Wednesday, January 16, 2008

God has a solution

”As soon as we discover we have a problem, God has already been working on it and the solution is on the way…If we believe in the God of Romans 8:28, we will always remember that by the time we know a problem exists, God has already been working on it and his solution is on the way.”

John Piper – Taste and See (pg. 19)

"The strength of patience hangs on our capacity to believe that God is up to something good for us in all our delays and detours."

John Piper - Battling Unbelief

“Once a man sets his heart on such a relationship (a healthy, tender, passionate, enduring, mutually satisfying relationship with one woman), the same male energy that once was casting about looking for mere copulation becomes a drive to woo and win, to care for and endure, and to provide and protect a woman and the children they have together.”

John Ensor – Doing Things Right in Matters of the Heart

“There has to be laid in a relationship like marriage a foundation on which both of you are standing when you begin to get in each others face with desires for change. Because if a foundation of absolute, rock solid, gracious commitment to forgive and forebear isn’t there first the efforts to bring about change will start to sound like ultimatums, not service. There has to be a gospel foundation that says “I’m committed to you no matter what. So that when I ask this to change, I’m not saying ‘change or I’m out of here.’”…That’s what the vows are about.

John Piper - Marriage: Pursuing Conformity to Christ in the Covenant (2/25/07)

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Fear of a Holy God

I love this quote from R.C. Sproul's The Holiness of God. He's referencing Mark 4:35-41.

“Freud said we invent a God who has power over the earthquake, flood and disease. God is personal. We can talk to Him. We can try to bargain with Him. We can plead with Him to save us from the destructive forces of nature. We are not able to plead with earthquakes, negotiate with floods or bargain with cancer. So, the theory goes, we invent God to help us deal with these scary things.

“What is significant about this scriptural story is that the disciples’ fear increased after the threat of the storm was removed (Mark 4: 39-40). The storm had made them afraid. Jesus’ action to still the tempest made them more afraid. In the power of Christ they met something more frightening than they had ever met in nature. They were in the presence of the holy. We wonder what Freud would have said about that. Why would the disciples invent a God whose holiness was more terrifying than the forces of nature that provoked them to invent a god in the first place? We can understand it if people invented an unholy god, a god who brought only comfort. But why a god more scary than the earthquake, flood or disease? It is one thing to fall victim to the flood or to fall prey to cancer; it is another thing to fall into the hands of the living God.”

R.C. Sproul – The Holiness of God

Restless hearts

"Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee.”

Augustine – Confessions 1:1