Jesus Christ is a God whom we approach without pride, and before whom we humble ourselves without despair.

-Blaise Pascal

              

I may have trouble seeing, but I’m not blind.  The harder I have tried to make the people in my life prouder of me and happier for knowing me—the more I realize I have disappointed instead.  I have failed others as well as myself.  I know my failures are obvious and we’d rather ignore them—although some may wish to publicize them for reasons of their own.  Does my life exist to make a name for myself or build a legacy I can be proud of?  I am more apt to be a colossal failure than I an amazing success.  I don’t much like it really—and my friends tell me I need to stop beating myself up and over it.
 
Alright—point made.
           
I concede.
 
But it don’t change the facts.
     
 He told his next story to some who were complacently pleased with themselves over their moral performance and looked down their noses at the common people: “Two men went up to the Temple to pray, one a Pharisee, the other a tax man. The Pharisee posed and prayed like this: ‘Oh, God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, crooks, adulterers, or, heaven forbid, like this tax man. I fast twice a week and tithe on all my income.”
        
”Meanwhile the tax man, slumped in the shadows, his face in his hands, not daring to look up, said, ‘God, give mercy. Forgive me, a sinner.'”
      
Jesus commented, “This tax man, not the other, went home made right with God. If you walk around with your nose in the air, you’re going to end up flat on your face, but if you’re content to be simply yourself,  you will become more than yourself.”   (Luke 18:9-14, The Message Bible)       
                
I’m not giving myself a hard time.  I’m really being pretty easy on myself considering.  I’m not going to write to beat myself up.  Likewise, I didn’t decide to write to build myself up.  And just as I’m not going to talk about my accomplishments—I’m not going to flog myself.  The excruciating details surrounding my failures are irrelevant, there’s no good to come of that for goodness sakes.  What I will do is write about how much my inability to save myself or anybody else only highlights the sufficiency of God in Christ Jesus. 
      
And in the end I won’t rise up to be anyone in and of myself—Jesus has leaned over and helped me up.
    
I will need more of the same in the days to come.     
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