“Long story short: we don’t get to make our lives up. We get to receive our lives as gifts. The story that says we should have no story except the story we chose when we had no story is a lie.
To be human is to learn that we don’t get to make up our lives, because we’re creatures. Christians are people who recognise that we have a Father whom we can thank for our existence. Christian discipleship is about learning to receive life as gift without regret.”
Stanley Hauerwas, ‘The politics of gentleness: Abled and disabled’, Christian Century (Dec 2,2008), 32.
“A sense of God’s relation to us as a Father, is necessary to this delight [ie. prayer]. We may use other titles and appellations of God, but as a Father he is the ultimate object of all evangelical worship, of all our prayers: so it is expressed in that holy and divine description of it, given us by the apostle, “Through Christ we have access by the Spirit to the Father’ (Eph 2:18). No tongue can express, no mind can reach the heavenly placidness and soul – satisfying sweetness which are intimated in these words. Without a due apprehension of God in this relation, no man can pray as he ought; and we can have no sense hereof but by the Holy Ghost, who ‘bears witness with our spirits, that we are the children of God’ (Rom 8:16).”
John Owen, The Holy Spirit, 358.