My name is Autumn Buzzell and I live and work in Ghana, West Africa with City of Refuge Ministries. Here, I run our school, Faith Roots International Academy, and get to be a part in rescuing and the healing of children who have been trafficked into the fishing trade, orphaned, abandoned, and those who just need a little extra loving. What an amazing gift this life is!

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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Love Does, Post 2

More from my new favorite book...again, quotes in no particular order or context...

"Because of our love for each other [between his wife and himself], I understand just a little more how God has pursued me in creative and whimsical ways, ways that initially did not get my attention.  Nevertheless, He wouldn't stop.  That's what love does--it pursues blindly, unflinchingly, and without end.  When you go after something you love, you'll do anything it takes to get it, even if it costs everything."

"Jesus seemed to say that all we would need to do is to scrape together the pieces of our lives that had fallen on the ground, bring those pieces to Him, and He would start using them.  Jesus didn't say He would ice over the grit of faults and failures either; He said He would use us in spite of the grit and faults and failures.  What we would have to do is decide to move from the parking lot to the party.  And He said we can't do that by just believing all the right stuff anymore; Jesus said He'd help us start doing the right stuff."

"Maybe God is doing some inexplicable things in your life.  Each of us gets to decide every time whether to lean in or step back--to say yes, ignore it, or tell God why He has the wrong person....We were all meant to save many lives.  God is always trying to save lives, and it seems like He usually uses the least likely people to do it.  So the next time God asks you to do something that is completely inexplicable, something you're sure is a prank because it requires a decision or courage that's way over your pay grade, something that might even save lives, say yes."

"I get the invitation every morning when I wake up to actually live a life of complete engagement, a life of whimsy, a life where love does.  It doesn't come in an envelope.  It's ushered in by a sunrise, the sound of a bird, or the smell of coffee drifting lazily from the kitchen.  It's the invitation to actually live, to fully participate in this amazing life for one more day.  Nobody turns down an invitation to the White House, but I've seen plenty of people turn down an invitation to fully live."

"The one who has invited you is way more powerful than any of the impediments we think we're facing, and He has just one message for us.  He leans forward and whispers quietly to each of us, 'There's more room.'"

"Words of encouragement are like that.  They have their own power.  And when they are said by the right people, they can change everything.  What I've found in following Jesus is that most of the time, when it comes to who says it, we each are the right people.  And I've concluded something else.  That the words people say to us not only have shelf life but have the ability to shape life."

"Religious people say that Jesus stands at the door and knocks.  I agree.  But there's more.  Jesus invites us to stand at the door of His house and do some knocking too.  And when He opens a door, He wants us to bring all of the faith we have to Him, even it it's a dime's worth.  And He promises that He will trade up with us--because He Himself is what we have the chance to trade for.  And what we'll have to give in exchange for knowing Him is everything we've accumulated during our lives and are standing on the porch holding on to."

"What I like about Jesus is that He didn't try to recruit people or use spin.  Neither He nor His disciples ever said they were going on a mission trip, because they weren't.  He just invited everyone and said they could follow Him."

"I trust God because He's the best author.  I think God doesn't spell out everything for us in life, but He does tell us how we can write our lives better; and trusting Him implicitly is always the right place to start."

"Jesus was always talking about a reverse economy.  He talked about how if you want to receive, you give.  If you want to lead, you follow.  That the poor are rich and you only really live for certain things if you are willing to die to them...we have more power than we think to make our own rules about life to live out the economy that Jesus put in place.  We each get to be the storekeeper, at least figuratively, and we decide who gets what and what things are worth.  We get to decide that people, including ourselves, are worth more than other might figure and that following Jesus means doing the math differently sometimes.  Because actually we're all on the same side of the counter when it comes to needing a little help and grace."

"I want to leak from having been hit by Jesus.  From having something crazy happen to me, something that flipped my life upside down.  I've met people like that, people who leak Jesus.  Whenever you're around them, Jesus keeps coming up with words and with actions.  I don't suppose everybody gets hit by Jesus, but those of us who have talk about Him differently.  We start steering funny; we start leaking where we stand.  And it's because we got thrown from our lives in a terrific collision."

"Jesus doesn't invite us on a business trip.  Instead, He says let's go after those things that inspire and challenge you and let's experience them together.  You don't need a lot of details or luggage or equipment, just a willingness to go into a storm with a Father who's kicking footholds into the steep sides of our problems while we kick a couple in ourselves too.  He guides us into those footholds with His strong hands while we're safely tethered to Him by a bright red rope of grace, which holds us securely.  Somehow in all of this, the terrain we navigate doesn't seem as scary either, because when we're on an adventure with God we're too excited to be afraid and too engaged to be thinking of anything else."

"[The disciples] didn't need all the details because they were on an adventure with a father who wanted to take them.  You don't need to know everything when you're with someone you trust.  That's probably why Jesus' disciples never said they were on a missions trip.  I think they knew love already had a name and they didn't need a program or anything else to define it.  We don't either.  The kind of adventure Jesus has invited us on doesn't require an application or prerequisites.  It's just about deciding to take up the offer made by a father who wants us to come."

More to come...


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