Allow me to present an appetizer platter of worthwhile nuggets from Brennan Manning's book, A Glimpse of Jesus: The Stranger to Self-hatred.
- [Quoting Bernard Bush] I hope it is clear that feelings of guilt, accompanied by anxiety, fear and restlessness, arise from deep within ourselves and are not an accurate gauge of the state of our souls before God. We cannot assume that he feels about us the way we feel about ourselves, unless we love ourselves intensely and freely.
- Salvation cannot be earned or merited but only humbly and gratefully received as a loving gift from the Father's hand.
- As in any lovers' quarrel, the making-up not only absolves the past but brings a new depth of trust and security to the relationship. There is more power in sharing our weaknesses than in sharing our strengths....The sinful and repentant prodigal son experienced an intimacy and joy with his Father in his brokenness that his sinless self-righteous brother would never know.
- I heard Jesus say, "For love of you I left my Father's side. I came to you who ran from me, who fled me, who did not want to hear my name. For love of you I was covered with spit, punched and beaten, and fixed to the wood of the cross."
- Because the mystery of iniquity lurks on the landscape and the power of sin waxes strong within us, we may come to the Lord bucking, screaming, and kicking. The self dies a slow death; the resistance to the Spirit remains real. The readiness to relinquish everything is more a painful process than a mystical zap. "We are accustomed to imagining the experience of conversion or sudden call to grace as an 'Oh, joy!' phenomenon," write Scott Peck. "In my experience,...at the moment we finally listen to the call we may say, 'O thank you, Lord', or we may say, 'O Lord, I am not worthy', or we may say, 'O $#*!, do I have to?'"
- Recognition of the problem is not the answer. Action is.
- The Word of God calls into being a faith-community characterized by unity without uniformity. Jesus is the way, but his light is refracted in myriad ways by multiple personalities.
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Truth is...one final quote sums up the whole book: "The first step in liberation from self-hatred is to move from the darkness of self-delusion into the daylight of God's truth."