Soul Keeping

July 28, 2015

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“Hurry is the great enemy of the spiritual life in our day. You must ruthlessly eliminate hurry from your life.”

These were the words given to John Ortberg by Dallas Willard. They were the foundation on which Ortberg launched into a journey to discover a healthy soul life.

Soul Keeping: Caring For the Most Important Part of You is a collection of reflections on his conversations with and mentorship by Dallas Willard. Ortberg blends in decades of pastoral experience into this work.

For me the book started solely with some “scholarly” definitions of the soul, but soon branched into loads of practical application.

Ortberg tackles rest, gratitude, works and grace, as well as the disappointing seasons known as the “dark night of the soul.”

Here are some of the best quotes from the book: (JO=John Orterg, DW=Dallas Willard)

“You’re a soul made by God, made for God, and made to need God, which means you were not made to be self-sufficient.” DW

soul keeping

“The soul is the capacity to integrate all the parts into a single, whole life. It is something like a program that runs a computer; you don’t usually notice it unless it messes up.” JO

“The most important thing about you…is not the things you achieve but the person you become.” DW

“I was operating on the unspoken assumption that my inner world would be filled with life, peace, and joy once my external world was perfect.” JO

“You must arrange your days so that you are experiencing deep contentment, joy, and confidence in your everyday life with God.” DW

“God made the whole earth so that he would have a place to be with man and woman, you and me. The garden God created represents God’s great desire for “being with”. JO

Our souls were made to walk with God.” JO

“Eternal life is more about the quality of life than it is the length of it.” DW

The “with God” life is not a life of more religious activities or devotions or trying to be good. It is a life of inner peace and contentment for your soul with the maker and manager of the universe.”

“Many christian expend so much energy and worry trying not to sin. The goal is not to try to sin less. In all your efforts to keep from sinning, what are you focusing on? Sin. God wants you to focus on Him. To be with him. Abide in me. Relax and enjoy his presence.” JO

Jesus lived in a divine rhythm where grace was flowing into him and flowing out from him.

I grew to enjoy this book. I’m actually making my way through it for a second time.

The material in the book is more than knowledge, it is an opportunity for application and growth. Not the “instant, right now, ” growth in a moment, but the slow, steady process of change over time.

I am looking forward to this journey.

I encourage you to join me on the journey, picking up a copy of  Soul Keeping: Caring For the Most Important Part of You

Photo by Joshua Earle

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Chris

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A missionary teacher for 24 years currently living in South Africa. I am a recovering superhero, daily in need of the grace of God

One response to Soul Keeping

  1. I was just at a Christian Worldview conference tonight (& tomorrow) and Dallas Willard was quoted many times. Isn’t it wonderful how God ties things together?!? Great quotes. Sounds like a good book too – thanks for the recommendation.

    I have to say, seeing the sociology behind the current belief system (education, science, religion, etc.) has really helped me understand why we have so much difficulty relating today, as a Christian, to those of the world. (By relating, I mean influencing them for God – not the other way.) In a day of “relative truth” it is more important than ever to know the truth of God’s Word and the truth of who we are in Him. Soul keeping indeed.