Quote Title Quotation Source
Are You In or Out? There are three possible lives: one entirely under law; one entirely under grace; one a mixed life, partly law and partly grace. It is this last against which Paul warns in Romans. It is this which is so common and works such ruin among Christians. Let us ask ourselves if this is not our position and the cause of our low state. Andrew Murray – The Two Convenants, 1898, copyright 2005 CLC Ministries International
The Enemy Has A Bag Full of Tricks You may be a hard sell, and I pray God you are; but do not think for a moment that Satan will be easily turned away. If you do not like his box of temptations, then he will reach into his sack of accusations and display them so cleverly you will think he brings them at God’s request! William Gurnall – The Christian in Complete Armour – Volume 1 of 3, circa 1655, copyright 1986 by World Challenge, Inc.
Accountability Defined The more you know, the better you understand, the more severely you will be judged, unless your life is also holy. Thomas aKempis – The Imitation of Christ circa. 1420 © 1999 Bridge-Logos Publishers
Balancing Humility and Pride at the Summit The distance between true love and horrific pride is virtually infintesimal. True love seeks, with sincerity of heart, zeal and unselfish desire to please or benefit another. Its sole intent is outward toward others without thought of self or personal welfare. This is how we can be “like God”. This is the reason Christ will say to us, “well done… ” Right now, right here, at the apex of spiritual experience is our Temptation. Now the Accuser comes and whispers, “Yes, you did good didn’t you? Yes, you did because you are so good.” This is the place where we must say “get thee behind me”, for if we do not, we fall from that mountain and are dashed on the rocks below. Safer to not get up on a mountain and to chain our soul to the level ground of Humility. Tom Van Hoogen
Entering the Prayer Zone How, then, should one pray? How should one dispose oneself and act? That is what I now intend to discuss a bit. Every good person, when he intends to pray, should gather together to himself his external senses and look into his heart and mind to see that they are well focused on God. A person can do this in the highest, lowest, or intermediate manner. And to this end it is good for a person to examine very carefully what is most suitable and what most moves him to proper, true devotion; and let him then make use of this manner of work. But you should realize that whatever good person wants to engage in true, proper prayer, so that his prayer will truly be heard, must have already turned his back on all temporal and external things and on whatever is not divine, whether it be friend or foe, and on all vanity, whether it be clothes or jewels or anything of which God is not the true source. And he must separate his words and actions from all disorder, internal or external. John Tauler – Sermon 39, circa 1340; excerpted from The Essential Writings of Christian Mysticism by Bernard McGuinn copyright 2006 by Random House, Inc.
Words From a Higher Source The prophet is human, yet he employs notes one octave too high for our ears. He experiences moments that defy our understanding. He is neither a singing saint nor a moralizing poet , but an assaulter of the mind. Often his words begin to burn where conscience ends. Abraham Joshua Heschel – The Prophets © 1962 by Abraham Joshua Heschel, published by Hendrickson Publishers
Unseen Results Porphyry lived at a time when this universal way for the liberation of the soul which is none other than the Christian religion was, by divine permission, attacked by idolaters, demon worshippers, and earthly rulers in order that the number of martyrs might be completed and consecrated and by martyrs I mean witnesses of the truth whose mission it was to show that all bodily sufferings must be endured when it is a question of remaining faithful to religion and of offering testimony to the truth… He did not understand that these persecutions, which impressed him and which he feared to suffer if he chose this way, tended rather to establish this religion more solidly and to commend it to others. St. Augustine – The City of God, circa 400, copyright 1950 by Fathers of the Church
God Is Not Far Off, As Some Consider Far Everything that comes from God s hand produces good fruit. Sometimes the annoyances that make you long for solitude are better for producing humility than the most complete solitude could be. Use the circumstances of each moment to the fullest. Sometimes an exciting book, or an inspiring devotional time, or a deep conversation about spiritual matters will make you feel extremely satisfied with yourself. You will believe that you are farther along than you really are. Talking about the cross is not at all the same as experiencing it. So remember this: Do not seek God as if He were far off in an ivory castle. He is found in the middle of the events of our everyday life. Look past the obstacles and find Him. Fenelon – The Seeking Heart, circa 1690, copyright Christian Books Publishing House
Put Up or Shut Up The friends charge Job with a lack of seeing the obvious, and Job replies, I am facing things you have not begun to dream about; why don t you either plunge into the deeps with me, or else keep silent, if you cannot tell me what to do? Oswald Chambers – The Complete Works of Oswald Chambers
Shaken, Not Stirred The nearer the Cross came to you, the deeper it entered into you, were you the more disposed to admire yourself? There is no harm in your feeling pleased with yourself because you were able to thrill to these human heroisms; but if the impression Christ makes upon you is to leave you more satisfied with yourself, more proud of yourself for being able to respond, He has to get a great deal nearer to you yet. You need to be I will use the Scottish phrase which old ministers used to apply to a young minister when he had preached a thoughtful and interesting discourse you need to be well shaken over the mouth of the pit. P. T. Forsyth – The Work of Christ, Wipf & Stock, 1910
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