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pure in heart

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“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” Matthew 5:8

Thanks to my mother-in-law, I have recently discovered T.W. Hunt. He died on December 11, 2014. “T.W. Hunt met Jesus yesterday,” Southwestern President Paige Patterson said in a Dec. 12 statement. “It was a meeting of a faithful servant and his Lord, to be sure. But in a sense, it was just a reunion of old friends, because few men ever walked with God like Enoch and T.W. Hunt. via

Just to give you a clue what kind of man he was. A servant of the Lord. He wrote a handful of great books, and I just finished The Mind Of Christ.

It’s one of those books that you can’t put down because the Father is using it to renew your mind and ignite a fire in your soul. But also one you want to re-read and sit with for a few months. There will probably be a handful of posts with my reflections and learnings from this book.

In one chapter he talks about each beatitude. He writes, “the first four are keys to God’s heart. There we learn of God. The second four are the keys to expressing Christ.”

If we reserve a part of our heart for some earthly affection that separates us from God or takes precedence over God, we are not pure. All the loves of our life are related to and spring from our love for God. Being pure in heart does not require a perfect performance. Rather it requires our giving our whole selves to the Lord. T.W. Hunt

This is both challenging and beautiful to me. How about you?

It doesn’t require a perfect performance, but a mindset shift, a giving of my entire self to God and His Kingdom work. A choosing of divine affections over earthly affections.

It’s letting our passion and love and freedom and joy spring from our relationship with Him.

Lord, help us be devoted completely to You. Prune away the things that are fighting for our love. Give us eyes to see You.

Current Reads

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Here’s a list of a few of my recent reads, including a few favorite passages from each. I’d love to hear about what you are reading!

The True Vine, Andrew Murray

“Let us realize that we can only fulfill our calling to bear much fruit by praying much. In Christ are hidden all the treasures that the people around us need. In Him, all God’s children are blessed with all spiritual blessings. He is full of grace and truth. But, prayer, much prayer, strong believing prayer, is needed to bring about these blessings. And let us equally remember that we cannot appropriate the promise without first living a life given up for men. Many try to take the promise and then look around for what they can ask. This is not the way, but the very opposite. Get the heart burdened with the need of souls, and the command and power to save them will come to claim the promise.”

“You are the branch. — You need be nothing more. You need not for one single moment of the day take upon you the responsibility of the Vine. You need not leave the place of entire dependence and unbounded confidence.”

Read more…

Books Of Late

in books

In the past month, my infatuation with books of all shapes, sizes, and topics has exploded.

Below are recent reads. One of my best friends, Ashton, and I, love to trade book titles with each other. With this post, I invite you into the trading game!

On my to-read list are:

Clue me in to your favorite reads!

Read & To Read

in books

If I could have my pick at super powers, one of them might be to read a handful of books at a time, and absorb each book as if it was the only one I was reading. I have probably 3 I’m currently trying to read (obviously one wins out, but three are bumping around in my brain), 5 sitting on the bookshelf I want to read next, and 2 I recently read that I’m still mulling over. Haha, that’s me.

heartnatured

A friend suggested I check out Jodi Picoult, and I started with Nineteen Minutes. Man. It was heavy, but engaging. A story about a school shooting, fit with all of the detective investigation and emotional insights of the teens. It was one of those that you can’t put down once you start.

After I saw the movie War Room, I picked up Priscilla Shirer’s Fervent, a book about prayer. I enjoyed how Priscilla broke down prayer. She unpacked it in a way that was intriguing, inspirational, and convicting. She gave practical Scripture to pray with after each chapter, and spoke on the many values of an active, consistent prayer life. I highly recommend it.

The Practice of the Presence of God is one that I read a couple times a year. It’s a short book of letters/conversations between Brother Lawrence, a monk, and friends. I love this book because its entire premise is practicing, experiencing, and engaging with the presence of God in even the most mundane of tasks. It brings me to my knees every time I read it. It challenges me to simplify [desires, life, activities], to remember the intimacy that I can have with God, and to treasure my relationship with Jesus above all else.

Having A Mary Spirit truly changed me. Personal, authentic, life-pondering. It’s difficult to say more than that because it will probably touch and impact you in different ways than it did me. But, another high recommendation from me.

“I believe the ability to love people as we should only comes from the security of knowing we ourselves are loved. For you cannot share what you do not have. Which is another reason we need the Holy Spirit—for He bears witness with our hearts that we are God’s children, and dearly loved as well (Romans 8:15–16, 1 John 3:1).”

On my to-read list are similar books it seems…

heartnatured

I like Jen Hatmaker as a person, so I imagine I’ll enjoy For The Love as well. Also, the tagline is right up my alley: Fighting for grace in a world of impossible standards.

Disciplines of the Beautiful Woman is a recommendation of a friend of mine. This friend is one who is honest, caring, and dearly loves Jesus and people, so I’m excited to begin this book.

Another Jodi Picoult, The Storyteller. The friend who recommended the above book of hers said that this one was probably her favorite book of all time. Um, big statement. Naturally, I’m intrigued.

Lord, Change Me. I learned of this book because Joanna quoted it a couple times in Having A Mary Spirit. When I begin this book, I know my heart will be praying for the Lord to do a real, gentle, gracious, powerful work – to change. I’ll keep you posted.

Has anyone read any of these? I’d love to hear your thoughts before I dive in.

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