Prayer, Creativity & Faith

so I’ve been thinking…

I’ve been busy editing some of the final chapters of my book and planning my next one, so I haven’t written many words lately. But I have been reading…

Here are just a few things that got me thinking. Thought I’d share and see if they did the same for you. If you come across anything interesting, please send it my way. I love this kind of stuff!

QUOTE: “This is the Bible we have, the Bible where God meets us. Not a book kept at safe distance from the human drama. Not a fragile Bible that has to be handled with care lest it crumble in our hands. Not a book that has to be defended 24/7 to make sure our faith doesn’t dissolve. In other words, not an artificially well-behaved Bible that gives false comfort, but the Holy Bible, the Word of God, with wrinkles, complexities, unexpected maneuvers, and downright strangeness. This is the Bible God has given his people. This Bible is worth reading and paying attention to, because this is the Bible God uses, as he always has, to point his readers to deeper trust in him. We are free to walk away from this invitation, of course, but we are not free to make the Bible in our own image. What the Bible looks like is God’s call, not ours.” SOURCE

RESPONSE: I love reading Rachel Held Evans’s blog… always lots to think about. Before I’d even finished this post, though, I clicked over to Amazon and ordered Peter Enns’s book. Can’t wait to read it. Even if (especially if) it challenges me.

QUOTE: “The path to holiness seems so well marked; just look at all the sermons, books, and blogs that will help us find it. We might march down that path, good intentions in hand, and think, it’s just so simple.

We keep telling ourselves our hearts can’t possibly be shredding like tissue paper. Scripture reading or prayer or church or small groups work for everyone else. Why not me?

If we stop, we might have to closely examine what’s grieving us. We might have to consider our fragility.

Yet God made our hearts vulnerable. He knows what it’s like to be pierced. Perhaps, we might follow our broken hearts, instead of our self-discipline. Maybe we could lift those ripped edges up and examine the questions they pose.

Maybe we could give ourselves permission to listen to the cry of those questions, rather than shaming ourselves for having them.” SOURCE

RESPONSE: The author, Heather Caliri, is writing about how hard it is for some people to read the Bible. Inquiring minds want to know. What are your experiences? Is reading the Bible a comfort to you or does it bring up fear, inadequacy, confusion, etc?

QUOTE: Love this response written to an atheist telling him how to pray: “I want you to pray for your brother right now. As a gesture to your grandmother — who, if she didn’t exist, neither would you. I want you to pray right now, just for the sake of challenging yourself. I want you to find a place alone, and kneel down — against all your stubborn tendencies telling you not to — and close your eyes and think of one concentrated thought: your brother.

I want you to think of your love for him. Your fear of him dying. Your feeling of powerlessness. Your feelings of anger and frustration. Your feelings of confusion. You don’t need to ask to get anything. You don’t need to try and fix anything. You don’t need to get any answers. Just focus on every moment you’ve ever had with your brother. Reflect on every memory, from years ago, and even from just earlier today. Let the feelings wash over you. Let the feelings take you away from yourself. Let them bring you closer to him. Let yourself be overwhelmed by the unyielding and uncompromising emotion of him until you lose yourself in it.

Think about him more than you’ve ever thought about anyone before. Think about him more deeply and with more detail than you’ve ever thought about anything. Think about how incredible it is that you have a brother — that he exists at all. Focus on him until you feel like your soul is going to burst. Tell him in your heart and soul that you love him. Feel that love pouring out of you from all sides. Then get up and go be with him and your family. And you can tell your grandmother that you prayed for your brother.”  SOURCE

RESPONSE: Does this seem to capture the idea of prayer to you? Why or why not?

One Response to “so I’ve been thinking…”

  1. Well, I’m just amazed to be included with these amazing quotes. (And I want to read Peter Enns book too). Good luck with the final stages of your book! And thanks for reading 🙂

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