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The Wisdom of Tenderness Paperback – 1 Jul 2004
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For every thirsty pilgrim who has wandered life s desert of brokenness seeking an oasis of grace, your search is over. --Philip Gulley, author of Just Shy of Harmony
Don't be deceived by the title; this is the demanding, unyielding, impatient tenderness of God that will break your heart and (if you let it) give your heart new life --John Ortberg, author of "If You Want to Walk on Water, You've Got to Get Out of the Boat"
A passionate, luminously articulate challenge to Christians to move beyond fashionable idolatries and become authentic followers of Jesus....resonant with intelligence and imaginative power --The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette
From the Back Cover
Brennan Manning writes that all changes in the quality of a person's life must grow out of a change in that person's vision of reality. He argues that by relating to God as the heart of tenderness, we can begin to develop a spiritual life that lets go of worry, stops organizing everything as means to an end, and begins to live fully in the awareness of God's infinite grace and mercy in each moment. By accepting the tenderness of God, our hearts will begin to open, our minds can discern truth, and we can more readily see the divine in others.
Manning calls into question the prevailing vision of God as a remote overlord who alternately purveys judgment and blessings to his creatures below. He shows how this distorted image of God leads to a spirituality that is shallow and how it is ultimately in conflict with the message of the Gospel.
Rooted in his compelling grasp of God as a loving parent, Manning gently invites us to embrace the unfathomable mercy, grace, and love of God. A profound exploration of the challenges of Christian living, The Wisdom of Tenderness leads
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Manning has two core messages: 1) We are depraved people in need of rescue, and 2) God's grace is relentless in delivering that rescue. Since he first wrote "Ragamuffin Gospel", he has continued to explore these two themes from different angles. "Ruthless Trust" focused on the nature of true trust and our need to trust God. "The Signature of Jesus" focuses on what true discipleship looks like, the stamp of this loving God on the ragamuffin soul.
"The Wisdom of Tenderness" focuses on our need to "let go and let God", as John Wimber used to say. It is about living a life of letting God minister his love to us. The chapter titled "Fierce Mercy" is worth the price of the book alone. By the end of this chapter, when Manning wrote, "We're so poor that not even our poverty is our own," I felt as if I had *finally* grasped Manning's message (with my heart) to quit trying to earn God's grace and just let him give it to me.
I'm wired such that I'm trying to earn God's approval even when I think I'm not. Manning's message is such a breath of fresh air in our performance-based society. And its repetition in his various writings is a critical reminder of its importance. If we would be free, we must breathe this message frequently.