"Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed."

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Chase the Lion -- chapters 5 & 6

Chapter 5 -- Guaranteed Uncertainty

The chapter began with a quote from Oswald Chamber. Really think about this:

"To be certain of God means that we are uncertain in all our ways; we do not know what a day may bring forth. This is generally said with a sigh of sadness; it should rather be an expression of breathless expectation."

The author suggests, "you have to do something counterintuitive if you want to reach your God-given potential and fulfill your God-given destiny. Sometimes you have to run away from security and chase uncertainty." (e.g. Abraham, Noah, Jonathan) (pg. 81)

"Lion chasers challenge the status quo. . . . [They] are often considered crazy, but they are able to do these things because they aren't afraid of uncertainty. They don't need to know what is coming next because they know that God knows. They don't need explanations for every disappointment because they know God has a plan. Lion chasers refuse to settle down because they want to experience every divine twist and turn that God has in store for them." (pg. 82)

"Stop spending all your energy making plans for God, and start seeking God." (pg. 100) -- think of Pentecost where the people prayed and waited on God

"So if life is infinitely uncertain and God is infinitely complex, then all we can do is accept our finitude and embrace uncertainty. . . . Faith doesn't reduce uncertainty. Faith embraces uncertainty. . . . Complications are often a byproduct of blessing." -- Marriage, children, wealth, success - all these complicate life. (pg. 85)

The author reflects, "The longer I live, the more I think that spiritual maturity is less about figuring out the future and more about moment-by-moment sensitivity to the Spirit of God. . . . I just don't think spiritual maturity results in higher degrees of predictability." (pg. 86)

Mark suggests we are control freaks who "want a complete itinerary with everything mapped out. . . .But faith involves a loss of control [and] the loss of certainty." (pg. 87)

"Following Christ reduces spiritual uncertainty, but it doesn't reduce circumstantial uncertainty." (pg. 100)

"Our confidence is contingent upon the character of God. . . . Some of your experiences won't make sense this side of eternity, but lion chasers know that God is connecting the dots in ways they can't comprehend. Lion chasers are humble enough to let God call the shots and brave enough to follow where He leads." (pg. 98-99)

Chapter 6 -- Playing It Safe Is Risky

"Good is often the enemy of great. . . . Faith is renouncing lesser goods for something greater. And it always involves a calculated risk. I'm convinced that the only thing between you and your destiny is one small act of courage." (pg. 106)

About stepping out in faith, the author says we most always second-guess ourselves. Did Jesus really tell me to do this? We "stop focusing on Jesus and start focusing on the wind and the waves." (pg. 112)

"Most of us want absolute certainty before we step out in faith. We love 100-percent money-back guarantees. But the problem with that is this: It takes faith out of the equation. There is no such thing as risk-free faith. And you can't experience success without risking failure." (pg. 114)

Lots of food for thought!

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