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Showing posts with the label Life-Changing Love

“But whatever is hidden cannot be loved.”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God's Love from Your Head to Your Heart (p. 188). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
But for so many of us we feel that we won’t be loved if we don’t hide.  As John says, “I hide because I’m afraid that if the full truth about me is known I won’t be loved. But whatever is hidden cannot be loved. I can only be loved to the extent that I am known. I can only be fully loved if I am fully known. When I hide parts of myself, I seek to convince another person I am better than I am. If I’m a good enough hider, I may get away with it. The other person may express affection and love for me. But always comes the voice inside me: Yes, but if you knew the truth about me, if you saw the hidden places, you would not love me. You love the person you think I am. You do not love the real me, for you do not know the real me.”
But John goes on to say, “In Phantom of the Op…

“Our universe is a perfectly safe place to be.”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God's Love from Your Head to Your Heart (p. 166). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. David C. Cook. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
Here is the context of this thought.  John says, “Dallas Willard writes that Jesus lived a life of utter trust because he understood his Father to be unfailingly competent and wholly devoted. Here is the striking result: ‘With this magnificent God positioned among us, Jesus brings the assurance that our universe is a perfectly safe place for us to be.’”
John says, “A mother wakes up during a thunderstorm. She hurries to her son’s room after a particularly bright flash of lightning, knowing he will be terrified. To her surprise, he is standing at a window. ‘I was looking outside,’ he says, ‘and you’ll never guess what happened. God took my picture.’ He was convinced God was at work and therefore that the universe was a perfectly safe place f…

“We also need to stay close to those who might be called ‘grace-providing’ people.”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God's Love from Your Head to Your Heart (p. 145). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
That is so true.  As John says, “We need some people who accept us, welcome us, and love us, no matter what. I need some grace-providers. You do too. You need them because you have other kinds of people in your life. You have some ‘grace-impaired’ people in your life, who will judge you and critique you and remind you of your raggedness in ways that will tear you down.”
He then says, “How do you recognize these grace-providers? Grace-providers notice things about you; they pay attention to your heart and life. Grace-providers speak truthfully to you — both easy words and hard ones. Grace-providers are not people who only say what you want to hear, but they speak the truth in love. Grace-providers simply never cease to love you. They see beneath the surface; they see the …

“Perhaps your marriage has become a desert experience.”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God'sLove from Your Head to Your Heart (p. 120). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
I know this is true of a lot of marriages.  It seems the romance is gone.  There just is no more emotion. 
John shares, “An elderly couple lies in bed. She is not satisfied with the distance between them. She reminds him, ‘When we were young, you used to hold my hand in bed.’ He hesitates, but in a few moments a wrinkled hand snakes across the bed and grasps hers. She is not satisfied. ‘When we were young, you used to cuddle right up next to me.’ More serious hesitation now. But eventually, with a few groans, he laboriously turns his body and cradles hers as best he can. She is not satisfied. ‘When we were young, you used to nibble on my ear.’ Loud sigh. He throws back the covers and bolts out of bed. She is somewhat hurt by this. ‘Where are you going?’ ‘To get my teeth.…

“Are we there, yet?”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God'sLove from Your Head to Your Heart (p. 111). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
A few weeks back, our middle aged granddaughter and I were heading across LA to Monterey Park to pick up Gigi, her grandma and my wife, from work.  Now the going to pick her up is probably to most difficult trip each day I take.  LA traffic at that time of the day can be a challenge and it was that day so Addison was asking me, “Papa, are we there yet?”  Now I can be an annoying Papa but also a fun Papa.  So we played the game of, “No, we’re here right now but not there, yet.”  We had a fun time back and forth, together.
Now I love the app, Waze.  It looks at the traffic and it doesn’t take you straight to where you want to go but it takes you the best possible way.  During the busy traffic times it takes you off the Freeway onto other roads.  It can really be an interest…

“Learn to delight in imperfect gifts.”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God's Love from Your Head to Your Heart (p. 108). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
Do realize one of the main differences between us and God is this fact?  I mean if the food isn’t perfect, we gripe.  What about the music at church or even the Pastor’s message?  It is so easy for us to pick at it and not be grateful.  What about our house, our car, our job, our wife/husband, our kids or our body? 
John says, “I must learn to be grateful for all the ‘slightly imperfect’ gifts in my life. If I withhold my gratitude in hopes of receiving the perfect spouse, child, body, or birthday present, I will never be grateful at all.”  Do you realize that?  “I will never be grateful at all.”
But he then says, “God himself chooses to delight in imperfect gifts — in you and me. Even though our hearts are flawed and shadowed, even though we give them tentatively and wi…

“We are each one of us responsible for our own house.”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God's Love from Your Head to Your Heart (p. 81). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
Now it is so easy for us to live life and have things go wrong and want to play the blame game.  It’s not my fault, it’s _____’s fault. But blaming really is to be lame.  We are each responsible for our own house.  But we really do love to blame our parents, our boss, the government, our circumstances and even God.  But “we are each one of us responsible for our own house” or character or soul. We are all of us constructing a life.
John says, “Every commitment I make, every friendship I enter, every skill that I cultivate or neglect, every promise I honor or break, becomes a part of my house. You are constructing your life. The quality of the choices you make will determine the quality of your character, your soul.”
Larry also says, “Some people are so afraid of being disa…

“The church is a place for people who need do-overs. That is what God does.”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God's Love from Your Head to Your Heart (p. 73). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
We all need do-overs, don’t we?  Paul over in Romans says, “All have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory.”  All is a universal term.  Everyone has sinned.  We all have fallen short.  We all need a do-over.  We all need to take a mulligan.
But so many of us look at our failures and just want to give up.  I’ve sinned, I don’t deserve a do-over.  I blew it.  But that is not the way God looks at it.
John tells a story. “Warren Bennis wrote about a promising junior executive at IBM who was involved in a risky venture for the company and ended up losing ten million dollars in the gamble. He was called into the office of Tom Watson Sr., the founder and leader of IBM for forty years, a business legend. The junior exec, overwhelmed with guilt and fear, blurted out: ‘I guess you’…

“I see Jesus in a distressing disguise.”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God'sLove from Your Head to Your Heart(p. 36). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
John shares, “Someone once asked Mother Teresa what she saw as she walked the streets of Calcutta where the poorest of the poor lived; what she saw when she looked at the orphans, the starving, the dying. This is what she said: ‘I see Jesus in a distressing disguise.’”  But the truth is that is not what we see.  Really to us too many times those people are invisible.  They aren’t even there. 
But God through Jesus sees thing so differently.  John says, “God pays close attention to us: ‘Even the hairs of your head are numbered,’ Jesus said. We often take it as a sign of love if someone is able to notice a haircut or a change in hairstyle. (By the same token, the failure to notice a change in coiffure is one of the leading causes of conflict in marriage.) God has numbered ev…

“The test of love is that it gives even when there is no expectation of a return.”

A thought by John Ortberg (2015-05-05) from his book, Life-Changing Love: Moving God's Love from Your Head to Your Heart(p. 24). Zondervan. Kindle Edition. (Click on the title to go to Amazon.com to buy the book.)
John shares a story by Anne Lamott. It was “of an eight-year-old boy who had a younger sister dying of leukemia. He was told that without a blood transfusion she would die. His parents asked if they could test his blood to see if it was compatible with hers. He said sure. They tested, and it was a match. Then they asked if he would give his sister a pint of his own blood, that it could be her only chance of living. He said he would have to think about it overnight. The next day he told his parents he was willing to donate the blood. They took him to the hospital; he was put on a gurney beside his six-year-old sister. Both were hooked up to IVs. A nurse took a pint of blood from the boy, which was given to his sister. The boy lay in silence as the blood that would save his…