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The loneliness of suffering

By Dave Henning / November 18, 2012

In his extended discussion of Abraham and Isaac on their journey to Mt. Moriah, author John Ortberg (The Life You’ve Always Wanted) notes that although Abraham and Isaac walked together to build a sacrificial altar, Abraham was very much alone.  Abraham and Isaac were separated by an unspeakable barrier, because Abraham was burdened by what […]

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Tenacious obedience

By Dave Henning / November 17, 2012

The concluding chapter of The Life You’ve Always Wanted is entitled “A Life of Endurance: The Experience of Suffering”.  In that chapter author John Ortberg compares our life journey to running a marathon.  Although the initial part of running a marathon is pleasurable, endurance soon takes a great deal of effort and becomes laborious- the […]

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What does this mean?- the sequel

By Dave Henning / November 16, 2012

“Whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”-Colossians 3:17 Commenting on this passage, author John Ortberg (The Life You’ve Always Wanted) states that in the Bible a person’s name generally had something to do with his/her character.  However, what […]

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A well-ordered heart

By Dave Henning / November 15, 2012

In the Preface to The Life You’ve Always Wanted, author John Ortberg expressed his hope that readers would take the book as “an invitation to live Christ’s Way, because it is the only invitation that really matters”.  This invitation is supported by a wonderful quote from Soren Kierkegaard (The Prayers of Kierkegaard) that begins Chapter […]

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Meditating on Scripture

By Dave Henning / November 14, 2012

John Ortberg concludes Chapter 11 of The Life You’ve Always Wanted with 5 suggestions for the practice of meditating on Scripture: 1.  Before you begin reading the Bible, pause to ask God to speak to you through your reading that day and anticipate that He will do so. 2.  Read God’s Word with a repentant […]

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Washed by the Word

By Dave Henning / November 13, 2012

” . . . just as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word . . .”-Ephesians 5: 25-26 John Ortberg states in Chapter 11 (“An Undivided Life”) of The Life You’ve Always Wanted that in order for […]

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Approval addiction

By Dave Henning / November 12, 2012

Why do we often respond strongly to criticism?  Why are we so concerned with what others think of us?  Why is our self-image so bruised by the emotional and spiritual devastation of adversity?  John Ortberg discusses these issues in Chapter 10 of  The Life You’ve Always Wanted.   He labels the tendency to fixate on negative […]

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Pursuing guidance

By Dave Henning / November 12, 2012

Author John Ortberg continues Chapter 9 of The Life You’ve Always Wanted by discussing 4 misconceptions about spiritual guidance: 1.  Guidance bears no resemblance to “insider information”.  Pastor Ortberg states that many people give little thought to spiritual guidance until they face a major life decision such as whom to marry or what job to accept.  […]

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LIstening to God

By Dave Henning / November 11, 2012

John Ortberg opens Chapter 9 (“The Guided Life”) of The Life You’ve Always Wanted with the astute observation that is one thing to speak about God, yet quite another thing to listen.  In George Bernard Shaw’s play St. Joan, one of the characters asks Joan why God’s voice never speaks to him as she claims […]

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The reality of forgiveness

By Dave Henning / November 10, 2012

“Many Christians are unthinkably horrified when a real sinner is suddenly discovered among the righteous.  So we remain alone with our sin, living in lies and hypocrisy . . . . He who is alone in his sins is utterly alone.”- Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Life Together     John Ortberg opens Chapter 5 (“Life Beyond Regret: The Practice […]

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The Ministry of “Bearing”

By Dave Henning / November 9, 2012

“Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the Law of Christ.”- Galatians 6:2 John Ortberg titles Chapter 6 of The Life You’ve Always Wanted “Appropriate Smallness”, a reference to humility in  the life of servanthood.  One way to enter that life of servanthood is through what the author calls The Ministry […]

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The grace of humility

By Dave Henning / November 8, 2012

Richard Foster (Celebration of Discipline), cited by John Ortberg in The Life You’ve Always Wanted, describes how Jesus’ statement that He had come “not to be served but to serve” (Matthew 20:28) models how the grace of humility is worked into our lives: “More than any other single way the grace of humility is worked […]

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