Saturday, November 12, 2011

There’s Something Wrong With My Thinking

“I am, by nature, selfish. I think most about me. That’s why humility is a daily struggle, a lesson I must relearn over and over.” ~Rick Warren.

The true colour of my character is assessed by others who like me least, by the mode of judgment—a common human act to attribute justice for what is seen. What I do with that is up to me, and my rapport with, and level of surrender to, God. I am the one with work to do, not them.

Yet, I do not often enough think like this, i.e. to think truthfully.

A recent diary entry:

The last two days’ studies have put into proper context the challenge, single-most, before me. As I have fought through this most recent rut by drawing close to the Lord, he has patiently shown me the error in my ways. I have fallen, for too long, to the subtleties of pride. My daily mantra needs to be centred in humility and, specifically, servanthood. That is, true sacrifice to the moment’s defined needs—others’, not mine.

By Nature, Selfish

This is an annoyingly common predilection, as I consider it personally. Interestingly, it’s when I most notice my annoyance about others’ selfishness that I’m closest to pride.

No matter how much we make a study of humility we will always need to deal with the propensity towards selfishness—our agenda over God’s; a fault at the level of our thinking and the heart beneath. Something is wrong with my thinking that only God, in his mercy, and due my surrender, can fix.

As I’ve reflected on the truth, as God has revealed it, I have started to notice just how much of me is reflected in the things I’ve been doing. Too easily I have veiled service toward my own ends.

The root issue in pride, which is the actual manifestation of selfishness, is insidious; it creeps up and deceives us. Day by day it slinks its way into our minds, burrowing deeply into the fine crevices and seeming fissures of our psyches. We are robbed a cent or two at a time; quickly and deceptively the dollars mount up, however.

The key, therefore, is keeping front of mind the daily struggle.

A Daily Struggle Turned into an Opportunity

Too easily we are overwhelmed by the comprehensiveness of such a task: to address our thinking. We can only do it one day at a time. Turning the problem into an opportunity is easy. We can manage this thing day by day as we rely on God and learn and relearn, with studious tenacity, the character trait of humility.

We must always be quick to reconcile the truth: we are naturally selfish and unnaturally humble. We have the capacity to be humble, but only when we give up our agendas for God’s agenda, and only a day at a time. Only one day at a time can we ‘fix’ our thinking—and only through God’s grace.

© 2011 S. J. Wickham.

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