Sunday, March 6, 2011

One Thousand Gifts - Chapter 9

The vlog for Chapter 9 of Ann Voskamp's One Thousand Gifts is now online.  This chapter is entitled Go Lower... a reminder to me that in humility, there is joy!

Here are some of my favourites from this chapter...
How to live in a state of awe when life is mundane and ordinary?

Instead of filling with expectations, the joy-filled expect nothing - and are filled.

The humble live surprised.  The humble live by joy.

Humility is that good humus that grows gratitude that yields abundant joy.

"He must increase, but I must decrease" (John 3:30 NASB).

He must increase and I must decrease - not because that is burden but so that my joy might increase with more of Him!

Lament is a cry of belief in a good God, a God who has His ear to our hearts, a God who transfigures the ugly into beauty.

... the more I learn eucharisteo, the more I learn His love, the less likely I am to Israelite complain and the more I genuinely lament, complaint that trusts His heart.

While I may not always feel joy, God asks me to give thanks in all things, because He knows that the feeling of joy begins in the action of thanksgiving.

Joy is God and God is joy and joy doesn't negate all other emotions - joy transcends all other emotions.

Joy is a flame that glimmers only in the palm of the open and humble hand.  In an open and humble palm, released and surrendered to receive, light dances, flickers happy.  The moment the hand is clenched tight, fingers all pointing toward self and rights and demands, joy is snuffed out.

Are there times that a sense of entitlement - expectations - is what inflates self, detonates anger, offends God, extinguishes joy?

And what do I really deserve?  Thankfully, God never gives what is deserved, but instead, God graciously, passionately offers gifts, our bodies, our time, our very lives.

Leave the hand open and be. Be at peace.  Bend the knee and be small and let God give what God chooses to give because He only gives love and whisper surprised thanks.  This is the fuel for joy's flame.  Fullness of joy is discovered only in the emptying of will.

Joy - it's always obedience.
Another chapter that has successfully spoken to the depths of my soul.  I am truly thankful for the gift that this book has been to me!

Unwrapping more of His love in this world.
Act justly.  Love mercy.  Walk humbly with God!

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