebecca DeYoung is worth your time. I am working my way through this book with the Renovare Book Club. DeYoung has us wrestle with the issues of life that can truly trip us up. One of the vices is anger. How do we deal with anger in our lives?

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Become the flame

I am going through the Renovare Book Club this season and the next few weeks is a journey through Glittering Vices: A New Look at the Seven Deadly Sins and Their Remedies, by Rebecca DeYoung.This particular week is on “vainglory”.

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Reading Holy Scripture

If you will profit by reading Scripture, read humbly, simply, and faithfully, and never desire to gain by your reading the name of the learned. Ask gladly and heed humbly the saying of saints, and do not disdain the parables of the ancient Fathers, for they were not spoken without great cause. — Thomas A’ Kempis, The Imitation of Christ

On Living Well

Well-ordered living is not to be belittled, for it is good and comes from God, but a clean conscience and a virtuous life are much better and more to be desired. Because some men study to have learning rather than to live well, they err many times, and bring forth little good fruit or none. — Thomas A’ Kempis, The Imitation of Christ

Lead me into deeper self-examination, Lord

“Oh, how we need a deeper musing on our perennial knack for disobedience and God’s unbounded habit of mercy. Oh, how we need a richer contemplation on that Life that is life indeed and that shows us the way so we may follow in his steps. Oh, how we need a fuller meditation on that death that sets us free. And, oh, how we need a more profound experience of that resurrection that empowers us to obey Christ in all things.” — Richard Foster, Longing for God 

Restore to me the sense of wonder

This week we’ve received the news of the transition of Eugene Peterson. I have been deeply impacted by his life and work and continue to feel his impact that will last long past his time on this earth.

I’m also working my way through a biography of Dallas Willard, another spiritual giant in my life who continues his walk with Christ in the very presence of the Savior as well. Read more