Tuesday, August 1, 2017

My Purpose-Driven Journal, Final Episode

Quotes from Rick Warren's Purpose-Driven Life, with my personal notes:

On becoming like Christ...

"From the very beginning, God's plan has been to make you like his son, Jesus. What does the full image and likeness of God look like? It looks like Jesus Christ! On earth, God's ultimate goal for your life is not comfort, but Christlike character."  -  Loving, accepting, forgiving, straight-forward, unflinching, dedicated to the cause, selfless  -  betrayed, despised, humiliated, railroaded, killed  -  restored, respected, revered, acclaimed, adored, exalted

"Spiritual growth is not automatic. It takes an intentional commitment. You must want to grow, decide to grow, make an effort to grow, and persist in growing. Discipleship - the process of becoming like Christ - always begins with a decision."  -  Spiritual growth doesn't "just happen"? Hmm...I see your point, but there is growth that happens (after the initial decision to follow Christ) just from living life. It's not as a result of study or discussion with a wiser disciple, but God brings it about through the circumstances of life. In fact, it is the Holy Spirit working on me and in me that constitutes spiritual growth.

"Thinking of others is the heart of Christ-likeness, and the goal of spiritual growth. This kind of thinking is unnatural, counter-cultural, and rare. The only way we will learn to think this way is by filling our minds with the Word of God."  -  Transformed - by the renewing of my mind (Romans 12:2)

"Everything that happens in the life of a child of God is Father-filtered, and he intends to use it for good."  -  Which is not the same thing as saying that everything that happens is God's will. Being able to use something is not the same as creating that something. I can make a wrong turn and still end up at my destination. But it was still a wrong turn.

"God develops the fruit of the Spirit in your life by allowing you to experience circumstances where you're tempted to express the exact opposite quality! Character development always involves a choice, and temptation provides that opportunity. Every time you defeat a temptation, you become more like Jesus!"  -  Love instead of hate. Joy instead of bitterness. Peace instead of worry/anxiety. Patience instead of selfish me-firstism. Kindness instead of sarcasm. Goodness instead of a mean spirit. Gentleness instead of gruff coarseness. Self-control instead of obeying impulses.

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Truth is...When the Holy Spirit controls our lives, he will produce this kind of fruit in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. (Galatians 5:22-23 NLT)

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