If we are honest in our practical theology (the belief we live out), we would say change first then grace. The emphasis on what we do, the steps we need to take, be it noble or be it desperate, overshadows the truth of grace. Resisting Grace attempts to flip back this theology to being right side up again: Grace first, change follows. Individuals, families, communities and nations change, not because of the mustarding of moral efforts but because love has been experienced first and so we love.

Richard Rhor is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors. We may comes from different places of the kingdom but I have felt a kindred spirit with him. I want to know the mystery, the mysticism of grace in my life and pass it on the my wife, my child , my friends and to the world.

Moralism Instead of Mysticism, Richard Rhor

God always entices us through love.

Most of us were taught that God would love us if and when we change. In fact, God loves you so that you can change. What empowers change, what makes you desirous of change, is the experience of love and acceptance itself. This is the engine of change. If the mystics say that one way, they say it a thousand ways. But because most of our common religion has not been at the mystical level, we’ve been given an inferior message—that God loves you when you change (moralism). It puts it all back on you, which is the opposite of being “saved.” Moralism leads you back to “navel-gazing,” and you can never succeed at that level. You are never holy enough, pure enough, refined enough, or loving enough. Whereas, when you fall into God’s mercy, when you fall into God’s great generosity, you find, seemingly from nowhere, this capacity to change. No one is more surprised than you are. You know it is a total gift.

Adapted from Following the Mystics Through the Narrow Gate
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