"Knowing that the journey of faith will not be easy, they do not become discouraged when difficulties come. Knowing an adversary will oppose their efforts, they are not surprised or unprepared when the enemy attacks. As they set out on their way, they expect the early going to be difficult, but they know that the end of the journey will be great.
It is not without merit that those who pursue authentic faith in this manner are called pilgrims and strangers. A pilgrim is one who is on a journey. When the journey transcends his normal borders, he becomes a stranger. He is like a businessman who is sent into a new territory with the task of executing his job with diligence and tenacity and then returns home as soon as possible. Whatever pleasures he enjoys along the way, he enjoys with moderation. He is thankful when the weather is pleasant but is not diverted from his task when storms come.
He is a traveler. He expects the unexpected. But as he travels, he knows he traveling to 'a better country' (Heb. 11:16). He can observe the practices of this strange land and associate with its inhabitants. He even attempts to speak their language and where appropriate adopt their fashions, but he makes sure that he is not sidetracked or delayed along the way from accomplishing what his master has sent him to accomplish. He has business to which he must attend. He knows there will be temptations and distractions. He knows the enemy wants to delay and derail his advancement. This means that he must maintain his focus and direction. To make sure he is on the right track, he needs periodically to stop and take stock. Is he traveling in the right direction? Has he become distracted? Often he has the sense that he is making good progress. At other times he feels as if he is getting nowhere. All the passions of life are experienced along the way.
...This is no dreary duty! This is challenge and excitement. This is the ultimate adventure. This is what life was meant to be."
"What is good in only a matter of opinion in secular society. Using society's own standards of goodness, careful observation of the bigger picture of the bigger picture may reveal that a particular good has been outweighed by general evil. When a society defines its own morality and then applies it to itself, that society can justify its own serious breaches of character. It is able to lower the standard to the detriment of all.
Even in the best of cases, the fundamental problem still exists that the motivation for life is still man-centered instead of God-centered. Goodness is no substitute for devotion. In its culturally defined forms, goodness can exist where love of God and passion for His glory do not."
"Life is war. The casualties are millions, and the stakes are eternal. What we need today is not a call to simplicity, but a call to war. We need to think in terms of 'wartime lifestyle' rather than a 'simply lifestyle.' I have used the phrase 'necessities of life' because Paul said in 1 Timothy 6:8, 'If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content.' But this idea of simply necessity can be misleading. I mean it to refer to a style of life that is unencumbered with nonessentials - and the criterion for 'essential' should not be primitive simplicity, but wartime effectiveness... Life is war. All talk of a Christian's right to live luxuriously 'as a child of the King' is this atmosphere sounds hollow - especially since the King Himself stripped for battle."
"Jesus did not ask us to be indifferent to whether we are destroyed. On the contrary, He assumes that the longing for true life will move us to deny ourselves all the lesser pleasures and comforts of life. The measure of our longing for life is the amount of comfort we are willing to give up to get it."
Just talked to my sister this morning and squealed for a good while about The Eagle of the Ninth coming to film next fall. Oh... my... goodness... Directed by a man who loved the book as a child? Cinematographic directing by Slumdog Millionaire's director? Channing Tatum as Marcus? (Granted he isn't a great actor, BUT perfect as Marcus!) This is a movie I will definitely see on opening day when I'm back in the States.
Enjoy the only pic that has been released so far!