Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Curiouser and Curiouser

"There is a great deal of difference between an eager man who wants to read a book and the tired man who wants a book to read." - C.K. Chesterton

There is a curious mark of our age which is driven by purposeful ignorance.  Reading, understanding, stretching the mind... it all seems so long ago, or something relegated to the realm of academics, but certainly not for real life.  After all, we think, we're too busy for that sort of stuff.  There's life to live!  If it doesn't affect me, why learn it?  Yet at the same time we complain of not knowing things, or the ignorance of other people.  It is curious how when we are faced with a problem, and we are shown a solution, we yet choose to ignore that solution for the preference to complain.  Knowledge is like this.  We consider thinking to be too hard (and it is hard at times), but ignore the benefits.  We look for entertainment or the antidote to our boredom.  We prioritize these things over the desire to read God's word, pray, or learn something to help us better understand the Bible or teach something to others.  It is curious indeed how too often we prefer to ignore all this and instead stagnate.

Paul writes in Philippians, "I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus."  This implies effort.  Hoping and wishing does not get us to the goal.  We must press on toward Christ by the grace and strength of our Lord.  And how do we know Christ but by reading his word, which also takes effort.  Effort that is too often shunned.  We need to think, and some, sadly, have abandoned that long ago.  It is curious how when answers and truths lay in front of us, we flatly refuse them because we would rather not lift a finger.  Curious, but not surprising.  May God continue to have mercy on us.

"It isn't that they can't see the solution. It is that they can't see the problem." - G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Secret of Rivers

"Perfect humility dispenses with modesty." - C.S. Lewis

There is much that is astonishing about our existence.  We were made in the likeness of God.  God loved us enough to send his only Son to die a death we deserved so that we could be with Him forever in paradise; we who are the cause and purpose of his death.  While these things are astonishing that they would be so, they are certainly not cause for use to think much of ourselves.  Humility, of course, is the opposite of pride.  By it's very nature it is the most difficult of any virtue to attain.  Every sin we commit is caused at its root by pride.  We say to ourselves that our way is more important than God's way.

Yet when we think of humility, we often mistake it with modesty in attitude.  But true humility has no need of such a thing because true humility doesn't think of itself in the first place.  They simply are who they are by the grace of God.  The truly humble person doesn't consider themselves from the start, not "I need to work on being more modest".  They focus on God primarily and others as an outflow of that primary focus.  When focusing on honoring and glorifying God, it is hard to feel puffed up.

What a difficult virtue humility is, yet it is what we are called to.  Pride is the original sin, and the root cause of so many others.  Weeding it out may be most difficult of all, but it is worth every effort and struggle toward that goal!  We strive onward in the strength and grace of our God.

'You come of the Lord Adam and the Lady Eve,' said Aslan. 'And that is both honour enough to erect the head of the poorest beggar, and shame enough to bow the shoulders of the greatest emperor in earth.' - C.S. Lewis © 2010. layout by Chaotic Soul :: Converted by Randomness