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“But what’s interesting is that I see striving in our culture, but also in religious culture. We talk about grace, but I don’t feel like that’s often what we teach. We preach grace—you’re saved by grace—but then you’re absolutely taught that you also need to work and do “these things.” You need to volunteer here, and you need to show up there, and you need to have perfect attendance, and you need to … “all of these things.” We aren’t saved by grace AND this, this, this and this … it’s just grace. But we have a tendency to add on all of the extras.” —Renae Kulhawe

In this episode, Renae and Cindy tackle what material they’re currently reading, conversations they’re presently having, truths the Holy Spirit is challenging them with, and how the word “strive” is causing them to consider what striving actually looks like in their day-to-day lives.

What does success really mean?
How do we live in a place of grace when we live in such a striving and success-driven culture?
And what does it mean to find a third way?

Striving manifests itself in the look of performance, in attendance, in being well put together, in having all the answers, in showing up to everything. That, in a way, can appear to be a form of striving—making it seem like you have to present yourself at this perfect type of Christian.

But that’s the hard thing with striving, you don’t even realize that it’s there, that that’s what you’re doing.

I rarely feel in the moment that I’m striving. But when I look back, I can be pretty overwhelmed that absolutely I am striving so hard to figure it out, or to be something, or to get it together, or to understand it, or whatever. And that’s not living in freedom, or in grace, or with trust.” —Renae Kulhawe

Questions To Consider:

  • What’s your take on striving?
  • Where do you see it in your life?
  • Where do you see it in culture?
  • Where do you see it in religion?

Mentioned In This Episode:

  • The Way of the Dragon or the Way of The Lamb: Searching for Jesus’ Path of Power in a Church That Has Abandoned It” by Jamin Goggin and Kyle Strobel
  • Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living” by Shauna Niequist
  • Rising Strong: How the Ability to Reset Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead” by Brene Brown
  • Mere Christianity: The Case for Christianity, Christian Behavior & Christian Apologetics and One of the Most Influential Books amongst Evangelicals” by C. S. Lewis
  • Quote: “Don’t aim at success—the more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one’s dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one’s surrender to a person other than oneself. Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it. I want you to listen to what your conscience commands you to do and go on to carry it out to the best of your knowledge. Then you will live to see that in the long run—in the long run, I say! —success will follow you precisely because you had forgotten to think of it.” by Viktor E. Frankl,Man’s Search For Meaning
  • Quote: “Answers end conversations, questions start them.” by Rabbi David Wolpe