“All things excellent are both difficult and rare”

Spinoza was onto something, I think. And it seems especially germane today. I’m amazed at how often I find myself wondering, “Certainly there is an easier or faster way to do this.” Now, it’s not like I have good reason to think that in those particular circumstances, and I’m aware that efficiency and progress can be important values, but when it’s just a general assumption about how life should be easier in an advanced and technologically drunk society like ours, uh… something’s wrong. And I think it affects our assumptions about spiritual growth and church ministry. Certainly we can just buy something or start a program or make our website to be a little more 2.0… Yeah, I don’t think so. There’s no easy way to memorize Scripture and get it into your head and heart. There’s no substitute for flat-out praying with God. Why should we expect a fast track to an excellent relationship with God?! We are talking about the unfathomable, perfectly holy God of the Universe. Easy? Not so much.

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