Saturday, January 7, 2012

Wild Goose Chase Book Notes

I recently lead a growth group that discussed the Book "Wild Goose Chase" by Mark Batterson. It was a great book and I have inlcuded my notes below...

1. Yawning Angles
a. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing. –Helen Keller
b. He will take you places you never could have imagined going by paths you never knew existed.
c. Intellectual analysis usually results in spiritual paralysis.
d. Boredom isn’t just boring, boring is wrong. You cannot simultaneously live by faith and be bored. Faith and boredom are antithetical. Unfortunately, many Christians are bored with their faith.
e. Coming out of the cage means giving up the very thing in which we find our security and identity outside of Christ.
f. Types of Cages:
i. Responsibility
ii. Routine
iii. Assumptions
iv. Guilt
v. Failure
vi. Fear
2. Goose Bumps: Coming out of the Cage of Responsibility
a. The soul lives by that which it loves. –St. John of the cross
b. Most people start to die long before their actually physical death. We start dying when we have nothing work living for. And we don’t start living until we find something work dying for.
c. Your greatest responsibility is pursuing God-ordained passions.
d. Don’t let the less important responsibilities get in the way of the greatest responsibility and opportunity of our life: following Christ.
e. Ask: Are we going to be irresponsibly responsible or responsibly irresponsible?
f. Pursuing a God-ordained passion, no matter how crazy it seems, is the most responsible thing you can do.
g. If you want to discover your God-ordained passions, then you need to identify what makes you sad, mad or glad.
h. When we delight ourselves in the Lord, new desires are conceived within us. Those internal desires become an internal compass that guides us as we embark on a Wild Goose Chase.
i. Start praying…and they quit praying and do something about it.
j. One of the greatest mistakes we make is asking God to do for us what God wants us to do for him.
k. God won’t do for us what we can do for ourselves.
l. If the twenty-first century church said less and did more, maybe we would have the same kind of impact the first-century church did.
m. If you want to see God move, you need to make a move.
n. When you take a step of faith, signs will follow.
o. I want to see God do things in me and through me that I am absolutely incapable of so I can’t possibly take credit for them.
p. Doing a good job at a bad job honors God.
3. Dictatorship of the Ordinary: Coming out of the Cage Routine.
a. God is so good at what he does, we often take Him for granted.
b. Inattentional Blindness: When we don’t see the constants in our life.
c. Ask: Where have you gotten too comfortable as a Christ follower?
d. God can show up anytime, anyplace.
e. When God wants us to experience a change in perspective. He often does it via a change in scenery.
f. Change of place + change of pace = change of perspective
g. Hurry kills everything from compassion to creativity.
h. The key to spiritual growth is developing health and holy routines. However, once the routine becomes routine, we need to disrupt it.
i. Good routines become bad routines if we don’t change the routine.
j. Small changes in routine can result in radical change.
k. We need to stop praying out of memory and begin to pray out imagination.
l. The only way you’ll find your security in Christ is by throwing down the human securities we tend to cling to.
m. Ask: Where do you find your identity? What is the source of your security?
n. Your success isn’t contingent upon what’s in your hand. Your success is contingent upon whether God extends His mighty hand on your behalf.
4. Eight-Foot Ceilings: Coming out of the cage of Assumptions
a. Instead of embracing the mystery, e come up with human explanations for supernatural phenomena.
b. Thomas Jefferson cut items out of the bible to fit his life. We cannot do that.
c. We become trapped by our own logic. Our lives are limited to those things we can comprehend with our cerebral cortex.
d. One of the most dangerous assumptions we can make is assuming e know more than we really do.
e. The smartest people are the people who know how much they don’t know.
f. The more faith you have, the fewer assumptions you will make. Why? Because with God everything is possible.
g. Act like a child. They don’t make assumptions, they swim in the sea of possibilities.
h. Jesus said, “Unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven”.
i. Faith is not mindless ignorance; it simply refuses to limit God to the logical constraints of our world. Faith is trusting God more than you trust your own assumptions.
j. It’s never too late to become who you might have been.
k. If you are still breathing, it means that God isn’t done with you yet.
l. We either hang on to our assumptions or we hang on to God.
m. I don’t want to do the best I can do, I want to do the best God can do.
n. When you give beyond your ability, God will bless you beyond your ability. When your motives are right, the law of measures kicks in.
o. We assume that the more we give, the less we will have. That is an unbiblical assumption.
p. People cannot discover new lands until they have the courage to lose sight of the shore” - Andre Gide
5. A Roosters Crow: Coming out of the Cage of Guilt
a. Your worst days are never so bad that you are beyond the reach of His grace. And your best days are never so good that you are beyond the need of God’s grace. Every day should be a day of relating to God on the basis of His grace alone. –Jerry Bridges
b. We criticize in others what we don’t like about ourselves.
c. If we don’t allow the grace of God to saturate and sanctify our sinful memories, we continue to experience false guilt over confessed sin. We become so fixated on past mistakes that we forfeit future opportunities. Our mistakes do not disqualify us from being used by God.
d. “When a man is getting better he understands more and more clearly the evil that is still left in him. When a man is getting worse he understands his own badness less and less.” –C.S. Lewis.
e. Nothing reconditions our spiritual reflexes like prayer. Start praying for those people who are difficult in your life and it will change how you feel about them.
f. Praying to forgive others doesn’t just make you feel better about them; it keeps you on your path to spiritual adventure.
g. Rule: Love people when they least expect it and least deserve it.
h. God’s love is proactive. He doesn’t wait for us to get our act together. God always makes the first move. And we’re called to follow suit.
i. Forgiveness is the way we unplug from the past.
j. God hasn’t given up on you. He can’t. It’s not His nature.
k. The best way to understand the grace of God is through right brained pictures.
l. Not only does our sin get paid for out of God’s account, but all of His righteousness gets credited to our account.
m. The Johari Window.
n. The grace of God is the difference between drowning in guilt and swimming in gratitude. When your spiritual reflexes have been reconditioned by the grace of God, it frees you up to come out of the cage of guilt and chase the Wild Goose.
i. Sin - Grace = Guilt
ii. Sin + Grace = Gratitude
6. Sometimes it Takes a Shipwreck: Coming out of the Cage of Failure
a. If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans. –John Chancellor
b. Failure handled improperly can be devastating, but failure handled properly is the best thing that can happen to us.
c. Sometimes it takes a shipwreck to get us where God wants us to go.
d. Failing to plan is planning to fail. But when we trust our plans more than we trust God, our plans can keep us from pursuing Him and His will. And sometimes our plans have to fail in order for God’s plans to succeed.
e. God often uses things that seem to be taking us off our course to keep us on His course.
f. Although you may not like the chapter of life you’re in, the final chapter has yet to be written.
g. A health relationship between a parent and child moves from dependence to independence. But a health relationship with our heavenly Father moves in the opposite direction.
h. Sin is living life independently of God.
i. God is far more concerned about our future than we are.
j. God knows his plan for us and he will get us there.
k. God is in the business of positioning us in the right place at the right time. And that ought to give us an unshakable sense of destiny even when we feel disoriented.
l. Our reasons and God’s reasons are often very different.
m. Getting where God wants me to go isn’t as important becoming who God wants me to be in the process. And God seems to be far less concerned with where I’m going than with who I’m becoming.
7. Good Old-Fashioned Guts: Coming out of the Cage of Fear
a. The price of our vitality is the sum of all our fears. –David Whyte
b. The aversion to a loss of a certain magnitude is greater than the attraction to gain of the same magnitude. Losses loom larger than gains.
c. We are often so afraid of making the wrong decision that we make no decision at all.
d. Indecision is a decision.
e. Foxe’s Book of Martyrs.
f. “Some want to live within the sound of church or chapel bell; I want to run a rescue shop within a yard of hell.” –C.T. Studd
g. The hard way is the best way.
h. When we leave church we don’t leave the presence of God. We take the presence of God with us wherever he leads.
i. “The difference between where you are and where God wants you to be may be the painful decision you refuse to make.” –Craig Groeschel
j. Play offense with your life and create a life goal list.
k. Most of us never accomplish what we want because we really don’t know what we want. We want to be successful. Yet we’ve never even take the time to define what success would look like occupationally, relationally and spiritually.
l. Vision is the cure for sin. The more vision you have the less you will sin.
8. Madonna of the Future
a. My deepest belief is that living as if you are dying sets us free. –Anne Lamott
b. “Today is the first day of your life because it has never been before, and today is the last day of your life because it will never be again.” –Frederick Buechner

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