Outrageous Grace

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When people realize that they have received a gift they can never repay, they notify their faces and their actions, and the tenor of their lives becomes one of humble and joyful thanksgiving. They simply rejoice in the gift. “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, his love is everlasting” (Ps. 107:1).

–Brennan Manning,
Ruthless Trust

Published in: on 05/30/2017 at 16:59  Leave a Comment  
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The Critical Thing

Gratitud:Chesterton

Published in: on 05/28/2017 at 14:44  Leave a Comment  
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Pleasure Was God’s Idea

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Pleasure is designed to
raise our sense of God’s goodness,
deepen our gratitude to him,
and strengthen our hope of
richer pleasures to come.

–J. I. Packer

Celebrating God’s Goodness

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Receive every day as a resurrection from death, as a new enjoyment of life; meet every rising sun with such sentiments of God’s goodness, as if you had seen it, and all things, new-created upon your account: and under the sense of so great a blessing, let your joyful heart praise and magnify so good and glorious a Creator.

–William Law (1686-1761),
A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life

The potency of thankfulness

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THANKFULNESS takes the sting out of adversity. That is why we should give thanks in everything. There is an element of mystery in this transaction: We give thanks (regardless of our feelings), and God gives us Joy (regardless of circumstances). This is an act of obedience—at times, blind obedience. To people who don’t know God intimately, it can seem irrational and even impossible to thank Him for heartrending hardships. Nonetheless, those who obey Him in this way are invariably blessed, even though difficulties may remain.

Thankfulness opens your heart to God’s Presence and your thoughts to His thoughts. You may still be in the same place, with the same set of circumstances, but it is as if a light has been switched on, enabling us to see from His perspective. It it this Light of His Presence that removes the sting from adversity.

–Adapted from Jesus is Calling

Published in: on 11/27/2015 at 13:15  Leave a Comment  
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Grace and gratitude

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Grace evokes gratitude
like the voice an echo.
Gratitude follows grace
like thunder lightning.

–Karl Barth

Photo credit: chrlngeer

Published in: on 10/22/2015 at 10:38  Leave a Comment  
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Powerful and proven

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Giving thanks is dangerous,
it’s igniting and contagious
and otherworldly
and it’s been proven
biblically, scientifically,
to win demon wars.

–Ann Voskamp

Published in: on 02/05/2015 at 7:46  Leave a Comment  
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The need to worship

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I need to worship because without it I can forget that I have a Big God beside me and live in fear. I need to worship because without it I can forget his calling and begin to live in a spirit of self-preoccupation.

I need to worship because
without it I lose a sense of wonder
and gratitude and plod through life
with blinders on.

I need worship because my natural tendency is toward self-reliance and stubborn independence.

― John Ortberg

God’s handwriting

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Never lose an opportunity
of seeing anything that is beautiful,
for beauty is God’s handwriting–a wayside sacrament.
Welcome it in every fair face, in every fair sky,
in every flower, and thank God for it
as a cup of blessing.

–Ralph Waldo Emerson
(1803 – 1882)

Gifts from God

b90d9ba1a77ae29c06ff29319f31edd7Only those
who give thanks
are able to rejoice,
for only they
are conscious
that life, freedom
and well-being
are not rights
but gifts.

–Roger Scruton

 

 

Artwork: Lynne Henderson

Retaining the wonder

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Let us remember one thing: the worst thing that can happen to our Christianity is to let it become a thing taken for granted . . . The marvel of God’s gracious act upon our life never really dawns upon us unless we render thanks to him every day. Only the man who gives thanks retains the wonder of God’s fatherly love in his thoughts. But the one who has this wonder in his thoughts keeps the very spring and freshness of his Christianity. He holds on daily and nightly, to a living joy in his Lord and Saviour.

–Helmut Thielicke
The Waiting Father

A matter of altitude

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All through life,
sunshine is simply
a matter of altitude.

–F. W. Boreham

Published in: on 02/16/2014 at 17:19  Leave a Comment  
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The amazing fact

living-on-the-edge

The probability of us
being here is so small,
you’d think the mere fact
of existing would keep us all
in a contented dazzlement
of surprise.

–C. S. Lewis

Image: Ross Catrow

Published in: on 01/04/2014 at 8:17  Leave a Comment  
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Taking nothing for granted

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To be grateful is to recognize the Love of God in everything He has given us–and He has given us everything. Every breath we draw is a gift of His love, every moment of existence is a grace, for it brings with it immense graces from Him. Gratitude therefore takes nothing for granted, is never unresponsive, is constantly awakening to new wonder and to praise of the goodness of God. For the grateful man knows that God is good, not by hearsay but by experience. And that is what makes all the difference.

–Thomas Merton
Thoughts in Solitude

Image: Stephen Darbishire

 

Truth that liberates

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This [is] . . . the most liberating declaration ever uttered: “If you abide in My word,” said Jesus, “You are truly disciples of Mine; and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free” (John 8:31-32). Free from narrow-mindedness and parochial bias; free from denominational supposition; free from received opinions and traditional ignorance; free from shackles restraining redeemed intellectual curiosity and redeemed imagination; free from cant and shibboleth and prescribed terms of speech. Free to begin thinking like a Christian!

Free to enter wholly
into all those good things
that the loving heavenly Father
welcomes believers to enjoy.

Free to become conscious, thankful recipients of God’s bounteous grace, wherever one finds it and however it may be mediated to him: as courtesy from a stranger, hospitality from mere acquaintances, civility from a bureaucrat, sportsmanship from a golfing partner, compassion from an emergency-room nurse, diligence from an auto assembly-line worker, not to mention all the other elements of God’s common grace poured out through the blessings of friendship, the immeasurable wealth of love, as well as the restraining power of God that holds back evil’s worst assaults.

–D. Bruce Lockerbie

Image: hpizka

Essential ingredient

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When a person
doesn’t have gratitude,
something is missing in
his or her humanity.

–Elie Wiese

Published in: on 11/09/2013 at 4:09  Leave a Comment  
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Pride slays gratitude

Arrogance 4

A proud man is
seldom a grateful man,
for he never thinks he gets
as much as he deserves.

–Henry Ward Beecher
(1813 – 1887)

Published in: on 11/05/2013 at 1:26  Leave a Comment  
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Where it starts

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The beginning
of man’s rebellion
against God was,
and is, the lack of
a thankful heart.

–Francis Schaeffer
(1912 – 1984)

Blind to the blessing

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It is generally true that
all that is required to make people 
unmindful of what they owe God
for any blessing is that they
should receive that blessing
often and regularly.

–Richard Whately
(1787 – 1863)

Image: Frederick G. Cotman

On the lookout

Rain of flower

Be on the lookout for mercies.
The more we look for them,
the more of them will we see.
Blessings brighten
when we count them.
Out of the determination
of the heart the eyes see.

–Maltbie D. Babcock
(1858-1901)

Published in: on 10/30/2013 at 5:45  Leave a Comment  
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The best things

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The best things are nearest:
breath in your nostrils,
light in your eyes,
flowers at your feet,
duties at your hand,
the path of God
just before you.

–Robert Louis Stevenson

Not enough pens or paper

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We need deliberately
to call to mind
the joys of our journey.
Perhaps we should try
to write down the blessings of one day.
We might begin; we could never end;
there are not pens
or paper enough
in all the world.

George A. Buttrick

The root of joy

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The root of joy is gratefulness…
It is not joy that makes us grateful;
it is gratitude that makes us joyful.

–David Steindl-Rast

Published in: on 08/24/2013 at 4:50  Leave a Comment  
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Without thankfulness

Country Road Sunrise

Life without thankfulness
is devoid of love and passion.
Hope without thankfulness
is lacking in fine perception.
Faith without thankfulness
lacks strength and fortitude.
Every virtue divorced
from thankfulness
is maimed and limps along
the spiritual road.

–John Henry Jowett
(1864-1923)

Unlocking life

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Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life;
it can turn a meal into a feast,
a house into a home,
a stranger into a friend.

–Melody Beath

Published in: on 05/18/2013 at 3:45  Leave a Comment  
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The Creator’s design

“The highest heavens belong to the Lord,
but the earth he has given to mankind.”
(Psa. 115:16)

Why did You create all these things? They were all made for man and man was made for You. That was the order which You established. Woe to the one who reverses it, who would that all should be for him and turns in upon himself. He breaks the fundamental law of creation.

–François Fenelon
(1651 – 1715)

The miracle

The miracle is not . . .
to cast out demons, heal the sick
and turn multitudes to the faith.
The miracle is to be loved, forgiven,
and accepted by God.

The miracle

The miracle is not . . .
having wealth or fame.
The miracle is having toes
and a tongue and fingers
and knees and a nose.

The miracle

The miracle is not . . .
walking on water.
It is walking on a planet
where there are blackberries,
waterfalls, sunsets,
hummingbirds, rainbows,
butterflies and penguins. 

God’s art gallery

Thank God I have seen
an orange sky with purple clouds.
How easy it is to forget that
we have the privilege of living
in God’s art gallery.

–Erica Goros

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