Made for Goodness: And Why This Makes All the Difference

Made for Goodness: And Why This Makes All the Difference In Made for Goodness, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, Nobel Peace Prize winner and international icon of peace and reconciliation, shares his vision on why we can find hope and joy in the world s darkest moments by realizing that we were made for goodness, that we are wired so that goodness will win in the end Archbishop Tutu is a spiritual leader and symbol of love and forgiveness on the level of Gandi, Mother Teresa, Dr Martin Luther King, Jr and Nelson Mandela, and Made for Goodness, written with his daughter Mpho, is one of the most personal and inspirational books he s ever writtenComing Soon Archbishop Desmond Tutu s The Children of God Storybook Bible, a daily devotional and heirloom quality keepsake This beautiful gift Bible will resonate with parents, grandparents, and educators eager to present the message of God s love, forgiveness, and reconciliation to young children This is a sweet book that reminds of us our divinity and purpose and goodness We were created by God, in His image, and we are very good We don t have to prove our goodness, we just need to remember who we are God loves us He waits for us He searches after us But we are free to choose I particularly appreciated the words about the importance of prayer and relying on God seeking His will With so much evil and with so many other distractions in life and the world it is nice to be remin This is a sweet book that reminds of us our divinity and purpose and goodness We were created by God, in His image, and we are very good We don t have to prove our goodness, we just need to remember who we are God loves us He waits for us He searches after us But we are free to choose I particularly appreciated the words about the importance of prayer and relying on God seeking His will With so much evil and with so many other distractions in life and the world it is nice to be reminded of the importance of being still, listening for God s voice, and remembering that we are ultimately good The message brings hope and purpose Here are a few of my favorite quotesWe are fundamentally good When you come to think of it, that s who we are at our core.You can see from the people we truly admire that we are attracted to goodness p 5 Evil cannot have the last word because we are programmed no, hard wired for goodness Yes, goodness can be enlightened self interest Kindness builds goodwill Generosity invites reciprocation But even if there were absolutely no material benefit to being kind, you can t counterfeit the warm glow that you have inside when you have been kind You just can t That glow is something you relish because that s how we ve been created.Goodness is not just our impulse It is our essence p 6 Goodness changes the way we see the world, the way we see others, and, most importantly, we way we see ourselves The way we see ourselves matters It affects how we treat people It affects the quality of life for each and all of us What is the quality of life on our planet It is nothingthan the sum total of our daily interactions Each kindness enhances the quality of life Each cruelty diminishes it p 7 Ultimately, what stirs us most deeply is what is life giving What is soul stirring, what is life giving, is of God We are made for God, who is the giver of life We are made by God, who holds us in life p 13 God does not love us because we are lovable We are lovable precisely because God loves us p 21 Our perfection is the price we imagine we must pay for the love of God So we strive endlessly to be good or to do good instead of realizing that we are good p 23 Perfect love is not an emotion it is not how we feel It is what we do Perfect love is action that is not wrapped up in self regard, and it has not concern with deserving Instead, perfect love is love poured out It is self offering made out of the joy of giving It requires no prompting It seeks no response and no reward p 25 A hug is such an ordinary gesture.The ordinary gift of a cuddle stands as witness to goodness p 35 God s call to be perfect is not just a command it is an invitation It is an invitation to something possible It is an invitation to something life giving, to something joy creating God invites us to a godly perfection Godly perfection is not flawlessness Godly perfection is wholeness p 43 God s invitation to wholeness always includesthan ourselves p 47 A life of wholeness can accept flaws and vulnerabilities as doors to relationship p 49 God is not willing to do anything to infringe upon our freedom p 69 Life isthan breath and a heartbeat meaning and purpose are the life of life When we recognize that our lives have meaning beyond our cares and comforts, we tap the source of true joy p 75 Because I treasure the friendship with God that has developed in those times of prayer, the habit of choosing right has been reinforced p 78 When we are well acquainted with our gifts and our deficits, we know the challenges to goodness that require our extra vigilance.Choosing what is good and right is not intended to be a solitary journey We can look to God to support our choices We can look to friends or other guides to help us along the way p 79 My precious child, I will call you to account for nothingthan I have asked of you.Just be faithful to the task I have set before you.Whether you succeed or not is not matter to me.Live as you hear me speak to you.Live the truth you learn from me.Then it doesn t matter how the road may turn.The goodness you live will set you free p 81 And old man, a villager, stood up to pray, God, we know you are with us We thank you for loving us His words surprised me Where was the evidence of God s presence What did God s love matter against the grim inevitability of the bulldozers and the apartheid machine p 100 Even in his rush to heal one man s daughter, didn t Jesus pause to heal and hear another person in need p 113 We learned, in that time, how little we knew and how heavily we had to lean on the grace of God p 113 The measure by which we judge success or failure is not God s yardstick In fact, success and failure are oftena testament to our own arrogance We think we know what our lives are meant to be We believe we know how God must use us We have the plan When our plan doesn t work, we are devastated.What might our lives feel like if we didn t march through them with a scorecard, keeping a tally of our failures and successes How would it be to stop pretending omniscience p 120 God is not waiting to clobber us In fact, just the opposite is true God reaches out to us while we are wrapped in wrong God takes the initiative God does take the initiative in everything In the relationship between God and humanity, God chose us God chose us before we were there, before the foundation of the world God said, You are going to be mine There is never a time when God says, I will wait I will hold back my affection until you aredeserving p 131 132 When we really grasp the truth of God s unconditional love, it can leave us breathless p 132 God waits God waits for the minutest sign of repentance God waits for the smallest inkling that we are turning toward God But the God of the prodigal parable does wait As we have seen, the message in that story is God s reverence for human autonomy The parable of the lost sheep is different In that story God goes out after the lost sheep.God pursues the beloved who has gone astray God leaves the saints to go in search of the sinner p 133 We may learn from the practice of forgiving others how to forgive ourselves Or we may extend the same forgiveness we offer ourselves to other people.The better we are able to forgive ourselves for our faults and failings, the better we are able to forgive others Thewe forgive others for their sins and shortcomings, thewe learn to forgive ourselves p 151 Just being, not doing, is a real challenge to most of us We have such busy, active lives We pride ourselves on the length of our to do lists We cram noise and activity into every waking minute Even when our mouths are silent, our minds are busy with their own incessant chatter Inside our heads we supply a running commentary on everything we see, feel, think, and experience Prayer puts us in a receptive mode As we still ourselves and let our yammering thoughts recede into the background, we can begin to hear the voice of God that has been speaking softly beneath the din of our demands p 160 161 In the same way that we ready our children for sleep by using rituals that shut down the distractions of the day, small rituals can prepare our minds for prayer Choosing and using a prayer place can be one such ritual..the second ritual step, selecting a time, becomes all theimportant Choose a time when you are unlikely to be interrupted p 161 162 The early Christian epistle writer Paul says in his letter to the Romans, We do not know how to pray as we ought, but he goes on to assure his readers that the Spirit helps us in our weakness.and intercedes with sighs too deep for words So even though we are probably not doing it right when we pray, we are doing it well enough p 166 Prayer is how we communicate with God, and how God communicates with us Communication is a skill It must be cultivated and practiced Afterthan half a century of happy marriage I can say, without fear of contradiction, that I am still learning how to communicate with my wife In our life together there is so much that goes unspoken, so much that is open to interpretation and misinterpretation..As the years have progressed, our mutual understanding has been deepened by love and shared history There are conversations we no longer need to have p 167 The challenge of distinguishing the voice of God from all the voices that vie for our attention is not unique to our time.The sheep could distinguish among the voices of all the shepherds, and they would follow the sound of their shepherd s voice Our times of prayer are the times when we learn the guiding voice of goodness, our shepherd s voice In our daily lives, when the stillness has fled and the fullness of life has rushed back in on us, we will still be able to discern the voice that calls us to our best selves from among the many voices that compete for our attention p 175 Our noisy passions are like an unruly kindergarten class Each hope, fear, ambition, dream, and desire tries to shout louder than the others to make itself heard The voice of God guides like a gifted teacher The experienced teacher does not address the class with a booming voice to be heard above the din He speaks quietly and calmly, a steady current beneath the noise.We can continue to react to the insistent demands of our unruly passions and remain tone deaf to God Or we can use the practice of prayer to help us hear, everperfectly, the guidance that God offers God is our constant companion God can help us to choose, from among the plethora of paths that are spread out before us, the one that leads to flourishing The guide who becomes known to us in prayer steadies us when we stumble and cradles us when we fall p 177 Do you have any idea how precious you are to God p 184 We are created for God s joy.Jesus Christ is our hope for complete wholeness, for healing that is salvation p 198 Richard BransonThis wonderful new book is a great gift to the world BonoOur boss and his daughter remind us Thich Nhat HanhThank you Archbishop Tutu for helping u come back home to our true natureMary RobinsonDesmond Tutu has walked the talk all his lifeFour bits of inane rubbish on the flyleaf of my copy of this book they are clich ridden and say nothing of any significance This unfortunately is how this book comes across too I have nothing but admiration for Archbishop Tutu Richard BransonThis wonderful new book is a great gift to the world BonoOur boss and his daughter remind us Thich Nhat HanhThank you Archbishop Tutu for helping u come back home to our true natureMary RobinsonDesmond Tutu has walked the talk all his lifeFour bits of inane rubbish on the flyleaf of my copy of this book they are clich ridden and say nothing of any significance This unfortunately is how this book comes across too I have nothing but admiration for Archbishop Tutu as a man of courage, insight and nobility but as an inspiring spiritual writer I am afraid he comes way down the line.He and his daughter co write this bookwell no they don t Tutu writes and every now and again he throws in an example of some inane bit of wet theology from his daughter Why I have no idea Her contributions are miniscule and add nothing to the whole, which is not that good to start with Sorry but this was extraordinarily unimpressive Really sad because who doesn t want to love everything Tutu says and does but it would not be honest for me to say anything other than bland, bland, bland.Part of the big problem of the book is Tutu is simply churning out paragraphs of clich ridden waffle which I, as a believing and praying Christian can fully accept and see because I have an experience that backs it up but so much of his preaching bears no reality to the majority of people s lives, makes no attempt to make inroads of discussion or explanation to those who do not share his experience Now to be fair that might not be his intention anyway but the gushing claptrap of the flyleaf contributors presents this book as the one to transform the worldwell it won t.egGoodness is not the coin from which we anxiously pay for God s love Our goodness is rather the recognition we offer and the thanks we return for the gifts and the love already given us Rather than a request for something yet to come, it is a response to the abundance of gifts that have already been given and received This I can accept and rejoice in but that is because I have an experience, no matter how imperfect, of a loving God Tutu makes no effort to reach out to anyone other than believers He talks religious speak and waffles prettily about beauty and goodness but in an artificial and pointless way.At another time he visits prisoners and tells themGod has no onebeautiful than youThis is pious claptrap Murders, child abusers, rapists..all of these may well have the capacity for beauty and they are certainly loved by God but they are not beautiful now The unconditional love of God is unconditional in other words, whether I am beautiful or not He loves me To sweep away people s cruelty and wickedness and cloak them in the pious rubbish of all of you are beautiful is to betray the challenge of our call to live lives of goodness and kindness.There is one thing I would praise to the skies in this book and that is the lovely end to each chapter Tutu writes a beautiful prayerful reflection as if God is speaking to us They are powerful and poetic and redeem the book, if not totally then certainly they go a small way to doing so Never has a book, besides the bible, made me want to break out every quote, every passage, every sentence to put on a note to remember, just why we are here on this earth I m only on chapter 3, and already I can tell just what an amazing book and author s this is I want to savor every suculent, sacred word written Soak it in, like holy water I m slowing down my reading of this, as I would poetry, so I can enjoy and relish how great God is, and how he works in our lives, if we choose to beli Never has a book, besides the bible, made me want to break out every quote, every passage, every sentence to put on a note to remember, just why we are here on this earth I m only on chapter 3, and already I can tell just what an amazing book and author s this is I want to savor every suculent, sacred word written Soak it in, like holy water I m slowing down my reading of this, as I would poetry, so I can enjoy and relish how great God is, and how he works in our lives, if we choose to believe or not God holds out an invitation to us an invitation to turn away from the anxious striving that has turned stress into a status symbol Love this book, and it came at just the right time for me Desmond Tutu and his daughter Mpho write that we humans are designed for goodness, that we can stop trying so hard to be good because at our core we already are good We can live joyfully in the knowledge that we are loved unconditionally, choosing to do right not to convince God to let us into heaven, God holds out an invitation to us an invitation to turn away from the anxious striving that has turned stress into a status symbol Love this book, and it came at just the right time for me Desmond Tutu and his daughter Mpho write that we humans are designed for goodness, that we can stop trying so hard to be good because at our core we already are good We can live joyfully in the knowledge that we are loved unconditionally, choosing to do right not to convince God to let us into heaven, but because pleasing the One who loves us so dearly is the path to happiness The Tutus are Anglican priests but write broadly to include all faiths.The section on zoning out struck home Zoning out an activity usually accomplished with the aid of a television set does not reinvigorate us.We zone out though we want to rest But we are afraid to really rest because we are supposed to be doing something I am busy, tired, and stressed, so I am entitled to a respite I will zone out in front of the television And we continue to be tired, busy, and stressed I m not against watching tv, but goodness knows how often I let my brain turn to mush watching some pointless show and find that even though my body is relaxing, my brain hasn t unwound, and I m as frazzled as ever once the screen is shut off

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