an alternate way to link to flickr. only one photo at a time, but here is what it looks like.
In other words, it is easy to read, challenges assumptions, and dares us to move out of our routines into a powerful relationship with God the Holy Spirit.
Here are a few excerpts from later in the book to give the flavor:
God is not interested in numbers. He cares most about the faithfulness, not the size, of His bride. He cares about whether people are lovers of Him. And while I might be able to get people in the doors of a church or auditorium if I tell enough jokes or use enough visuals, the fact remains that I cannot convince people to be obsessed with Jesus. Perhaps I can talk people into praying a prayer, but I cannot talk anyone into falling in love with Christ. I cannot make someone understand and accept the gift of grace. Only the Holy Spirit can do that. So by every measure that actually counts, I need the Holy Spirit. Desperately.
But God is not a coercive God. And though He desires for His children to know peace and love and to have wisdom, I have noticed that He often waits for us to ask.
He desires to do more than “help out” a bit. He wants to completely transform us. He wants to take a timid heart and set it ablaze with strength and courage, so much so that people know something supernatural has taken place–life change just as miraculous as fire coming down from heaven.
I don’t know about you, but I cannot simply muster up more love. I can’t manufacture patience just by gritting my teeth and determining to be more patient. We are not strong enough or good enough and it doesn’t work that way. None of us can “do goodness” on our own, much less all the other elements that make up the fruit of the Spirit.
Instead of mustering up more willpower, let’s focus our energies and time on asking for help from the One who has the power to change us. Let’s take the time to ask God to put the fruit of His Spirit into our lives. And let’s spend time with the One we want to be more like.
These are questions we tend to ask when things aren’t going the way we would desire for them to go. Why me? Why this? Why now?
here is a paragraph from the middle, but you really have to go read and perhaps meditate on the whole thing
As that deeper question sinks home, you become joyously sane. The universe is no longer supremely about you. Yet you are not irrelevant. God’s story makes you just the right size. Everything counts, but the scale changes to something that makes much more sense. You face hard things. But you have already received something better which can never be taken away. And that better something will continue to work out the whole journey long.
I have the Kindle version of Suffering and the Sovereignty of God on my iPhone. Obviously, I need to read past the introduction.
My lovely wife read Same Kind of Different As Me last year and also recommends it highly.
here are some lines that Piper mentioned:
- “Denver and I are not preachers or teachers but sinners with a story to tell.”
- “You never know whose eyes God is watchin’ you through.”
- “I hope people will recycle the love they’ve been givin’ to somebody that’s not easy to love.”
- “This earth ain’t no final restin’ place, so in a way we is all homeless.”
- “Just tell ’em I’m a nobody tryin’ to tell everybody about Somebody who can save anybody.”
- “How do you live the rest of your life in jus a few days?”
Julie and I early voted this afternoon for my boss, Governor Rick Perry. Below is the text of an email that I received from someone else who works for the Governor, explaining why it is important to vote for him in this primary as well as for Justice Eva Guzman.
Early voting is underway. You can vote early through next Friday. The Primary is Tuesday, March 2nd. I encourage you to vote early. Having been involved in the political process for close to 30 years now, I can think of no time in the history of our country and our state that it is more important for you to choose the right leaders. I know that you are all encountering your own issues with this current economy, and there is a lot of uncertainty, and in many cases fear, of what the future holds. I know that you will find it no surprise that I am encouraging you to vote for our current Governor, Rick Perry. I’m not going to give you the political reasons – you can see those on the tv ads that are currently running. I am asking you to support him because he has done a great job leading this state during very difficult times. Things are tough on many Texans right now, but it could be a lot worse if steps had not been taken prior to this current downturn to have Texas in a strong position to weather the storm. Those decisions did not happen by accident. I have had the privilege to see our Governor at work behind the scenes. I know how much he loves this state and the people of this state. He is seasoned and has made the tough decisions that have needed to be made, many times knowing that he would take the political hit. He does not govern by opinion polls or from the influence of special interests. He isn’t looking for the endorsement of newspapers. He represents the businesses and people who work hard every day – The folks like you and me who don’t ask anything from government other than to let us keep as much of our hard earned salaries and business profits as possible to support ourselves, our familes, and help in our communities.
He is not very popular with the current administration in Washington DC. He is taking strong stands every day to protect Texas and her people from what some in the federal government would do to our state, if not challenged. The threats are real and too numerous to discuss in one short email. This is not the time to elect someone who would need time for on-the-job training. The people in office who would pass laws to hurt our state would not give someone a grace period. I would be happy to answer questions or direct you to sources who can answer your questions.
I would also like to encourage you to vote for Justice Eva Guzman for the Texas Supreme Court. The Governor just recently appointed her to the seat she holds on the Court. Justice Guzman is known throughout legal circles as a strict constructionist with an unmatched work ethic. She is a principled, conservative judge. As an associate justice on the 14th Court of Appeals in Houston, she ruled on thousands of civil and criminal appeals, and authored hundreds of published opinions. She was recently recognized by the Hispanic National Bar Association as Latina Judge of the Year and as 2009 Judge of the Year by the Mexican American Bar Association of Texas Foundation. She has also been named Appellate Judge of the Year by P.O.L.I.C.E. Inc. and the Houston Police Officers Union. She has an incredible personal history that I would be happy to share with you. For all of my female friends, you would love to hear about her story and journey to end up making history as the first Hispanic female to serve on the Supreme Court of Texas.
Thanks to each of you for your indulgence as I have shared my opinions with you.
I have met Justice Guzman on several occasions and I have spoken with her at length and in depth about her judicial philosophy as a principled conservative Judge. She is a proven hard worker on the 14th Court of Appeals and I encourage everyone to vote for her in the primary and general election in her race for place 9 on the Texas Supreme Court.