Our Thirst for Grace

Grace only sticks to our imperfections. Those who can’t accept their imperfections can’t accept their grace either. pg 45

I’ve known this to be true. However for a long time I lived as though it wasn’t. I lived hiding my imperfections, certain my hiding would get me closer to God. Certain that he couldn’t handle my uncleanliness. It was a warped view that I fell into as I worked trying to be the best I could so God would like me.

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I look at those ideas now and think how ridiculous! But I suppose that’s the beauty of movement. That’s the beauty of God. He comes and meets us in a place where we least expect it, but most require it.

Grace is the only consistent. I don’t want to miss it.

* * * * *

This post was inspired by the book Scary Close by Donald Miller.

I’m blogging my way through the book as I read a chapter per day and share some insights as I go.

At the end, I’ll be giving away one book to one person who is a subscriber. So if you aren’t on the list, Subscribe today. Join in the fun and never miss a post!

THE OTHER POSTS REFLECTING ON SCARY CLOSE:
  1. What the Heck is Success Anyway? Chapter 1
  2. Speaking the Truth (in) to People: Chapter 2
  3. The Story We’re Telling: Chapter 3
  4. Covering Our Shameful Past by Performing for the Crowd: Chapter 4

Covering Our Shameful Past by Performing For the Crowd

I grew up playing footy. To play at the elite level was one of the few dreams I remember from my childhood. I never realised my dream for a few reasons. I’m ok with it now. It wasn’t always that way though.

By the time I was mid twenties I didn’t really enjoy playing as much as I did when I was chasing my dream. I no longer had a purpose in playing and the dream I was chasing was gone. I got to a point where I felt completely fed up with the training, the time commitment and the playing.

I’d had enough.

shame past

Shame has a funny way of making us do stuff. It’s a powerful emotion that won’t let go until its made you feel like a complete and utter failure.

Missing my dream made me feel like a failure. I felt ashamed of all the energy I’d put in, only for it to equal nothing.

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The Story We’re Telling

Sometimes the story we’re telling the world isn’t half as endearing as the one that lives inside us. pg 22

I’ve had a massive day.

I slept in past my 5.30am wake up which means I missed my writing pattern, and the epic day just meant I couldn’t be arsed writing tonight. But the quote above has stuck with me since I read it. There’s so much in there that I’m just letting it marinate.

And, I really couldn’t be stuffed trying to be all meaningful and write something important.

So I’ll just leave it with you.

This post was inspired by the book Scary Close by Donald Miller.

I’m blogging my way through the book as I read a chapter per day and share some insights as I go.

At the end, I’ll be giving away one book to one person who is a subscriber. So if you aren’t on the list, Subscribe today.  Join in the fun and never miss a post!

 HERE ARE THE OTHER POSTS REFLECTING ON SCARY CLOSE:
  1. What the Heck is Success Anyway? Chapter One
  2. Speaking the Truth (in) to People: Chapter Two

Speaking the Truth (in) to People

Our words hold incredible power. So often though, that power makes people feel pretty ordinary. We fail to realise that a simple word of encouragement can lift our spirits and give us the energy to keep going.

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Imagine yourself having just broken off an engagement and been through a string of bad relationships. Accountability partners are swirling and the words of guilt and shame abound by our so called friends.

Don was feeling pretty ordinary due to some failed relationships. He wondered if he had it in him to be a good friend, let alone find a life partner.

Enter his friend, Bob:

“You know what I’ve noticed about you, Don?” Bob said.

“What’s that, Bob?”

“I’ve noticed you’re good at relationships.”

I said nothing. I wasn’t sure I understood him correctly. Then he said it again, right into the silence of the phone.

“You’re good at relationships, Don,” he repeated. pg.12

I love that little interaction between Don and his best mate. No condemnation, no shame, no guilt, just some simple words of hope, completely opposing the reality of his current situation, and inspiring a future that Don’s friend was sure was still ahead for him.

I need to be more like that. I need to be more encouraging of someones future, choosing to overlook the reality of their current situation.

It’s what I’d want in friend, so I guess I need to be that friend first.

This post was inspired by the book Scary Close by Donald Miller.

I’m blogging my way through the book as I read a chapter per day and share some insights as I go.

At the end, I’ll be giving away one book to one person who is a subscriber. So if you aren’t on the list, Subscribe today.  Join in the fun and never miss a post!

here are the other posts reflecting on Scary Close:
  1. What the Heck is Success Anyway? Chapter One

What The Heck is Success Anyway?


Inspired by Scary Close, chapter 1…


Our world talks a lot about success. Success at home, success at work and success in our relationships. Yet, I really wonder if we know what success means. Do we really understand what makes an individual and a community successful?

success

It’s a question I’ve wrestled with over the past 12 months. It’s a question we ask the students I work with. It’s a question that if we are able to answer and clearly define a successful life, it sets in motion everything else we do. It sets in motion our motivation, our goals and the direction we go.

I think this is what Don was alluding to:

“What if some of the most successful people in the world got that way because their success was fueled by a misappropriated need for love? What if the people we consider to be great are actually the most broken?” pg.6

The way we measure our lives is through the lens of external success. Yet, what if success was measured in our ability to love and be loved? What if God views success as being less known by the masses, and well-known by the few? I’m sure most us weren’t born for fame. I’m certain most of couldn’t handle it. Even those who have achieved some sort of fame and success struggle with it. I think that’s because we weren’t born for fame.

For me, success is about peace and contentment. Being at peace and contented with my life. At peace with God and myself. Content with the direction my career is heading. Content with the relationships and people in my life. It doesn’t mean that I ‘settle‘, but as I pursue my life and the world I’m creating, I do it with a deep sense of peace and contentment. If I don’t feel at peace, I feel like I’ve failed.

It’s important we understand success and how we measure it. And as Don explains, maybe it is about mostly relationships and the way we use the days we are given.

“It’s true our lives can pass small and unnoticed by the masses, and we are no less dignified for having lived quietly. In fact, I’ve come to believe there’s something noble about doing with your life save offering love to a person who is offering it back.” pg.6

I love that quote! I love that maybe it is through the simple giving and receiving of love that we become dignified. I love that maybe if we just love our spouse and our kids then maybe that’s a noble enough task for God to be happy.

I know life has shifted a lot for me recently. Family, friends and relationships with people I love are becoming increasingly important.

And the external success that I may achieve is becoming less of a focus.

This post was inspired by the book Scary Close by Donald Miller.

I’m blogging my way through the book as I read a chapter per day and share what has impacted me as I go.

At the end, I’ll be giving away one book to one person who is a subscriber. So if you aren’t on the list, Subscribe today.  Join in the fun and never miss a post!