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Liberty News

Author John Ortberg addresses students

March 24, 2010 : Mitzi Bible

In his first visit to Liberty University, bestselling author John Ortberg focused on the importance of spiritual formation at Wednesday’s convocation.

Ortberg, pastor of Menlo Park Presbyterian Church in California, spoke about the two gaps in a person’s life — the first being the gap sin creates between man and God, which requires the bridge of salvation through Christ; the second is the gap between who we are at the present and who God wants us to be.

He reminded students that their lives are “not your project; your life is God’s project.”

“Only God knows what your full potential is, and God is more concerned with you reaching that potential than you are, and God is guiding that process all the time,” he said. “God has many tools at his disposal and you are meant not just to be saved by grace … [but] to live by grace … to wake up in the morning by grace and to go through your day … drawing on the power and the presence and the favor of God as you walk through your relationships and your decisions.”

To achieve this, he said it requires training — not just trying.

“To train means I arrange my life around those activities that enable me to do what I cannot do by direct effort,” he said.

It all comes down to spiritual discipline.

“It’s simply about coming to Jesus and learning how [to] live in the flow of the Spirit from one moment to the next.”


  • Ortberg is the author of “If You Want to Walk on Water, You've Got to Get Out of the Boat,” “The Life You've Always Wanted: Spiritual Growth for Ordinary People,” and his latest book, “Faith & Doubt.” Learn more about his ministry at


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