Sunday, January 30, 2011

Spiritual Disciplines: Chapter 3, Salvation is Life

We’ve relegated God’s life in us to special times and places and states of mind. And we’ve become so used to this style of life, we are hardly aware of it. When we think of “taking Christ into the workplace” or “keeping Christ in the home,” we are making our faith into a set of special acts. The “specialness” of such acts just underscores the point—that being a Christian, being Christ’s, isn’t thought of as a normal part of life. ~Dallas Willard

        Is Christ a part of my everyday life? Do I consider Him in every aspect of life?

What does it mean to be “saved?” What do people understand when they hear “salvation,” “redemption,” and other New Testament terms used to refer to God’s action in restoring women and men to their intended place in his world? Is it possible that we’ve been robbed of the words’ true and coherent concepts? ~Dallas Willard
        Salvation is not a one time experience alone. It is an ongoing aspect of life. Salvation isn’t just about beginning a relationship with Christ, but learning from his entire life experience and aligning our lives with His.

For some strange reason, though, we find it easy to put our minds away when it comes to religion, when it comes to bringing the same type of care to our faith as we would to other subjects. But, in reality, we need to be even more careful with our religious teachers and theologians. ~Dallas Willard

One specific errant concept has done inestimable harm to the church and God’s purposes with us—and that is the concept that has restricted the Christian idea of salvation to mere forgiveness of sins. ~Dallas Willard

The cross act was first narrowly interpreted as mere vicarious suffering and then mistaken for the whole of the redemptive action of God. ~Dallas Willard

        What else has Christ called us to in our relationship with Him?

We’ll never be able to make clear just exactly what it is that our lives have to do with our “salvation.” Futile efforts of believers through the centuries somehow to tack obedience—or “works” or “law”—onto grace, or to insist that Christ cannot be our Savior without also being our Lord, are a historical
proof of this point. ~Dallas Willard

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Settlers of Catan and kettle popcorn

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Spirit of the Disciplines: Chapter 2

But an important problem remains. Our tangible need and hunger for the spiritual disciplines do not by themselves make clear why we need them and how they fit into God’s creative and redemptive action upon and within human life....what resulted was a general failure to understand or accept the wonderful, positive functions of those disciplines as part of the course of the human personality’s full redemption. ~Dallas Willard

Challenge in the months ahead: make the disciplines a part of my life, embraced to the fullest potential - but not from a works based approach. I

Willard, Dallas. "The Secret of the Easy Yoke." The Spirit of the Disciplines: Understanding How God Changes Lives. San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 1991. Print.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Spirit of the Disciplines: Making Theology of the

“Have we done what is necessary to bring the earnest convert into his or her possessions as a child of God, as a brother or sister of Jesus Christ in the new life?” Dallas Willard

“Are we considering what it means for the individual believer to “grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ,” as 2 Peter 3:18 expresses it?” Dallas Willard

What is the right approach to making disciples from a spirit-led perspective? In teaching methods, we cannot present a formula to grow in the knowledge but crowd His Spirit out of our time pursuing Him. In doing so, we approach the personal participation of discipleship from a works-based system. Our reluctance to the spiritual disciplines has allowed room for being led more of His Spirit, but has also left many believers at a place of infancy. Merely finding a balanced approach is not our answer. Inviting Him to plot our participation in the disciplines and this life of discipleship is of utmost importance.

Willard, Dallas. "The Secret of the Easy Yoke." The Spirit of the Disciplines: Understanding How God Changes Lives. San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 1991. Print.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Bride and Bridegroom Relationship - January 23, 2011

A son walks into inheritance, but a bride builds the inheritance with the groom. The bride and bridegroom build the house, the son walks in it. Walk in the bride relationship with God.

When God created society, created Adam - it isn’t good for him to be alone, He gave Adam a bride - not children.

We limit the relationship to the honeymoon. We think about soaking and initial consummation of the marriage. The honeymoon isn’t the foundation of the relationship .

Three Qualities of the relationship with the bridegroom (for men this is a challenge):

  1. You of the opportunity to be most real. Will anyone else see every aspect of me? Are we willing to open up about everything? How transparent can we be?
  2. Support system like no other. Genuine interest and desire to see the other released into the best they can be. I want you to receive the fullness of life. Create a theme, framework, vision for each other to operate from for each to shine.
  3. Be the voice of God to each other. Carry out His will into our relationships with one another. When you see the bride, you know that there is a bridegroom. He speaks, we make it audible in the earth. How many times to we pray for and speak life into each others lives?
What is forged in the hard times is for ultimate victory.

1 Thess 3:3 That no one [of you] should be disturbed and beguiled and led astray by these afflictions and difficulties [to which I have referred]. For you yourselves know that this is [unavoidable in our position, and must be recognized as] our appointed lot.

Saturday, January 22, 2011


Spirit of the Disciplines: Chapter 1

Matthew 11:29 Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls. 30 For My yoke is wholesome (useful, good--not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.

Christianity has not so much been tried and found wanting, as it has been found difficult and left untried. G.K. Chesterton

The “cost of discipleship,” though it may take all we have, is small when compared to the lot of those who don’t accept Christ’s invitation to be a part of his company in The Way of life. ~Dallas Willard

To many, Jesus’ words are frankly bewildering. We hear them often quoted, because the idea they express is obviously one that attracts and delights, but there seems to be something about the way we approach them, something about what we think it means to walk with Christ and obey him, that prevents most of us from entering into the reality which they express. The ease, lightness, and power of his Way we rarely enjoy, much less see, as the pervasive and enduring quality of our street-level human existence. ~Dallas Willard

All of our reasonings cannot, however, remove the thought that Jesus calls us to follow him—to follow him now, not after death. ~Dallas Willard

A successful performance at a moment of crisis rests largely and essentially upon the depths of a self wisely and rigorously prepared in the totality of its being—mind and body. ~Dallas Willard

It is part of the misguided and whimsical condition of humankind that we so devoutly believe in the power of effort-at-the-moment-of-action alone to accomplish what we want and completely ignore the need for character change in our lives as a whole. The general human failing is to want what is right and important, but at the same time not to commit to the kind of life that will produce the action we know to be right and the condition we want to enjoy. This is the feature of human character that explains why the road to hell is paved with good intentions. We intend what is right, but we avoid the life that would make it reality. ~Dallas Willard

We cannot behave “on the spot” as he did and taught if in the rest of our time we live as everybody else does. The “on the spot” episodes are not the place where we can, even by the grace of God, redirect unchristlike but ingrained tendencies of action toward sudden Christlikeness. Our efforts to take control at that moment will fail so uniformly and so ingloriously that the whole project of following Christ will appear ridiculous to the watching world. We’ve all seen this happen. ~Dallas Willard

The secret of the easy yoke is simple, actually. It is the intelligent, informed, unyielding resolve to live as Jesus lived in all aspects of his life, not just in the moment of specific choice or action. ~Dallas Willard

Willard, Dallas. "The Secret of the Easy Yoke." The Spirit of the Disciplines: Understanding How God Changes Lives. San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 1991. 1-10. Print.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

I want a fluffy unicorn! #despicableme

Friday, January 07, 2011

Homemade perogies

Monday, January 03, 2011

Teething: nom nom nom