Hello out there,
I am currently reading through Colin Powell’s autobiography which means that I don’t have much else on my mind. The book is 612 pages long and I am currently at page 333, over halfway there! I am also reading Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring. I am almost done with the first book and then, naturally, I will continue through the other two. I love reading. It allows me to escape from whatever is happening in my own world and to experience something new and hopefully enlightening.
We are still awaiting the arrival of our first child, Constance Elizabeth. I have no idea when she will come. Today is her due date according to our calculations using the menstrual cycle method. The doctor and ultrasound lady said that her due date is December 10th. I am going to stick with our calculation of the 7th since that seems more certain than taking three measurements, doing some calculus, and casting bones into a shallow pan of goats blood.
I guess I will leave you with something to ponder. The following is an excerpt from Brennan Manning’s book, The Ragamuffin Gospel:
“Though the Scriptures insist on God’s initiative in the work of salvation – that by grace we are saved, that the Tremendous Lover has taken to the chase – our spirituality often starts with self, not God. Personal responsibility has replaced personal response. We talk about acquiring virtue as if it were a skill that can be attained like good handwriting or a well-grooved golf swing. in the penitential seasons we focus on overcoming our weaknesses, getting rid of our hang-ups, and reaching Christian maturity. We sweat through various spiritual exercises as if they were designed to produce a Christian Charles Atlas.”
“Though lip service is paid to the gospel of grace, many Christians live as if it is only personal discipline and self-denial that will mold the perfect me. The emphasis is on what I do rather than on what God is doing…
…The Good News means we can stop lying to ourselves. The sweet sound of amazing grace saves us from the necessity of self-deception. It keeps us from denying that though Christ was victorious, the battle with lust, greed, and pride still rages within us. As a sinner who has been redeemed, I can acknowledge that I am often unloving, irritable, angry, and resentful with those closest to me. When I go to church I can leave my white hat at home and admit I have failed. God not only loves me as I am, but also knows me as I am. Because of this I don’t need to apply spiritual cosmetics to make myself presentable to Him. I can accept ownership of my poverty and powerlessness and neediness.”
The book is an amazingly beautiful look into the Grace of God. It is a reminder to myself that God does not look at me by man’s standards but by His standards. I am no better than the prostitute, drunkard, pornographic actor, child molester, or rapist. That is hard to grasp for each of us but it is the truth. “All have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God.” Therefore, live your life in such a way that others can see in your life and desire for themselves the redemption that you have found in the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth.
Boris the Illusionist