Cheap Grace

I started reading (listening) to The Cost of Discipleship by Dietrich Bonhoeffer tonight as I ran the vacuum across the floor. I’ve started this a few times but never made it past around 15 minutes. It may not be the best book to listen to while I run (I’ll admit, it’s a little dry), but letting it soak in as I walked back and forth, back and forth, and back and forth across the living room was good tonight.

What caught my ear tonight was this line, about the “costly” gift of grace: “What has cost God much cannot be cheap for us.”

What has cost God much cannot be cheap for us.

How true is that? It’s so easy to trivialize, to minimize, and to economize grace. Like it’s something we’ll find around every corner, from any source that offers “life,” and whenever we feel we need it. While all of that is really true when we truly accept it from our Father, it’s not as cheap as we make it out to be.

This was a great reminder for me. A great reminder of how much I’m loved. What hast cost God much cannot be cheap… for me.

Bundesarchiv, Bild 146-1987-074-16 / CC-BY-SA [CC BY-SA 3.0 de (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/de/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons
Bundesarchiv, Bild 146-1987-074-16 / CC-BY-SA [CC BY-SA 3.0 de (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/de/deed.en)], via Wikimedia Commons
I’m looking forward to the rest of this book. Here’s the quote from above in a little more of it’s context:

“Costly grace is the gospel which must be sought again and again and again, the gift which must be asked for, the door at which a man must knock. Such grace is costly because it calls us to follow, and it is grace because it calls us to follow Jesus Christ. It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life. It is costly because it condemns sin, and grace because it justifies the sinner. Above all, it is costly because it cost God the life of his Son: ‘Ye were bought at a price’, and what has cost God much cannot be cheap for us. Above all, it is grace because God did not reckon his Son too dear a price to pay for our life, but delivered him up for us. Costly grace is the Incarnation of God.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, The Cost of Discipleship

Image Credit: Bundesarchiv, Bild 146-1987-074-16 / CC-BY-SA [CC BY-SA 3.0 de], via Wikimedia Commons

Plan good

This is a voice of truth I’m thankful for right now.

Do what’s right. Let the results follow.

Don’t those who plan evil go astray? Those who plan good receive loyalty and faithfulness.
There is profit in hard work, but mere talk leads to poverty.
Wealth is the crown of the wise, and the folly of fools is folly.

Proverbs 14:22-24

There is power in the blood.

Heard this at church today. Don’t know where it came from but it’s good. Blood is life.

Sixty thousand miles of blood vessels link every living cell; even the blood vessels themselves are fed by blood vessels. Highways narrow down to one-lane roads, then bike paths, then footpaths, until finally the red cell must bow sideways and edge through a capillary one-tenth in diameter of a human hair. In such narrow confines the cells are stripped of food and oxygen and loaded down with carbon dioxide and urea. If shrunken down to their size, we would see red cells as bloated bags of jelly and iron drifting along in a river until they reach the smallest capillary, where gases fizz and wheeze in and out of surface membranes. From there red cells rush to the kidneys for a thorough scrubbing, then back to the lungs for a refill. And the journey begins anew.

Tolerance for Failure

Tolerance for failure is a very specific part of of excellent company’s culture and that lesson comes directly from the top.

Champions have to make lots of tries and consequently experience failures or the company will never learn.

– The E-Myth Revisited – Michael Gerber

Tony Evans Week 3 Kingdom Man

God chooses to do most of what he does because of decisions we make.

There is no man that has net his destiny without wandering through the wilderness.

When you’re a kingdom man, there is an inheritance to be claimed because there is a destiny to be fulfilled.

You can’t go to tomorrow until yesterday dies.

Could it be that I’m not seeing god move me into my destiny because I refuse to move my feet?

What is god asking me to do that doesn’t make sense? What have I written off to kit being gods voice because it doesn’t make sense or sounds out of character for god?

When god asks you to move and it didn’t make sense he does it for one reason: he wants to feel my faith.

“God does not know how something feels until e experiences it.” NOW I know that you fear me because you we’re willing…

Joshua 1

“7 “Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. 8 Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.”

Don’t let the size of the problem stop you from accepting and stepping into gods promise. As a kingdom man, never allow people to have the final say in your life. We make people the king.

1 Sam 17. In life we will run into big people. Big things. Don’t look at thee size. Look at their covering (covenant).

Kingdom men first ask “what does god say about this matter?” If you stay tethered to gods word you will have GREAT success.

What do you do about the messes you’ve found yourself in?

Tread where the word of god gives you permission to tread.

Kingdom Man by Tony Evans Week 2

God gave Adam a house. He told him to both garden it and guard it… Even before he knew he had an enemy.

God created a lesser creature… Man… So that he could show what god can do with less that is committed to him than what he can do with a greater being in rebellion to him.

If you are a Christian, you have been chosen bit only to be saved in heaven but to be great in history.

Referees aren’t just ordinary men. They may be smaller, slower, and older, but they have authority. The players may have power but the refs have authority.

God doesn’t want me to become great the same way the world makes people great. God didn’t say we should despise greatness but rather we should follow his path to it.

Everything god calls men to is more than they think they can achieve.

“HOW SMALL ARE YOU THINKING?”

Moses was the meekest man that ever lived yet God made him like a god to pharaoh.

He process of breaking a horse is to ride it until it gets the point. When a horse gets broken, it doesn’t lose it’s power or strength… It’s just had its will adjusted.

God won’t allow something in his stable to be independent of him. He will make us week so that he can make us great.

The biggest Christian man is the one who has gone low before god. Like an offensive lineman.

Greatness is when you achieve the reason for living…

Story of Shamgar in Judges. A farmer listens to god and becomes great. Killed 600 men w a stick.

The devil is ok w us calling god god but he wants to remove the “lord.”

A great part of being a man is naming. We name what god gives us. We bring reality to things as to what they are to be.

Take the red pill. “Welcome to the real world.”

Kingdom Man by Tony Evans Week 1

The guys at our church are doing a little study with Tony Evans. I’m lot one for filling in a workbook that will just go on a shelf so my notes go here.

The cry for kingdom men is coming from the culture, from men themselves, and from Almighty God.

“Stand in the gap.”

A kingdom man not only believes in god but also has learns to love his life under the lordship of Jesus Christ.

you are not a kingdom man unless god is telling you what to do.

Isa 34:23-24 men meet w god 3x a year. Get their marching orders. Things will be better when you get home because you’ve met w god. We ate sent home as representatives of god.

Chaos comes when god is not allowed to be god in the life of a man.

A woman is a mirror to let a man know what his submission to god looks like.

The goal of a kingdom man is to implement the rule of god, not make rules of his own. When god can get men to leave their normal activities things will happen that they’ve never imagined.

We need to remind ourselves, this is not our house. We were placed here to manage it, but it is now our own.

God calls is to be men of the kingdom, submitting out rule to his rule. This is where freedom lies.

Kingdom men represent in time God’s ___ from eternity.

When Inspiration Strikes

Last night was one of those rare nights where inspiration struck and wouldn’t let me go. I’ve written before about how computer code is a bit of an art form for me, and last night, a canvas was dropped before me and a brush was stuck in my hand.

Sometimes it’s just a puzzle piece that falls into place that starts it all. That’s what happened last night. A key piece to the messaging system I’m re-working over at ProtegaText finally got looked into, and it was so simple (not easy – simple) to implement that it got me literally saying “wow, wow, wow” as I sat here in my recliner coding late into the evening. I couldn’t put it down, but eventually I did, and it was still a reasonable hour for bedtime.

Thing is, though, the brain was in gear, and the heart was following it right along. I laid in bed – no longer imagining how this might work – but seeing it, line by line, form by form, and piece by piece – all come together. Eventually I had to get up… not to code, but to find my notebook, pen, and a book light. I haven’t looked at the scribbles I created yet this morning, but I know they are awesome. Workflows that I’ve been struggling to see. Electronic conversations I couldn’t figure out. It’s all there.

Nights like this are rare, and that’s probably a good thing, given that I’m a father of two children who need tending early in the morning. I’m not at a stage of life where I can pull all nighters writing code, but when the moment strikes, sometimes you just can’t ignore it.

One thing I loved about last night is that my wife wanted to hear about it. Maybe that was just because I was keeping her up with my book light and scribbling – instead of wadding up ideas that don’t work I just scribble them out. But she kept asking, and instead of giving her the old “you don’t want to hear,” I went ahead and told her… who knows what she understood -she’s no techie – but she wanted to hear, nonetheless.

And then came that moment every man longs for… “I’m proud of you.” TWICE she said that last night. TWICE. Rocks my world.

So yeah… inspiration struck last night. And here I am, throwing the rock on the pile.

And for the record… a few other things happened yesterday:

  • Picked up a signed agreement for our first government project, which also happens to be one of the largest single projects we’ve ever done. This thing has the signature of an elected official on it! That may seem petty… but there’s over a year and a half worth of nurturing a relationship in this, and I love it.
  • Had my first meeting with a possible distributor for TruckStock, and wow, that meeting went great. I was originally meeting with just the regional store manager (or so I thought), but when I walked in I also found myself face to face with the sales manager, the e-commerce guy, and the COO, who had travelled up from Cincinnati. Following the meeting, the regional manager took me aside and talked about how the COO rarely shows his cards this early in the game, and that he thought this might be a win-win-win opportunity with real promise. I felt the same.
  • Picked up a new client… an old time friend… through a new networking group I’m part of.
  • Dropped by a ProtegaText friend and left him with some materials to pass out to his friends.
  • Watched my son play soccer.
  • Ran off some steam with my dog.
  • Heard back on an opportunity that really has me curious… that’s all I can say there for now.
  • A few other things, which I won’t mention here… it was just a great day. And the thing is, that wasn’t all just “out of the blue.” These moments have been coming – some steady, some fast and furious, and some even slow, hard, tricky, and with a good dose of frustration.

I love how Faithful and True my Father is. I love how when I hear those “I’m Proud Of You” comments sometime they seem to come straight from him.

Thank you so much, Father. SDG.