I have been reading Daring to think again by Dave Brisbin and I was caught by the first word of the title: DARING. When was I last daring, when did I show courage or take up a challenge.
As I began to read though I was not thinking about challenges or dare. I was basking in the love of God. For twenty pages he talks about the furious love of God that knows no bounds, is unconditional and is always there no matter who we are and what we have done.
A journey through transactional relationships – you know the ones… If I borrow your lawnmower I will bake a pie for you. The transaction of church and service: Lord if I turn up on Sunday for an hour will you get me that promotion. Lord if I help with the free dinners will you … We all know people who live in that place and we have all been there at one time or another. This speaks of contracts, a contractual arrangement much like buying groceries in a supermarket.
We do not have a contract with God. I remember years ago listening to someone tell me this and tell me that there is nothing I can do to lose or gain God’s love. And it broke my heart, quite rightly, because I thought of God’s grace as extending to every person on the planet except me. There was a codicil at the end of a long contract for humanity that said.. EXCEPT ME.
When I explored this extensively I found the word covenant. We are in covenant with God, God is in covenant with us. He said in Genesis that when he sees his bow in the sky he will remember our covenant. God is love. There is no way God can be anything else other than love.
In accepting God’s love we become family. A messy dysfunctional family that includes me and you and all the shades of humanity in between. When we become a person of love we through off the Pharisee persona that comes so easily to church folk. Brisbin challenges us:
Law applies only until we graduate from conformance to transformance: making obedience obsolete by fully identifying with the Lawgiver.Daring to Think Again Website
Since I took up the Jesus challenge, some years ago, I have been on a rollercoaster of a ride but never hitting the bottom. It is a thrilling ride of learning to love and learning to grow, modelling Jesus as much as possible and getting it wrong over and over again. The spiritual disciplines have been my lifeline throughout this long growth spurt. They have kept me grounded and allowed me to dig deep into the relationship with God.
In Daring to Think Again, Brisbin offers the traditional view and the challenge of doing life with Jesus. In my opinion this book would be great for someone who is wrestling with the hard questions intellectually. For me, it has been a familiar journey I laughed and cried with Brisbin as he recounted pivotal moments in his faith journey. I especially enjoyed his understanding of Fear of the Lord.
I cannot remember a time when I picked up a new dare like a child in a playground, because I am living a life of DARE.
I am in the life of Jesus following and I would not have it any other way.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the author and/or publisher through the Speakeasy blogging book review network. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.