Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Navigating the Spiritual Life

Terry Walling in his book, Stuck, Navigating the Transitions of Life and Leadership, says: "There are three defining moments critical to the development of the Christ follower. God often uses three transitions in particular to interrupt the normalcy of life, and shape life in new ways to count for the extension of his kingdom." He calls these transitions Awakening, Deciding, and Finishing.

Awakening "It embodies the ascent to purpose. At some point, Christ followers must step over the line and believe the truth that there is something more to life. They begin to believe that there is more to life than day-to-day existence. In fact, there is a God-embedded purpose in each life, including their own. But this purpose requires a pursuit."

Deciding "involves the push and the rush of propelling one's life of self-imposed boundaries out into an intentional life of meaning and service to the King. Life is now viewed differently -- it is viewed from God's perspective. The Christ follower joins the grand narrative. Life lived differently now becomes the consuming passsion of life. But it is not just about a contribution; it quickly evolves into a journey about intimacy. The knowledge of God and the pursuit of the Holy now become an even greater passion than the pursuit of a task."

Finishing "can only occur because of the first two. This transition involves a release from all that is familiar, and the convergent life that culminates in the knowledge that 'for this I was born.' It is about courage and trust. It is not about imitating the successful, but about being content with being fully a person God has known since before birth (Psalm 139)."

Isn't that good stuff? I usually want to run from the transitions life brings my way rather than facing them. But if I will just let go, God will direct me to the fulfulling of His purpose for the Kingdom. When I don't let go, it just takes God longer to get me to let go!!

Quotes to reflect on....

Psalm 104:13 -- "I will sing to the Lord all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live. May my meditation be pleasing to Him, as I rejoice in the Lord."

C. S. Lewis -- "We may ignore, but we can nowhere evade the presence of God. The world is crowded with Him. He walks everywhere incognito. And the incognito is not always hard to penetrate. The real labor is to attend. In fact to come awake. Still more, to remain awake."

Dietrich Bonhoeffer -- "The road to faith passes through obedience to the call of Jesus. Unless a definite step is demanded, the call vanishes into thin air."

Oswald Sanders -- "The difficulty with the majority of us is that we will not seek to apprehend the vision; we get a glimpse of it and leave it alone... It is not a question of intellectual discenment or of knowing how to present the vision to others, but seeking to apprehend the vision so that it may apprehened us."

Oswald Chambers -- "The bravery of God is trusting us! You say -- 'But He has been unwise to choose me, because there is nothing in me; I am not of any value.' That is why He chose you. As long as you think there is something in you, He cannot choose you because you have ends of your own to serve; but if you have let Him bring you to the end of your self-sufficiency then He can choose you to go with Him to Jerusalem, and that will mean the fulfillment of purposes which He does not discuss with you."

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