Crazy Love – A Chapter Review
while on vacation in august i received a direct message on twitter from angela smith. if you dont know who angie is, go here. anyhoo…she asked if id be willing to be a part of a book club that her and jessica turner were putting together. for those of you who dont know…jessica is matthew paul turners waaaay better, hotter half 😉 so, i agreed to write my thoughts on one of the chapters from francis chans book crazy love. and here are my thoughts on chapter 3, titled – crazy love…
(and i used capitals and punctuations 🙂 )
I am thoroughly loving Crazy Love! Francis Chan starts out this chapter by talking about his father. I was immediately gripped by this statement…
dad and DAD
“The concept of being wanted by my father was foreign to me.”
I, all too well, know what that feeling is like. After I read that I was overwhelmed by the amount of children and adults who carry that concept around with them. (side note: fathers…your role & presence in your child’s life is crucial & will have lasting effects on them)
Chans view of God was directly affected by his relationship with his own dad. He didn’t want to bother God or annoy Him.
Although my relationship with my father was incredibly strained, it had no affect on my relationship with God my Father. I found that comparison interesting. Until I realized, Chan had grown up learning about God. He was taught about Gods limitless and unconditional love. That must have been difficult for him to wrap his head around when compared to his relationship with his earthly father. I can see how his view of God would be tainted in light of that.
Me, on the other hand, did not learn of God til I was in my late teens. So, I did not grow up measuring one against the other, only to be left with a distorted view. Oddly, that leaves me very grateful for my late introduction to the Lord.
I wonder if this is true with others.
In Love with the One I Fear
I love this section of chapter 3. Chan speaks to something I struggled with for years! “Quiet Times”. He says…
“Jesus didn’t command that we have a regular time with Him each day. Rather, He tells us to, “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”
This truth should leave us, by default, in near constant connection and conversation with the Lord.
1 Thess 5: 16-17 “Be joyful always; pray continually”
This should naturally move us from a gnawing feeling of obligation to a realization that it is our treasured gift to be in His presence at any time. I eventually learned through the years that God is not an appointment to be kept but rather a privilege to behold. However, this is something I still have to work on every day.
This section got me real good. Okay, all the sections did.
This was where I really began identifying with the whole father vs. Father concept. Having been abandoned by my own dad, the word “wanted” in relation to God did resonate in me. Then Chan said something I wish I would have heard, or found on my own, long ago when I struggled with feeling “unwanted”…
“…we were created to “do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” (Eph 2:10) …. My existence was not random nor was it an accident. God knew who He was creating, and he designed me for a specific work.”
Wow. If I, or any of us, were unwanted – why would God create me, us, for a specific purpose? Yet, we doubt, don’t we? We question our abilities and qualifications and even our worth. But God’s words here, and plan, prove otherwise. I absolutely love this!
Chan goes on to use Jeremiah as an example. Jeremiah was in doubt, feeling he could not speak to the nations – he was only a child. To which God responds by reaching down to touch His lips, affirming that He has equipped Jeremiah with what he needed according to His plan.
He has touched us! He has supplied absolutely everything we need to fulfill His work, the work He has created us for. I had to ask myself after reading this…have I even come close to tapping in to that provision? Have you?
A Strange Inheritance
Chan has a great way of making huge points while not even writing a lot. This section is the shortest in the chapter and he wasted no time shooting from the hip.
Did you know we are God’s inheritance? (Ephesians 1:18) MmmHmm. We are God’s inheritance. I, being the conditional-fallible-judgmental human being that I am, would instantly think – “what a cruel joke!” They’re My inheritance? Can’t I have a time share in Bali instead?
But He didn’t respond that way. He sees us as glorious. Glorious! I wonder if we viewed ourselves the same way He views us if we would live differently for God?
Do I Have A Choice?
A college student once asked Chan, “Why would a loving God force me to love Him?” While Chan did not have an answer for that student at the time – he eventually concluded this…
“…if God is truly the greatest good on this earth, would He be loving us if He didn’t draw us toward what is best for us (even if that happens to be Himself)? Doesn’t His courting, luring, pushing, calling, and even “threatening” demonstrate His love? If He didn’t do all of that, wouldn’t we accuse Him of being unloving in the end, when all things are revealed?”
After reading that I immediately remembered hearing once that we want God to be our Savior, just not our Lord.
Chan appropriately asks, “Are we in love with God, or just His stuff?”
I confess…I love the warm fuzzies of love. But with love comes sacrifice. With love comes revelation, things revealed that would be easier left unnoticed or unchanged. At least that’s what we try to convince ourselves of. But any love worth having is worth giving up ourselves for. Isn’t that what we try to do with our spouses, our children, our friends? How much more should we be drawn and compelled to love the Lover of our souls with a wild, passionate and Crazy Love?
~ i encourage you all to read this book for yourself if you havent already. you may get something completely different from it than ive shared here. so please, pick it up and read through it. you will not regret it.
~and also, stay connected to other chapter reviews from some fabulous people by visiting the bloom blog weekly.