All Time Famous Brennan Manning Quotes

Brennan Manning Quotes

Brennan Manning (1934–2013) was an American author, speaker, and former Franciscan priest who became widely known for his writings on the theme of God’s unconditional love and grace. Born Richard Francis Xavier Manning, he later adopted the name Brennan in honor of Saint Brendan.

Manning’s most famous work is probably “The Ragamuffin Gospel,” published in 1990. In this book, he emphasized the boundless love and grace of God, particularly for those who feel broken, unworthy, or marginalized. Manning spoke from his own experiences of struggle, addiction, and personal challenges, using his life story to illustrate the transformative power of God’s love.

Throughout his career, Brennan Manning wrote several other books, including “Abba’s Child,” “Ruthless Trust,” and “The Furious Longing of God.” His writings have resonated with many people seeking a deeper understanding of spirituality and a more authentic relationship with God.

Manning’s approach to Christianity and spirituality was characterized by a radical acceptance of God’s love, emphasizing the importance of grace over legalism. While he faced criticism from some quarters for his views, his work has had a profound impact on many individuals who found solace and inspiration in his message of God’s unconditional love.

Brennan Manning Quotes

1. “In every encounter we either give life or we drain it; there is no neutral exchange.”
— Brennan Manning

2. “Define yourself radically as one beloved by God. This is the true self. Every other identity is illusion.”
— Brennan Manning

3. “The greatest single cause of atheism in the world today is Christians, who acknowledge Jesus with their lips and walk out the door, and deny Him by their lifestyle. That is what an unbelieving world simply finds unbelievable.”
— Brennan Manning

4. “God loves you unconditionally, as you are and not as you should be, because nobody is as they should be.”
— Brennan Manning

5. “You will trust God to the degree you know you are loved by Him.”
— Brennan Manning

6. “In a futile attempt to erase our past, we deprive the community of our healing gift. If we conceal our wounds out of fear and shame, our inner darkness can neither be illuminated nor become a light for others.”
— Brennan Manning

7. “Be who you is, ’cause if you ain’t who you is, you is who you ain’t.”
— Brennan Manning

8. “I could more easily contain Niagara Falls in a teacup than I can comprehend the wild, uncontainable love of God.”
— Brennan Manning

9. “My deepest awareness of myself is that I am deeply loved by Jesus Christ and I have done nothing to earn it or deserve it.”
— Brennan Manning

10. “Letting ourselves be loved by God is more important than loving God.”
— Brennan Manning

11. “Our identity rests in God’s relentless tenderness for us revealed in Jesus Christ.”
— Brennan Manning

12. “Lord, when I feel that what I’m doing is insignificant and unimportant, help me to remember that everything I do is significant and important in your eyes, because you love me and you put me here, and no one else can do what I am doing in exactly the way I do it.”
— Brennan Manning

13. “A ragamuffin knows he’s only a beggar at the door of God’s mercy.”
— Brennan Manning

14. “Real freedom is freedom from the opinions of others. Above all, freedom from your opinions about yourself.”
— Brennan Manning

15. “The Good News of the gospel of grace cries out: We are all, equally, privileged but unentitled beggars at the door of God’s mercy!”
— Brennan Manning

16. “The Christian with depth is the person who has failed and who has learned to live with it.”
— Brennan Manning

17. “A saint is not someone who is good but who experiences the goodness of God.”
— Brennan Manning

18. “I have been seized by the power of a great affection.”
— Brennan Manning

19. “In Love’s service, only wounded soldiers can serve.”
— Brennan Manning

20. “Craving clarity, we attempt to eliminate the risk of trusting God. Fear of the unknown path stretching ahead of us destroys childlike trust in the Father’s active goodness and unrestricted love.”
— Brennan Manning

21. “The deepest desire of our hearts is for union for God. God created us for union with himself. This is the original purpose of our lives.”
— Brennan Manning

22. “The temptation of the age is to look good without being good.”
— Brennan Manning

23. “To live by grace means to acknowledge my whole life story, the light side and the dark. In admitting my shadow side I learn who I am and what God’s grace means.”
— Brennan Manning

24. “We are made for God, and nothing less will ever satisfy us.”
— Brennan Manning

25. “Craving clarity, we attempt to eliminate the risk of trusting God.”
— Brennan Manning

26. “That which is denied cannot be healed.”
— Brennan Manning

27. “Genuine self-acceptance is not derived from the power of positive thinking, mind games or pop psychology. IT IS AN ACT OF FAITH in the God of grace.”
— Brennan Manning

28. “The litmus test of our love for God is our love of neighbor.”
— Brennan Manning

29. “We should be astonished at the goodness of God, stunned that He should bother to call us by name, our mouths wide open at His love, bewildered that at this very moment we are standing on holy ground.”
— Brennan Manning

30. “God is enough. That is the root of peace. When we start seeking something besides Him, we lose it.”
— Brennan Manning

31. “The ancient spiritual tradition is that God gives himself fully to us in silence and solitude.”
— Brennan Manning

32. “In human beings, love is a quality, a high-prized virtue; in God, love is His identity.”
— Brennan Manning

33. “Suffering, failure, loneliness, sorrow, discouragement, and death will be part of your journey, but the Kingdom of God will conquer all these horrors. No evil can resist grace forever.”
— Brennan Manning

34. “Hope knows that if great trials are avoided great deeds remain undone and the possibility of growth into greatness of soul is aborted.”
— Brennan Manning

35. “There is an essential connection between experiencing God, loving God, and trusting God. You will trust God only as much as you love him. And you will love him to the extent you have touched him, rather that he has touched you.”
— Brennan Manning

36. “There is a beautiful transparency to honest disciples who never wear a false face and do not pretend to be anything but who they are.”
— Brennan Manning

37. “Grace is sufficient even though we huff and puff with all our might to try and find something or someone that it cannot cover. Grace is enough.”
— Brennan Manning

38. “To lend each other a hand when we’re falling, perhaps that’s the only work that matters in the end.”
— Brennan Manning

39. “Hope your wildest hopes, dream your maddest dreams, imagine your most fantastic fantasies. Where your hopes and your dreams and your imagination leave off, the love of my Heavenly Father only begins.”
— Brennan Manning

40. “Our hearts of stone become hearts of flesh when we learn where the outcast weeps.”
— Brennan Manning

41. “Jesus comes not for the super-spiritual but for the wobbly and the weak-kneed who know they don’t have it all together, and who are not too proud to accept the handout of amazing grace.”
— Brennan Manning

42. “The ragamuffin who sees his life as a voyage of discovery and runs the risk of failure has a better feel for faithfulness than the timid man who hides behind the law and never finds out who he is at all.”
— Brennan Manning

43. “Accepting the reality of our sinfulness means accepting our authentic self. Judas could not face his shadow; Peter could. The latter befriended the impostor within; the former raged against him.”
— Brennan Manning

44. “How glorious the splendor of a human heart that trusts that it is loved!”
— Brennan Manning

45. “When a man or woman is truly honest, it is virtually impossible to insult them personally.”
— Brennan Manning

46. “The ragamuffin gospel says we can’t lose, because we have nothing to lose.”
— Brennan Manning

47. “Faithfulness requires the courage to risk everything on Jesus, the willingness to keep growing, and the readiness to risk failure throughout our lives.”
— Brennan Manning

48. “Being the beloved is our identity, the core of our existence. It is not merely a lofty thought, an inspiring idea, or one name among many. It is the name by which God knows us and the way He relates to us.”
— Brennan Manning

49. “Our culture says that ruthless competition is the key to success. Jesus says that ruthless compassion is the purpose of our journey.”
— Brennan Manning

50. “Faith will become vision, hope will become possession, but the love of Jesus Christ that is stronger than death endures forever. In the end, it is the only thing you can hang onto.”
— Brennan Manning

51. “I asked for wonder, and He gave it to me.”
— Brennan Manning

52. “God is loving us – you and me – this moment, just as we are and not as we should be.”
— Brennan Manning

53. “The ragamuffin gospel reveals that Jesus forgives sins, including the sins of the flesh; that He is comfortable with sinners who remember how to show compassion; but that He cannot and will not have a relationship with pretenders in the Spirit.”
— Brennan Manning

54. “The god who exacts the last drop of blood from his Son so that his just anger, evoked by sin, may be appeased, is not the God revealed by and in Jesus Christ. And if he is not the God of Jesus, he does not exist.”
— Brennan Manning

55. “Do you honestly believe God likes you, not just loves you because theologically God has to love you?”
— Brennan Manning

56. “I believe that the real difference in the American church is not between conservatives and liberals, fundamentalists and charismatics, nor between Republicans and Democrats. The real difference is between the aware and the unaware.”
— Brennan Manning

57. “Ruthless trust ultimately comes down to this: faith in the person of Jesus and hope in his promise.”
— Brennan Manning

58. “I knew there was only one place to go. I sank down into the center of my soul, grew still, and listened to the Rabbi’s heartbeat.”
— Brennan Manning

59. “We even refuse to be our true self with God- and then wonder why we lack intimacy with him.”
— Brennan Manning

60. “Authentic Christianity should lead to maturity, personality, and reality. It should fashion whole men and women living lives of love and communion.”
— Brennan Manning

61. “Anyone we come in contact with, we either offer them life, or we drain them.”
— Brennan Manning

62. “The only kind of love that helps anyone grow is unconditional love.”
— Brennan Manning

63. “Trust is our gift back to God, and he finds it so enchanting that Jesus died for love of it.”
— Brennan Manning

64. “My trust in God flows out of the experience of his loving me, day in and day out, whether the day is stormy or fair, whether I’m sick or in good health, whether I’m in a state of grace or disgrace. He comes to me where I live and loves me as I am.”
— Brennan Manning

65. “The men and women who are truly filled with light are those who have gazed deeply into the darkness of their own imperfect existence.”
— Brennan Manning

66. “Prayer is first and foremost an act of love.”
— Brennan Manning

67. “Those who have the disease called Jesus will never be cured.”
— Brennan Manning

68. “Trust is that rare and priceless treasure that wins us the affection of our heavenly Father.”
— Brennan Manning

69. “When I get honest, I admit I am a bundle of paradoxes. I believe and I doubt, I hope and get discouraged, I love and I hate, I feel bad about feeling good, I feel guilty about not feeling guilty. I am trusting and suspicious. I am honest and I still play games. Aristotle said I am a rational animal; I say I am an angel with an incredible capacity for beer.”
— Brennan Manning

70. “Today on planet Earth, may you experience the wonder and beauty of yourself as Abba’s Child and temple of the Holy Spirit through Jesus Christ.”
— Brennan Manning

71. “What makes a genius? The ability to see. To see what? The butterfly in a caterpillar, the eagle in an egg, the saint in a selfish person, life in death, unity in separation, God in the human and human in God and suffering as the form in which the incomprehensibility of God himself appears.”
— Brennan Manning

72. “The unwounded life bears no resemblance to the Rabbi.”
— Brennan Manning

73. “God not only loves me as I am, but also knows me as I am. Because of this I don’t need to apply spiritual cosmetics to make myself presentable to Him. I can accept ownership of my poverty and powerlessness and neediness.”
— Brennan Manning

74. “When being is divorced from doing, pious thoughts become an adequate substitute for washing dirty feet.”
— Brennan Manning

75. “For me the most radical demand of Christian faith lies in summoning the courage to say yes to the present risenness of Jesus Christ.”
— Brennan Manning

76. “The gospel declares that no matter how dutiful or prayerful we are, we can’t save ourselves. What Jesus did was sufficient.”
— Brennan Manning

77. “Jesus reveals a God who does not demand but who gives; who does not oppress but who raises up; who does not wound but who heals; who does not condemn but forgives.”
— Brennan Manning

78. “But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.” – 2 Corinthians 3:16-18.”
— Brennan Manning

79. “Do the truth quietly without display.”
— Brennan Manning

80. “No man can adequately reach and explain a single word of God with all his words.”
— Brennan Manning

81. “Though it is true that the church must always dissociate itself from sin, it can never have any excuse for keeping any sinner at a distance.”
— Brennan Manning

82. “A trusting heart is forgiven and, in turn, forgives.”
— Brennan Manning

83. “Without exposure to potential failure, there is no risk.”
— Brennan Manning

84. “Faith means wanting God and wanting to want nothing else.”
— Brennan Manning

85. “I am wonderfully content with a God who does not deal with me as my sins deserve.”
— Brennan Manning

86. “The gospel will persuade no one unless it has so convicted us that we are transformed by it.”
— Brennan Manning

87. “The secret of the mystery is: God is always greater. No matter how great we think Him to be, His love is always greater.”
— Brennan Manning

88. “All that is not the love of God has no meaning for me. I can truthfully say that I have no interest in anything but the love of God which is in Christ Jesus. If God wants it to, my life will be useful through my word and witness. If He wants it to, my life will bear fruit through my prayers and sacrifices. But the usefulness of my life is His concern, not mine. It would be indecent of me to worry about that.”
— Brennan Manning

89. “On the last day, Jesus will look us over not for medals, diplomas, or honors, but for scars.”
— Brennan Manning

90. “We encounter God in the ordinariness of life: not in the search for spiritual highs and extraordinary, mystical experiences, but in our simple presence in life.”
— Brennan Manning

91. “The first step in faith is to stop thinking about God at the time of prayer.-.”
— Brennan Manning

92. “Our huffing and puffing to impress God, our scrambling for brownie points, our thrashing about trying to fix ourselves while hiding our pettiness and wallowing in guilt are nauseating to God and are a flat denial of the gospel of grace.”
— Brennan Manning

93. “To be alive is to be broken. And to be broken is to stand in need of grace. Honesty keeps us in touch with our neediness and the truth that we are saved sinners. There is a beautiful transparency to honest disciples who never wear a false face and do not pretend to be anything but who they are.”
— Brennan Manning

94. “A man doesn’t grow old because he has lived a certain number of years. A man grows old when he deserts his ideal. The years may wrinkle his skin, but deserting his ideal wrinkles his soul.”
— Brennan Manning

95. “If in our hearts we really don’t believe that God loves us as we are, if we are still tainted by the lie that we can do something to make God love us more, we are rejecting the message of the cross.”
— Brennan Manning

96. “Only reckless confidence in a Source greater than ourselves can empower us to forgive the wounds inflicted by others.”
— Brennan Manning

97. “The cultural propaganda embodied in two liquor advertisements, “Living well is the best revenge” and “Sip it with arrogance,” have a curious, perhaps demonic appeal. Consumerism indeed has its own spirituality.”
— Brennan Manning

98. “The dominant characteristic of an authentic spiritual life is the gratitude that flows from trust.”
— Brennan Manning

99. “One thing we do know: We don’t comprehend the love of Jesus Christ.”
— Brennan Manning

100. “All that is good is ours not by right but by the sheer bounty of a gracious God.”
— Brennan Manning

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