Second Chances

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A series of quotes or quips inspired by the writing of John & Stasi Eldredge (RansomedHeart).

Ugly Duckling Becomes A Swan

The Phoenix rises from the ashes. Cinderella rises from the cinders to become a queen. The Ugly Duckling becomes a beautiful swan. Pinocchio becomes a real boy. The frog becomes a prince. The Cowardly Lion gets his courage, the Scarecrow his brains, and the Tin Woodman a new heart. They are all transformed into the very thing they never thought they could be.

Why are we enchanted by tales of transformation? I can’t think of a movie or novel or fairy tale that doesn’t somehow turn on this. Why is it an essential part of any great story? Because it is the secret to Christianity, and Christianity is the secret to the universe. “You must be born again” (John 3:7). You must be transformed. Keeping the Law, following the rules, polishing up your manners—none of that will do. “What counts is whether we really have been changed into new and different people” (Gal. 6:15).

Is this not the message of the Gospel? Zacchaeus the trickster becomes Zacchaeus the Honest One. Mary the whore becomes Mary the Last of the Truly Faithful. Paul the self-righteous murderer becomes Paul the Humble Apostle. Erhaps we have changed a bit in what we believe and how we act. We confess the creeds now, and we’ve gotten our temper under control . . . for the most part. But “transformed” seems a bit too much to claim. How about “forgiven and on our way”? That’s how most Christians would describe what’s happened to them. It’s partly true . . . and partly untrue, and the part that’s untrue is what’s killing us. We’ve been told that even though we have placed our hope in Christ, even though we have become his followers, our hearts are still desperately wicked. And of course, so long as we believe that our hearts remain untouched, unchanged, we will pretty much live untouched and unchanged.

For our heart is the wellspring of life within us.

Wild Byte 8/3 (Beauty & the Beast)

ImageA series of quotes or quips inspired by the writing of John & Stasi Eldredge (RansomedHeart).

Beauty & the Beast

Now Beauty feared that she had caused his death. She ran throughout the palace, sobbing loudly. After searching everywhere, she recalled her dream and ran into the garden toward the canal, where she had seen him in her sleep. There she found the poor Beast stretched out unconscious. She thought he was dead. Without concern for his horrifying looks, she threw herself on his body and felt his heart beating. So she fetched some water from the canal and threw it on his face.

Beast opened his eyes and said, “You forgot your promise, Beauty. The grief I felt upon having lost you made me decide to fast to death. But I shall die content since I have the pleasure of seeing you one more time.”

“No, my dear Beast, you shall not die,” said Beauty. “You will live to become my husband. I give you my hand, and I swear that I belong only to you from this moment on. Alas! I thought that I only felt friendship for you, but the torment I am feeling makes me realize that I cannot live without you.”

Beauty had scarcely uttered these words when the castle radiated with light. Fireworks and music announced a feast. These attractions did not hold her attention, though. She returned her gaze to her dear Beast, whose dangerous condition made her tremble. How great was her surprise when she discovered that the Beast had disappeared, and at her feet was a prince more handsome than Eros himself, who thanked her for putting an end to his enchantment.

It is the deepest and most wonderful of all mythic truths, unveiled here in the originalBeauty and the Beast, written by Jeanne-Marie Leprince de Beaumont. The Transformation. A creature that no one could bear to look upon is transformed into a handsome prince. That which was dark and ugly is now glorious and good. Is it not the most beautiful outcome of any story to be written? Perhaps that is because it is the deepest yearning of the human heart.

Wild Byte 25/2 (Life is Dangerous)

into-the-wild-horses-731087A series of quotes or quips inspired by the writing of John & Stasi Eldredge (Ransomed Heart).

“Jesus assumes a dangerous world. Not an unpredictable one, but clearly a world in which we find ourselves in a great battle with evil. Oh yes, he assumes God is our ally, but not primarily to help us find a simple life. That’s not what is going on here..” 

~ J.E’s blog of today, 2013.

John is right, some of the Church comprehension of reality is false and infused with the fashion and culture of this world – that life is about comfort and achieving ease.  The reality is, that life is full of trouble and difficulty (“Jesus was a man acquainted with sorrows“). This is often more true for Christians because we have crossed a line, crossing swords with an implacable enemy.

So guys, if you acknowledge you are a warrior, accept that there is a war and that you are in it. Fight! Arm yourself with the realisation, that the battle is won, but we’re still engaged in the outcome.

Read John Eldredge’s full blog post here, “How Are You Interpreting Reality?” 

Wild Byte 22/2

ImageA series of quotes or quips inspired by the writing of John & Stasi Eldredge (Ransomed Heart).

“Women do this in marriage [resignation]. They see that they are not going to have any real intimacy with their husbands, so they lose themselves in soaps or tabloids or romance novels.”

~ J.E. Walking With God, 2008.

Ok guys, so talk to your lover and ask her plainly, do you feel connected to me?  Do I share enough of my heart with you, and are you excited about the adventure we are on together?  If not, then work together to un-package why that is, and what you can both do to make some change – not all at once – but perhaps one or two victories.  You’ll find that actually working this process through together, is actually helping to achieve the goal.

Oh, and guys…check in often with the female manifestation of God in your relationship (male and female he made THEM in the image of God).  She’s awesome and owns half the story and half the insight.  You’ll be surprised it’s not all about you. Why settle for half?

“She wanted a whole man, not just a half.”  ~ Bob Dylan.

Wild Byte 20/2

ImageA series of quotes or quips inspired by the writing of John & Stasi Eldredge (Ransomed Heart).

“Many people have it, actually.  It’s a confused and disheartened look…It became clear that he had simply been eroded by a number of confusing years strung together by disappointment.”

~ J.E. Walking With God, 2008.

Many men feel like this, but disappointment does not need to define who you are or what your future will be.  That is a battle you have to undertake (and win) in your own head and heart.