Monday, March 23, 2015

My Outtakes from Daring Greatly

My book club is reading Brene Brown's "Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead". Brown's TED talks are some of the most watched on the TED site and her books have been NY Times Bestsellers. Having finished the book, I wanted to share a few of my favorite quotes.  If one of the challenges of post-modern Christians is to learn to be authentic and courageous, then some of her insights can challenge us toward that goal.

"What we know matters, but who we are matters more."

"I know the yearning to believe that what I'm doing matters and how easy it is to confuse that with the drive to be extraordinary."

"Trust is a product of vulnerability that grows over time and requires work, attention, and full engagement."

"....I also learned that the people who love me, the people I really depend on, were never the critics who were pointing at me while I stumbled.  They weren't in the bleachers at all.  They were with me in the arena.  Fighting for me and with me."

"There is no intimacy without vulnerability.  Yet another powerful example of vulnerability as courage."

And many more.  I have plenty to say about the book, but the one thought I record here is that engaged motherhood is all about daring greatly because being a mother is all about uncertainty and risk and vulnerability.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Tennyson Today

A few lines from our poetry reading today that I loved.  These are from Tennyson's  "Morte D'Arthur":

"The old order changeth, yielding place to new.
And God fulfils Himself in many ways,
Lest one good custom should corrupt the world."

Pray for my soul.  More things are wrought by prayer
Than this world dreams of.  Wherefore, let thy voice
Rise like a fountain for me night and day.
For what are men better than sheep or goats
That nourish a blind life within the brain,
If, knowing God, they lift not hands of prayer
Both for themselves and those who call them friend?
For so the whole round earth is every way
Bound by gold chains about the feet of God."

These thoughts are beautiful reminders that God works in mysterious ways, and prayer is essential for who know what all it is accomplishing.  Urges me on to ceaseless prayers.

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

A New Perspective

For years the part of Romans 12:2 that has been burned into my memory is, "Be Ye Transformed...."  It has always seemed like a commandment in that translation and that meant to me, it was something I was supposed to do.  Wow.  That made it a pretty tough commandment to follow.  Could I really work all these years on being transformed?

Then about a month ago, I bought a tiny copy of the New Living Translation Bible.  Every now and then I try a new translation to help give a fresh perspective on the Scriptures.  I am enjoying it, but the verse in Romans 12 was a shock and a relief.  In the NLT that verse says:  "Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but LET GOD TRANSFORM YOU into a new person by changing the way you think.  Then you will learn to know God's will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect."  

Wow.  Did you get that difference?  It was like a cold snap of winter air hitting my face when I open the door.  "Let God transform you".  That is wonderful.  It isn't up to me anymore.  It is God doing the transforming, the metamorphosis, the work.  I am to surrender, to not kick against the work.  What a relief of a "works mentality" for me.  I hope it is for you too.