A Final Update

Hello to everyone (if there still is anyone) who is aware of this blog after all this time! I apologize for leaving so suddenly, but I was being drawn away and after posting that Brennan Manning video, it seemed like a perfect place to let it rest and just allow it to “be.” After all, that video said all I hoped I could convey in the three years I spent on this blog.

But two years is a long time to repress all the good quotes and pieces of wisdom I come across, and in an effort to keep from annoying and driving away all my Facebook friends, I started a Facebook page called “Ragamuffin Quotes” that you can access here. I have affectionately dubbed it the “drive-through version” of this blog.

Thanks to anyone who followed me through the years. If I affected one person it was all worth it.

As I realized during prayer the other night, the world changing would be wonderful, but it only takes one person to keep hope alive in others, and that is the greatest thing I could accomplish.


“Did You Believe That I Loved You?”


Verse of the day

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But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things.

— Philippians 3:7-8

A Lover Who Keeps No Score of Wrong

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From Abba’s Child by Brennan Manning:

Throughout my retreat with [the gospel of] John as my companion and guide, I was struck by his choice of verbs and adverbs in narrating his own perception of Jesus and that of others.

Upon being told by her sister Martha that Jesus had arrived in Bethany and wanted to see her, Mary got up quickly and went to him. Mary of Magdala is heartbroken and tearful when she finds the tomb empty. At the moment of recognition when Jesus calls her name, she clung to him. As soon as Peter and John receive word of the empty tomb, they ran together to the garden, but the other disciple, running faster than Peter, reached the tomb first.

Peter, the denier of Jesus, a failure as a friend in the hour of crisis, jumped into the water almost naked once John told him Jesus was on shore. “At these words, ‘It is the Lord,’ Simon Peter, who had practically nothing on, wrapped his cloak round him and jumped into the water” (21:7). John notes that the boat was about a hundred yards offshore.

These biblical characters, however clean or tawdry their personal histories may have been, are not paralyzed by the past in their present response to Jesus. Tossing aside self-consciousness they ran, clung, jumped, and raced to him.

Peter denied him and deserted him, but he was not afraid of him.

Suppose for a moment that in a flash of insight you discovered that all your motives for ministry were essentially egocentric, or suppose that last night you got drunk and committed adultery, or suppose that you failed to respond to a cry for help and the person committed suicide. What would you do?

Would guilt, self-condemnation, and self-hatred consume you, or would you jump into the water and swim a hundred yards at breakneck speed toward Jesus? Haunted by feelings of unworthiness, would you allow the darkness to overcome you or would you let Jesus be who he is — a savior of boundless compassion and infinite patience, a Lover who keeps no score of our wrongs?

John seems to be saying that the disciples of Jesus ran to him because they were crazy about him; or, in the more restrained prose of Raymond Brown, “Jesus was remembered as one who exhibited love in what he did and was loved deeply by those who followed him.”

Quote of the day

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“Turn around and believe that the good news that we are loved is better than we ever dared hope, and that to believe in that good news, to live out of it and toward it, to be in love with that good news, is of all glad things in this world the gladdest thing of all. Amen, and come Lord Jesus.”

― Frederick Buechner

Man of No Reputation

(This has got to be one of my favorite songs of all time)

“Man of No Reputation” by Rich Mullins and a Ragamuffin Band

It was said this man was of no reputation
Yet he could stop the rising storm
With a gesture of his hand
But he chose to use his hands to heal
Hearts of darkness, hearts of stone
Just like mine would be revealed

He was a man of no reputation
And by the wise, considered a fool
When he spoke about faith and forgiveness
In a time when the strongest arms ruled

But this man of no reputation
Loved the weak with relentless affection
And he loved all those poor in spirit just as they were
He was a man of no reputation

It was said this man brought only confusion
That he’d achieve his ends by any means
And the truth that it brings revolution
And for once they were right
The truth set us free

The hearts of the captive were his only concern
And the powerful knew their days were ending

He was a man of no reputation
And by the wise, considered a fool
When he spoke about faith and forgiveness
In a time when the strongest arms ruled

But this man of no reputation
Loved the weak with relentless affection
And he loved all those poor in spirit just as they were
He was a man of no reputation

One day soon the gates of heaven will open wide
And the Prince of Peace will come back for his bride
But for now we live on these streets
Forbidding and tough

Where push always comes to shove
And it’s said love’s never enough
Where a prophet in rags gives hope to a fearful world
No injustice, no heart of darkness
Will keep this voice from being heard

He was a man of no reputation
And by the wise, considered a fool
When he spoke about faith and forgiveness
In a time when the strongest arms ruled

But this man of no reputation
Loves us all with relentless affection
And he loves all those poor in spirit, come as you are
To the man of no reputation

Stuff From Other Blogs

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(From heisjealousforme.tumblr.com)

Something simple I realized last night — nothing in this world satisfies. People are addicted to money, sex, alcohol, relationships, possessions, clothes, drugs, food, and everything else because it never fills them. They always end up wanting more. Because they were MADE for more. Nothing here satisfies like God does. Nothing.

I had the knowledge of this given to me almost a year ago when I realized that we were made for eternity so temporary things cannot possibly fill us. And last night, I had the revelation of experience. We are so often sad only because we are looking for complete satisfaction inside of things that are not complete. Jesus is all in all and only he can fulfill that desire.

Do not go searching for what you have freely in those things that will enslave you. Because the only reason they enslave you is because you are looking for, within them, the only thing that can free you.

“The world and its desires are passing away, but the word of God remains forever.”
– John 2:17

Random Moment of Prayer

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Show me your face, let me hear your voice;
For your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely.

(Song of Songs 2:14)

Quote of the day

“I may, I suppose, regard myself, or pass for being, as a relatively successful man. People occasionally stare at me in the streets — that’s fame. I can fairly easily earn enough to qualify for admission to the higher slopes of the Internal Revenue — that’s success. Furnished with money and a little fame even the elderly, if they care to, may partake of trendy diversions — that’s pleasure. It might happen once in a while that something I said or wrote was sufficiently heeded for me to persuade myself that it represented a serious impact on our time — that’s fulfillment.”

“Yet I say to you, and I beg you to believe me — multiply these tiny triumphs by a million, add them all together, and they are nothing — less than nothing, a positive impediment — measured against one draught of that living water Christ offers to the spiritually thirsty, irrespective of who or what they are.”

— Malcolm Muggeridge

Unearned Love

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From The Relentless Tenderness of Jesus by Brennan Manning:

God’s love is based on nothing, and the fact that it is based on nothing makes us secure. Were it based on anything we do, and that “anything” were to collapse, God’s love would crumble as well. But with the God of Jesus no such thing can possibly happen.

People who realize this can live freely and to the full.

Remember Atlas, who carries the whole world? We have Christian Atlases who mistakenly carry the burden of trying to deserve God’s love. Even the mere watching of this lifestyle is depressing. I’d like to say to these weary Christian Atlases, “Lay down your load and build your life on God’s love.” We don’t have to earn this love, neither do we have to support it. It is a free gift. Jesus calls out, “Come to me, all you Atlases who are weary and find life burdensome, and I will give you rest.”

[Yet] the unearned love of God can be disturbing. The idea of reward without work might put a brake on our dedication to the gospel. I mean, why struggle to do good if God loves so recklessly and foolishly? It appears to be a sensible, valid question.

[James Burtschaell writes] “But those who truly know the God of Jesus are not likely to ask why they should be laboring for the kingdom while others stand around all day idle. They want life and they have found the fullness of life in God himself… the rest of us may ask why we should bother to live uprightly if God is going to be so generous, but not those who have found the God of Jesus. Only when our inner vision is blocked by resentment, outrage, anger, or envy do we find ourselves threatened by God’s love. The last prayer of Jesus on the cross, ‘Father, forgive them. They know not what they do,’ is a testament from one who knew what God is like.’”

… what this says simply is that the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ is gracious. His love is gratuitous in a way that defies our imagination.

Quote of the day

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“Ruthless trust is an unerring sense, way deep down, that beneath the surface agitation, boredom, and insecurity of life, it’s gonna be alright. Ill winds may blow, more character defects may surface, sickness may visit, and friends will surely die; but a stubborn, irrefutable certainty persists that God is with us and loves us in our struggle to be faithful.”

“A non-rational, absolutely true intuition perdures that there is something unfathomably big in the universe, something that points to Someone who is filled with peace and power, love and undreamed of creativity — Someone who inevitably will reconcile all things in himself.”

— Brennan Manning

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