2 Comments

  1. Cindy
    November 1, 2010 @ 8:55 am

    This passage and David’s sermon really hit me yesterday as work has been becoming a little too “ultimate” in my life over the past couple months… I began to realize yesterday that it’s not so much success at work, but my reputation at work – how people think and talk about me that has become the ultimate. (Pretty prideful and self-centered) The drive for that has overtaken my life in some ways to the point I am too tired to do any of the things that are truly life-giving (exercise, prayer, quiet with God, etc.).

    Couple examples – back in August, my boss, 5 days before he retired from my company, pretty much humiliated me in front of my peers and his peers. As I’ve processed this event, I figured it was my “words of affirmation” love language that made this so devastating to me. I’m sure in part it was. However, my new boss is excellent at giving positive feedback, it’s been like water to my soul and motivates me to do more so I can receive more of his praise. I am thankful for the awareness I am starting to have so this area can be sanctified, but I have a long way to go before I can count the praise of man rubbish.

    Touching on David’s 98/2% comment above, it reminded me of a book I read last year (What’s So Amazing About Grace? maybe? can’t remember) that talked about how we perceive grace as making up for what we lack vs. being the 100% that we need. It was startling to see that I was completely in that camp of relying on my X% to get me to Christ when it was all Him to begin with.

    I’m with you David, so much resurrection and *restoration* I need as well. Thanks for helping us think through these things.

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  2. Elizabeth
    November 2, 2010 @ 3:01 pm

    I know, I know, I am always posting more stuff for our already-very-busy community to read or listen to, but… :-)… Dan Allender gave a fantastic sermon (on 10/10/10) that just jives so well with David’s post above.

    http://marshill.org/teaching/

    Allender looks at the same passage that we studied at the retreat with Gideon, actually—the one about the vineyard owner paying the same wage to those who had worked all day as well as those who’d only worked for an hour. Allender’s sermon focuses on how hard it is for many in the West to really accept this kind of gracious, abundant generosity, as David describes above. Allender speaks powerfully of an experience he had in Ethiopia where a friend showered him, a rich American, with a delicious and “enchanting” evening of prayer and food in his home, and how it ENRAGED him later to find out how much it had cost his friend. To this rage, another Ethiopian friend, who knew him well, said to him, “Stop! You are plotting how to repay him somehow, aren’t you? Well don’t you dare defame his gift!” Then he got up close to Allender’s face and said, “Suffer…the…kindness.”

    And isn’t that what we need to do with God’s grace? Suffer the kindness. I know I am not good at that at all. I want to give (and get credit for…and control…) the 98%, a David says, rather than truly accepting that it does (and must) all come from Him, as Cindy so rightly says.

    Lord, teach us at Restoration to suffer your kindness…

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