Saturday, November 22, 2014

Gleanings from Vanishing Grace by Philip Yancey

Kathleen Norris writes about a "cocaine whore" who would sleep with anyone who could provide her with booze or cocaine, or just show her the slightest bit of attention. She found AA, then God, then church. Soon she was signing up for everything and volunteering for every church related ministry as well as signing up for committees that others had to be begged to join. Her pastor wondered if Christians don't underrate promiscuity. Because she was still a promiscuous person, still loving without much discrimination.

An alcoholic said that when he arrives late to church people turn around and scowl or give him smug looks as if righteousness was associated with being on time to church. At AA, if he is late, people jump up to greet me, he said. They know my desperate need for them was greater than my desperate need for alcohol.

In the bulletin of an urban church in Denver:

Married, divorced, single here, it's one family that mingles here.
conservative or liberal here, we all gotta give a little here.
doubt or believe here, we all can receive here.
gay or straight here, there's no hate here.
women or men here, everyone can serve here.
whatever your race here, for all of us grace here.
In imitation of the ridiculous love Almighty God has for each of us and for all of us,
let us live and love without labels.

Ignatius of Loyola defined sin as refusing to believe that God wants my happiness and fulfillment.

Eugene Peterson: In Hebrew the root word for salvation means deliverance from an existence that has become cramped, compressed, and confined.