We’re rapidly nearing the end of our study through Or The Normal Christian Life by Watchman Nee. My Bible study has just one chapter left and then we’ll be breaking for the holidays so I am hurrying to finish up these chapter summaries/outlines/reflections. Whatever they are. Mostly I just write these so that the things I learned have a more solid place in my mind. It’s kind of like writing a term It forces you to think one more time to solidify the knowledge. And it also just gives me a good gathering place for quotes.
Chapter 10: The Path of Progress: Walking in the Spirit (on Romans 8)
This chapter balances out the book for me. It draws our eyes away from everything we can’t do and sets them squarely back on the One who can do. And frees us up a bit from worrying about doing everything right and instead allows us to turn to reliance on the Holy Spirit’s guiding.
We have the Holy Spirit for a reason, after all.
“Living in the Spirit means that I trust the Holy Spirit to do in me what I cannot do myself.”
“Where there is real victory, it is not fleshly effort that carries us through, but the Lord. ”
“The very highest point the will can reach is that of willingness. (See Matthew 26:41)”
“But God has never told us to force ourselves to be what we are not naturally; to try, by taking thought, to add to our spiritual stature.”
“Many of us know that Christ is our life. We believe that the Spirit of God is resident in us, but this fact has little effect upon our behavior. The question is, do we know him as a living Person, and do we know him as “Boss”?”
Chapter 11: One Body in Christ
This chapter really reminded me of my series last month. Nee talked about how God works differently through different people, we all know different things, and we can’t really understand how it’s done. The last quote here struck a nerve with me as I’m trying to find a place in a new community.
“We must be careful to avoid the temptation to oversimplify the work of God.”
“We must beware of forcing any rigid pattern on the Holy Spirit’s working”
“Redemption is big enough, wonderful enough, to occupy a very large place in our vision, but God is saying that we should not make redemption to be everything, as though man were created to be redeemed.”
“We need never feel our contribution is not needed, for if it contributes to the service God is satisfied.”
“But in Christ, the things we do not know, others do, and we may know them and enter into the enjoyment of them through others.”
“God does not blame me for being an individual, but for my individualism. His greatest problem is not the outward divisions and denominations that divide his Church but our own individualistic hearts.”
Definitely some good words to consider. Each chapter I question my resolve to write a recap, but when I begin I realize how good it is to think about it one more time.
So yup. I’m off to rake some leaves this afternoon so they’re not caught under the snow all winter like last fall! What are you up today? Do you have any thoughts on these quotes or chapters?