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Brennan Manning urges us toward creative listening imagining God’s words to us as such (I invite you to close your eyes and imagine Jesus speaking these words to you now): “Has it crossed your mind that I am proud you accepted the gift of faith I offered you? Proud that you freely chose Me, after I had chosen you, as your friend and Lord? Proud that, with all your warts and wrinkles, you haven’t given up? Proud that you believe Me enough to try again and again? Are you aware how I appreciate you for wanting Me? I want you to know how grateful I am when you pause to smile and comfort a child who has lost her way. I am grateful for the hours you devoted to learning more about Me; for the word of encouragement you passed on to your burnt-out pastor; for your visit to the shut-in; for your tears for the retarded. What you did to them, you did to Me. Alas, I am sad when you do not believe that I have totally forgiven you or you feel uncomfortable approaching Me."