Sunday, May 12, 2013

A quote from Dallas Willard's book "Knowing Christ Today"

Here is a quote from Dallas Willard.
  How are we to think about Jesus’s presence today? No doubt volumes could be written on that question, and have been. But the simple fact is that Jesus Christ is present in this world, the only world we have, and in many ways. His teachings, even mangled and broken, have an incredible power to disrupt human systems, including the ones that claim to own him. He is the misfit and thus is available to all who would seek him. His crucifixion and resurrection announce the end of human systems and stand in judgment over them. He is the man on the cross calling us to join him there. He makes himself available to individuals who hear of him and seek him. In many forms both inside and outside the church, with its traditions, symbolisms, and literature, he is simply here among us. He is in his people, but he does not allow himself to be boxed in by them. He calls to us by just being here in our midst. There is nothing like him. The people in the churches also have the option of finding him and following him into his kingdom, though that may rarely be what they are doing.

          For many today who think of themselves as educated, historical studies and “higher criticism”—perhaps something they call a “scientific” outlook—have made the person and teachings of Jesus problematic. From where they start, he seems a questionable resource for actually living their lives. He may become for them a scholarly football to kick around or to ignore. But he does not go away. In spite of all, he himself is still available in this world, and beyond all historical issues and confusions there stands a strong if somewhat hazy impression of what he stood for. To come to know him and to clarify who he really is, people have only to stand for what he stood for, as best they can, and to do so by inviting him to take their life into his life and walk with them. If they do just this with humility and openness—which everyone knows to be his manner of life—they will know him more and more as they take his life to be their life. In this way they do not have to “know” at the start. It is enough to venture on the kingdom of God and its King. “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.” (Acts 2:21)  
(p 146-147)

Dallas Willard (1935-2013)

Knowing Christ Today (2009,New York, HarperCollins)

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Prayed, Pray, Praise!

I took a quick trip today to re-charge my “spiritual batteries” at Denver Seminary. I find that if life is really getting to me, or I need to get a writing assignment finished, I escape to the library on campus.

I’ve been feeling so challenged in trying to get college work finished, and  trying to work, barely making any money, not being able to pay bills, and then receiving the news that I was turned down for the scholarships I applied for; this has been a really bad week.

I am in the midst of so much chaos that I have been feeling like God just doesn’t care about me.
He is not answering my prayers.
He is just not with me.

Today was a wonderful visit. I was listened to, prayed over, with promises to keep me bathed in prayer while I search for full time work to re-fund my life going into fall semester, as I am getting closer to my graduation.

I also finished a final essay for one of my courses, which takes some of the pressure off.

As I bundled up to walk the mile back to the train station in Littleton, the snow was wind-driven right in my face, and I muttered under my breath, “Gee God, a ride would be really nice today.” I sighed, and started trudging down the hill to Hudson Gardens and the light to cross South Santa Fe.

Just then, a small SUV passed me, stopped, and the reverse lights came on. A young man rolled down his window and said “Where are you headed?” I told him that I was going to the train station. He said “I’ll drive you, if you show me the way.” I got in the front seat and said thanks, and asked him his name.

He said “Emanuel.”
God with us.

What a great day!