Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Shack CH.10

You can see the complete Shack discussion Guide questions by opening the Guide to the right>


140 Why did Mack change his description of the water from “pretty damn cold to pretty darn cold?” Was the water getting warmer?
Why would Jesus enjoy Mack’s discomfort?
A Both the correction/confession and watching the growing awareness of relationship, friendship and forgiveness in Mack
How does Jesus react when you do things like this?
Tell of a time when you hesitated at what Jesus told you to do?
Would you do the same thing again?
Was Mack wrong to ask for clarification before he stepped off the dock?
A Nowhere in scripture do we ever find God rebuking anyone who is struggling to follow. The choice is always left to the individual, clarification is always given. Some follow immediately without reservation like the disciples, some hesitate like Moses and Gideon, Jesus asked for clarification in the Garden before the cross . Some walk away disappointed like the rich young ruler who did not want to sell his stuff.
How do you clarify what Jesus is asking you to do?
141 How does imagination make man like God?
A The ability to envision what does not exist was passed on from the creator to the created. Evolution has no real answer for this phenomena.
Where do you spend most of your time living, the past, present or future? Explain.
142 What commands your sense of the future? How accurate is it likely to be?
Remember your past projections of the future. Were they accurate? Is life today what you thought it would be 5 years ago? Share the difference with us.
What does Jesus say was Mack’s basis for thinking of the future?
A Fear; seldom is God in the picture with us fulfilling the promises.
What is your biggest fear right now?
What are you failing to believe?
How can you tell How much God loves you?
143 To you, what is “utterly ridiculous and impossible” right now?
Where do you need Jesus to walk with you right now?
If you started there now, would you be alone?
Do you need to know how to get all the way there?
What do you need to know to start?
144 How is the earth like a child right now?
A Directionless, wandering without plan or purpose. More like and orphan or unloved foster child that is used for gain rather than loved.
145 What would happen if God took absolute control of the earth right now? How would that impact Romans 11:25?
A RO 11:25 I do not want you to be ignorant of this mystery, brothers, so that you may not be conceited: Israel has experienced a hardening in part until the full number of the Gentiles has come in” God is waiting for the rest of his children to come to him before he retakes control. Do you think the last gentile is alive today? What happens when the last one comes to God?
What has God demanded of you personally?
What does Love not do? Why?
A Force it’s will on you. If it did, it would be authority and power, not relationship. God could easily force obedience, but that would not gain relationship. Andrew Murray’s classic 1898 work The School of Obedience explains that TRUE obedience to God can only come from a rich and deep relationship with the Father. Man cannot OBEY his way into the relationship. He must believe his way into the relationship. Obedience is the byproduct of the relationship. The book is well worth the read. You can find it at This is the Calvin College Christian Classic public domain web site.
What marks a genuine relationship? Are your closest relationships like that? How are they different?
A Submission to the other person.
What is submission all about?
A Love and respect inside of relationship.
How can God be in submission to his creation?
A He does not force, he offers.
146 What does this mean and imply?: “we want you to join with us in our circle of relationship. I don’t want slaves to my will; I want brothers and sisters who will share life with me”?
A Distinguishes relationship Christ is offering from religion. It is personal, not just factual. It incorporates the entire person, body, soul and spirit. I participate in the purposes of God on earth in real time. The Christian life becomes a life of gentle submission to the love of the father in faith and trust. It is innocent, childlike, confident.
Is this what Jesus really wants?
A Yes. It is what he says he wants and it satisfies my heart and mind more fully than the religious answers.
If this” circle of relationship” is salvation, how is it different from what you have thought? How is it the same?
A We don’t typically think of our close relationships as rules and regulations and expectations. Close relationships are living and loving in the context of the moment. Submission as we typically think of it is not a problem because there is unity, oneness, agreement, commitment to purpose, shared goals, trust, respect, shared energy, faith, hope and love.
How could Jesus be “Mack’s life”?
A when a person trusts Christ’s work on the Cross to save him, it is not just from sin but from the independent self that started the problems in the first place. Papa’s miracle of the new birth makes alive a once dead spirit. Jesus literally indwells the believer and makes it possible for us to experience life together as he designed it. We walk in relationship, fellowship and confidence to the degree we truly trust what we know to be true: God love me and can only do what is in my best interests. All situations are filtered through that fact.
How is submission natural?
A See above. It is natural for the new me to act like and be submissive to Christ. It is who I truly and eternally am.
How did the world break? What was lost?
A The world broke in the garden when man choose independence over relationship. Innocence was lost, the spirit that responded to God died. It can only be reborn by the power of the resurrected Christ.
147 Have you ever tried to be God for someone else? How did it work out for you?
How do people try to be God for others?
A See the Prerogatives for God on notes for page 158.
What is the hard part for a woman in returning to God?
A Women tend to look to man to meet their needs.
Why is that hard? Is it hard for you? Why or why not?
What is the hard part for a man in returning to God? Is it hard for you? Why or Why Not?
A men tend to look to themselves for security and power.
What do women turn to instead of God? What are they looking for? Will they find it?
A Women look to other relationships outside of God. Husband, friend, child, etc
What do men turn to instead of God? How well is it working?
A Men seek work to replace relationship.
148 How is filling roles the opposite of relationship?
A roles as defined by institutions and society are based on external ideals that could not possibly be universal. Roles are performance based, checklist balanced. A person could fulfill all the duties of any assigned role and still not live in relationship.
Does our body of believers pursue roles or relationships?
How do we pursue roles? The results?
How do or could we pursue relationships?
Would some stuff not get done if our body of believers emphasized pursuing relationships over roles? What impact would it ultimately have?
What would be the impact of a “circle of friendship” with God and others based fellowship?
Would sin abound in such a fellowship? Why or why not?
Why was man created first?
A to establish a circle of relationship.
What destroyed “the relationship your heart longed for”?
A Independence
How could you start fixing that right now?
A return
149 How is power the opposite of relationship?
A When power is the order of the day subservience is the order of the day. It brings duty, law, rules, regulations, hierarchy, competition, conquest, conflict and the like. Relationship brings mutual submission in love to one another based on common goals and desires. EPH 5:21 Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ. It is only truly possible in Christ.
Seriously now, doesn’t someone have to be in charge?
What is the only way anyone can submit?
A They must be reborn in Christ.
Is WWJD a bad idea?
A It would only be a poor imitation of the real thing. Jesus wants to LITERALLY live his life through us, draw us into relation with the father and Holy Spirit, make us one with his purpose and plan and see it work out through us.
Is Jesus’ life inside you literal or figurative?
If it is literal, how do we get it? What happens?
MEMORIZE THIS: I came to give you life, real life, my life. We will come and live our life inside you, so that you begin to see with our eyes, hear with our ears, and touch with our hands, and think like we do.
Is this our purpose in being? How would it change life if we lived believing this is true? (IT IS!)
How would this view of living change your thinking of John 14:12 I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.
Who would really be motivating the asking and doing the doing?
Would that mean you would be living in relationship and doing the things God does? YES IT DOES!
Is this essentially what we will be doing for eternity in heaven? Participating with God as his children in the glories of his creations. Who would not want to do that?
A Consider this: God created us to love us and live life in, with and through us. When we look at the stars and worship, God is there in us responding to and being glorified in it. In a certain sense The infinite God experiences life through his children who have invited Him in. Oswald Chambers, in My Utmost for His Highest said that according to Phil 2:13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose,) the basic will of a believer is GOD’s Will. That means I can do what I want when Christ is indwelling me. If take a day to go fishing, God is going fishing! We live life together in His power and at his direction and I honestly think that sometimes God is happy to go fishing or whatever with me. He loves to be with me and IF I am cognizant of the reality of his presence, it is going to effect everything about the experience for his glory and my good. Why just do whatever it is you are doing alone. Recognize Jesus is there, talk to him about it all, worship, laugh, listen, enjoy, really LIVE! So do whatever you truly want! Jesus wants to do it to. I know, I’m a heretic, people might get it wrong and sin! Know this: Jesus is going to be there anyway, he will NEVER Leave us or forsake us. SO LIVE FREE! Is this helping or just frustrating you? Why?


Aimee said...

Does mom know you said Damn. You are in sooo much trouble.

heidi jo said...

i wondered who would bring that up first!!! my guess is david is signed on as aimee again. :)

Don Z said...

Heidi jo. Since Aimee was with me at the family party when this comment was posted AND David is at the fire station with a computer, I am betin the farm it was DAVID being David....again. Also, I am NOT in trouble with anyone becasue I only quoted what the book said, but why did Mack change his discription of the water Temp?

heidi jo said...

he was saying what he THOUGHT Jesus wanted to hear - right? 'fear' of offending Jesus? or maybe rather shame at what he's said/done in the past - who he was? or both? why do you think? regardless, it was works, right? he was not just speaking from what he thought/felt but what he thought Jesus wanted to hear vs what He'd judge.