"Once we clearly acknowledge the soul, we can learn to hear it's cries. - Dallas Willard, Renovation Of The Heart."

It takes courage to pursue our dreams. It takes time and patience to unearth buried treasure. But I believe with all my heart that we must do both.


Abiding Monday

I read this a few days ago in "Listening To Your Life" by Frederick Buechner.

"What I began to see was that the Bible is not essentially, as I had always more or less supposed, a book of ethical principles, of moral exhortations, of cautionary tales about exemplary people, of uplifting thoughts - in fact, not really a religious book at all in the sense that most of the books you would be apt to find in a minister's study or reviewed in a special religion issue of the New York Times book section are religious. I saw it instead as a great, tattered compendium of writings, the underlying and unifying purpose of all of which is to show how God works through the Jacobs and Jabboks of history to make himself known to the world and to draw the world back to himself.

For all its vast diversity and unevenness, it is a book with a plot and a plot that can be readily stated. God makes the world in love. For one reason or another the world chooses to reject God. God will not reject the world but continues his mysterious and relentless pursuit of it to the end of time. That is what he is doing by choosing Israel to be his special people. That is what he is doing through all the passion and poetry and invective of the prophets. That is why history plays such a crucial part in the Old Testament - all those kings and renegades and battles and invasions and apostasies - because it was precisely through people like that and events like those that God was a work, as, later, in the New Testament, he was supremely at work in the person and event of Jesus Christ. Only "is at work" would be the more accurate way of putting it because......his work goes on still, of course, and at one and the same time the biblical past not only illumines the present but becomes itself part of that present, part of our own individual pasts. Until you can read the story of Adam and Eve, of Abraham and Sarah, of David and Bathsheba, as your own story, Muilenburg (one of Frederick's teachers) said, you have not really understood it. The Bible, as he presented it, is a book finally about ourselves, our own apostasies, our own battles and blessings........"

It is a love story!
A story of God's pursuit of us,
of me,
of you!
We are a people
as well as,
loving (as best as we can)
as Brennan Manning says, "A glorious ruin."

God continues to pursue.
I am thankful!



Butterfly Works said...

Oh Mary, Thank you for sharing your post today. It is so absolutely true....I can so much of the time take the Bible for granted and your message today was such a fresh approach...Just what I needed to start a new week....We are flawed for sure but isn't it wonderful that God has done all the work for us to beautiful and whole in his sight...We are kids of the Most High and so often I don't think of myself in that way...Thanks for the encouragement...
Hugs, Nancy

Anonymous said...

it's nice to know that others still hold a high regard for the bible, when many feel that it is an outdated, and invalid book.

and You'll also be happy to know that I am also your newest follower!

thanks for coming by ...ciao

Artistic Accents by Darla said...

I love that you share so much of this Mary! Thank you! I've always meant to read the bible from cover to cover but I haven't yet been able to master it! I tried reading Revelations once and while reading it, got ill......seriously ill (purely by coincidence!). I ended up in the hospital for a week with encephalitis! I never did get back to the bible. Oops. It's kind of like getting the flu after eating a certain food, it scares a person to try it again. Isn't that silly!!??

This is why I love when you share parts with us! Especially me!
Thanks so much!!

Brenda said...

Thank you Mary, we have just finished the old testament, with all of the massacres, hearts turning from God, even after he has just performed a miracle of food, water, shelter, the people still kept turning away and trying to make another idol. The new testament is a soothing relief and a resounding echo of His love for us his wayward children. Thanks for this message it fits right in for me in my life especially this week. BrendaR.

Anonymous said...

Hi Mary,
Thanks so much for sharing this with all of us. It is a great reminder of God's love and pursuit of me....

Thank you for alwaysleaving me such encouraging comments on my blog. I really appreciate you.


CountryDreaming said...

I just love seeing your creative motif featuring hearts and flowers and the theme of ABIDE! Truly inspirational and wonderful art.

Denise said...

Bless you.


Dear Mary,

May you receive more blessings and happiness for your devotion... thanks for sharing those words and for inspiring us infinitely!!!:)

Good day!!!:)

Keep safe!!!:)


Jane Farr said...

Great post Mary! Thanks for sharing. ((Hugs))