Peter was convinced that his relationship with Jesus was dependent upon his own abilities and qualities. How unfortunate that we are often convinced of the same thing. Manning writes, “We try to live so that God will love us instead of living because God already loves us.”
In This Episode: There comes a time when we come to the point in our lives when we ask, “Is this all there is?” Brennan discusses three crises that precipitate us asking this question: Crisis of Hope, Crisis of Faith, and Crisis of Love.
Jesus insists that the Father is crazy with love for us. He didn’t say that it would be nice if the Father loved us. He said the Father does love us.
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People prefer the known to the unknown. People tend to fear what they do not know. The many “what if” questions we ask, as Manning describes, cause us to take a second mortgage out on our house of fear. Fear denotes a feeling of punishment. Freedom does not. Fear holds many of us captive; yet, if we deny that we are held captive by fear, we will never be free from it. Freedom in Christ is the freedom that comes from not having to be controlled by the “what if” questions of life.
Manning writes, “Counterfeit grace is as commonplace as fake furs, phony antiques, paste jewelry, and sawdust hotdogs. The temptation of the age is to look good without being good.” In our attempt to mask who we are to others, we unknowingly mask who we are to ourselves. This holds us captive.
At the end of his life, Abraham Heschel said, “Never once in my life did I ask God for success or wisdom or power or fame. I asked for wonder, and He gave it to me.” Could it be that the wonder of God is right there in the thick of our daily lives? What are the distractions preventing you from noticing the wonder of God’s grace and mercy?