Things that stood out to me:
Feeding our souls with what? What does ‘feeding your soul’ look like?
Intentionally seeking to sharpen my ability to see beauty in a broken world.
…Wanting to push-back, with as much grace as possible, in daily life.
*Persevering in pushing back against the habit of instant answers.
THOUGHTFULNESS – – – > PUSHING BACK AGAINST ILL-FOUNDED IDEALISM THAT CRINKLES INTO CYNICISM BY HOLDING TO TRUE IDEALS THAT ALLOW FOR AND INFORM HOW WE FACE THE WORLD AS IT REALLY IS.
What are the easy things to SEEK SHARPENING our ABILITIES for???
WE ALWAYS MAKE TIME FOR THE THINGS WE CONSIDER ESSENTIAL.
Although we’d never put it this boldly, we actually believe that a Christian can consistently refuse to give beauty the time it requires, can hold undeveloped views of creativity and culture, can insist that “what I like” is a sufficient standard for art – and here’s the kicker – we actually believe that such a philistine can still be regarded as a mature and maturing follower of Christ.
God is never not infinitely wise. God’s truth is never false or shallow …but always LIVED. We shall not encounter God’s revelation as strictly rational because it goes far beyond all reasoning into a mystery of divine glory that is rational but beyond human knowing. Beauty is the resplendent glory of God Most High. …Beauty is a signal of transcendence, a sign that something beyond the here and now exists and can be embraced. It is one reason why the Scriptures insist that unless we learn to BE STILL, we cannot know God. Beauty is unhurried, delicate, and allusive, so quiet contemplation is necessary to plumb its depths. …the pain of searing loss is that we so often stare directly past beauty; we look at glory but see nothing.
Happiness has little to do with fun & amusement and a lot to do with hard work, perseverance, and a virtuous life.
How much less interesting the Gospels would be if Jesus had given straightforward answers to people.
The longer one lives and the more one confronts life’s frustrations and problems, the harder idealism is. …there is an ever-looming temptation to slip into autopilot, to stop caring because caring is harder than not caring.
At the 2016 Rochester L’Abri Conference Andrew Fellows identified what he called Five Key Questions of the Heart – – – > 5 QUESTIONS OF THE HEART …A PROJECT OF SIGNIFICANCE THAT EACH & EVERY PERSON ON THE PLANET IS EMBARKED ON OVER THE COURSE OF THEIR ENTIRE LIFE.
- Why? the personal meaning project [the deep unrelenting desire for a measure of personal significance.
- What for? the purpose project [trying to make sense of our life and work …does what I do matter or make a difference?] …this is why expressions of gratitude can mean so much, while having all we do be ignored or dismissed can feel like being smothered in the dust of death.
- Who am I? the hero project [the hope that, in the final analysis, I stand out somehow in the endless crowd].
- How should we then live? the good life project [the quest to find some measure of fulfillment and satisfaction for a life well lived].
- How can I be saved? the salvation project [it is seen in the quest for youthfulness, fitness, and longevity that so many obsess over, and in the myriad forms of distraction and addiction that numb so many].
Denis Haack thinks Andrew Fellow’s list is a good one, and that it provides clarity in understanding the human condition, and clarity in understanding our own hearts. Denis Haack was so energized by this rigorous and thoughtful list of questions that he came up with 4 more questions of the heart:
- Am I loved? the relationship project [to feel unloved and unlovable is to sever the chords of friendship and community and to threaten an unrelieved loneliness. …the need to be loved and to love is a yearning we cannot escape, and it can be argued that this quest is at the root of all the deepest human desires and needs].
- Where is home? the place to rest project [we all long for a safe climate where we are free from the tyranny of incessant performance].
- Can justice be achieved? the justice project [Habakkuk was very interested in the answer to this question; and the yearning for justice seems to be instinctive and innate in people, showing up even in small children who feel slighted by playmates and parents].
- What is that? the creature project [this is where we can’t help but wonder – as instinctively curious creatures – what our fellow creatures are, and how they work, and how they fit into things …e.g. humming birds, pistol shrimp, bumble bees, leviathan, etc.]. In this category there is also an explicit opportunity to notice how arrogant we are, observing that whereas a sparrow is content to be the sparrow he was created to be, we have refused to accept God’s Word concerning how we are to be and to live. God talks about this kind of thing in Jeremiah 8:7 – – – > Even the stork in the heavens knows her times, and the turtledove, swallow, and crane keep the time of their coming, but my people know not the rules of the LORD. Many professing Christians testify to having ‘met God’ in such a way that curious questions about God cease to be questions for them, and the impression is given that, if the answers are not fully settled for you, you aren’t as spiritual as they are.
For the full article by Denis Haack click HERE.