craving clarity.

remember my 2010 manifesto? one of my "i will"s was to read & finish a book every month. not a you're-in-a-book-club-so-you-have-to but more of a this-book-is-exactly-what-you-need-this-month kinda thing. and...so far, so good. january it was madeleine l'engle's walking on water, february i read anne lamott's traveling mercies, and march i finished francis chan's crazy love. this month i've started brennan manning's ruthless trust. all of these are books that i bought used off of amazon on a whim, placed on my bookshelf, and waited to start when i felt an urge that it was time. and each one was exactly what i needed to read in that season...i love how the Holy Spirit guides us in that way.

and this month is no different. God is teaching me a ton on trust. so when i started reading this book, i just wanted to underline and highlight every sentence. i'm only one chapter in so far, and i want to keep screaming "yes!" and "amen!" on every point! here are some great points i wanted to share...

"craving clarity, we attempt to eliminate the risk of trusting God. fear of the unknown path stretching ahead of us destroys childlike trust in the Father's active goodness and unrestricted love." we (me) are so afraid of failure that we won't risk...if we really believed and trusted God's active goodness and unrestricted love, we would have no reason to fear or doubt.

"the way of trust is a movement into obscurity, into the undefined, into ambiguity, not into some predetermined, clearly delineated plan for the future." God doesn't promise to give us certainty or clarity (though that is what i constantly crave) -- but He does offer us His presence and His promise.

manning says that a life of faith requires "a willingness to risk a journey into the unknown and a readiness to trust God even in the darkness." at the end of the chapter, he quotes henry nouwen, with a sentence that i want to repeat to myself every morning:

i think at the core of all of our fears & doubts is the feeling that we are alone and that we are out of control. but -- if we can believe that we are not alone -- that God is with us always (His PRESENCE)... and that He is in control -- and will always give us what we need (His PROMISE) then we can choose to trust.

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