“What we see in a wedding ceremony is a shadow of God’s loving, merciful pursuit of us in Christ. It’s important to give God so much glory on the day.
At a wedding, we celebrate that a woman’s affections were won by this man. Similarly, we are celebrating that Christ wooed His people away from their idols, self-reliance, and into His loving care. When all eyes gaze upon the bride in her dazzling white gown, it is a reminder that every sinner who comes to the Saviour is made spotless before His presence. The couple makes vows to each other, upholding the call to a particular kind of love – Ahava love.”
“ I will give you this, my love, and I will not bargain or barter any longer. I will love you, as sure as He has loved me. I will discover what I can discover and though you remain a mystery, save God’s own knowledge, what I disclose of you I will keep in the warmest chamber of my heart, the very chamber where God has stowed Himself in me. And I will do this to my death, and to death it may bring me.
I will love you like God, because of God, mighted by the power of God. I will stop expecting your love, demanding your love, trading for your love, gaming for your love. I will simply love. I am giving myself to you, and tomorrow I will do it again. I suppose the clock itself will wear thin its time before I am ended at this altar of dying and dying again.
God risked Himself on me. I will risk myself on you. And together, we will learn to love, and perhaps then, and only then, understand this gravity that drew Him, unto us.”
– Donald Miller
“This is exactly where I want you. I am inviting you to live in the deep end.
You have spent many years of your life in the shallow end. You wade there, in your own strength. You focus on what you need, what is important to you. You say you believe in me, but you don’t live that way.
I want you to know me, I want you to need me. I want a deeper relationship with you. So, I am inviting you to the deep end. When you get here, you will try to keep your head above water in your own strength. But in time, you will tire. The waters will overcome you. You will feel like you are drowning.
That is exactly where I want you. You will call out to me, and you will see me, broken for you. There I will give you comfort, security, and buoyancy for the rough waters. The rough waters will not go away, the waters are still deep, but you can rest in me, for my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
The darkness will not go away, the deep waters will not narrow, but you will feel me in a close and intimate way. You will see me in ways you have never before. And you will have me.”
“In a love story larger than marriage…
the dragon lies within ourselves,
and our knight in shining armor is a carpenter from Bethlehem.”
Silence is beautiful, and beauty is silent.
I’ve seen glimpses of the beauty and glory of creation;
I’ve heard echoes from a distant land
Somehow, I know there is Someone who awaits me,
Someone to whom I truly belong
I wake from a coma,
And I find myself in this world
I begin to think this is home,
That I’ve arrived at my destination
But slowly, these glimpses and echoes,
A gentle tugging at my soul,
Tells me I’m not where I should be,
That I’m not with whom I should be
My finite heart is an indicator that something isn’t right
I cannot fully enjoy beauty and glory;
I hit a ceiling,
A brick wall that I just can’t seem to break through
This is not home
I long to go home
I am homesick
Soon and very soon.
“If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.” – Matthew 16:24-25
The way to deeper knowledge of God is through the lonely valleys of soul poverty and abnegation of all things. The blessed ones who possess the kingdom are they who have repudiated every external thing and have rooted from their hearts all sense of possessing. These are the “poor in spirit”. They have broken the yoke of the oppressor, and this they have done not by fighting but by surrendering.
Everything is safe which we commit to Him, and nothing is really safe which is not so committed.
The ancient curse will not go out painlessly; the tough old miser within us will not lie down and die in obedience to our command. He must be torn out of our heart like a plant from the soil; he must be extracted in agony and blood like a tooth from the jaw. He must be expelled from our soul by violence. And we shall need to steel ourselves against his piteous begging, and to recognize it as springing out of self-pity, one of the most reprehensible sins of the human heart.
If we would indeed know God in growing intimacy, we must go this way of renunciation. And if we are set upon the pursuit of God, He will sooner or later bring us to this test.
Father, I want to know Thee, but my cowardly heart fears to give up its toys. I cannot part with them without inward bleeding, and I do not try to hide from Thee the terror of the parting. I come trembling, but I do come. Please root from my heart all those things which I have cherished so long and which have become a very part of my living self, so that Thou mayest enter and dwell there without a rival. Then shalt Thou make the place of Thy feet glorious. Then shall my heart have no need of the sun to shine in it, for thyself wilt be the light of it, and there shall be no night there. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
– The Blessedness of Possessing Nothing