Paul wrote to Timothy about the benefit of training for godliness. It has “value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” – 1 Timothy 4:8.
It is with this in mind that I come to this in Brennan Manning’s Ragamuffin Gospel –
“The truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ does not rise and fall on the issues of corrupt clergy, the exploitation of the poor, the stinginess of multinationals, or the irrational fanaticism of modern dictatorships. It deserves to be accepted or rejected for what it is: an answer to the most fundamental questions a person may ask: Is life absurd or does it have a purpose? Jesus replies that not only do our lives have purpose but God has directly intervened in human affairs to make abundantly clear what that purpose is. What is the nature of Ultimate Reality? Jesus responds that the Really Real is generous, forgiving, saving love. In the end, will life triumph over death? With unshaken confidence Jesus answers, The kingdom of My Father cannot be overcome, even by death. In the end everything will be all right. Nothing can harm you permanently; no loss is lasting, no defeat more than transitory, no disappointment is conclusive. Suffering, failure, loneliness, sorrow, discouragement, and death will be part of your journey, but the kingdom of God will conquer all these horrors. No evil can resist grace forever.”
At our core, if we are becoming who we are made to be, then we are moving further into the mystery of God’s unconditional love. No one can train for godliness without God.
May we learn how to rest and trust in His love, not our own efforts.