In The Screwtape Letters, C.S. Lewis investigated the interesting interplay between humility and pride. All that is really required is a simple introspective inspection on whether or not we are too self absorbed. Nowadays, we will probably see the affirmation of that question, seeing how self absorbed our society is. Me too, I mean, for Pete’s sakes I’m writing this onto a blog whose web address is my name!
In any case, the most certain way to defeat the selfishness of our current age is dedication to the exploration of God’s nature, name, reality, glory, impact, and future plans.
The great irony in this sort of activity is found in the effect of seeking out and learning about the King of Glory. The more we learn about Him, the more we desire intimacy with him. The more we accomplish relationship with that God, the more we find out about how much He loves us.
In the end, the more we give up of our own self obsession, the more we truly know about who we really are.
So if we really want to be voided of self obsession, we should give up ourselves and accept the accidental blessing of His definition.
If we really want more of ourselves, we have to give up that pursuit and instead learn His glory. And then we accomplish the first thing we pursued, only as an after effect.
When we sing “Follow You Anywhere” there is a light heart to it. As we pursue to be emptied of ourselves and filled with Him, we acknowledge that He is so high and so lofty that to be pursued by Him is a little unsettling.
It’s a little like having Jeff Zuckerberg suddenly comment on every social media post you compose. The guy literally created the platform, and now he wants to interact with me? It puts pressure on every action we take.
Fortunately, God is above the venerated Zucc. And when we find Jahweh focused in on us as a people, as individuals, we feel the crushing weight of His attention. We feel that until we also feel what Christ described as an easy yoke and a light burden. It is so light a burden that it makes it understandable that we will pay whatever cost is required just to keep following and maintain that pursuit.
Continuing in that vein, Hillsong asks “Who am I that the Highest King would ransom me?” It’s a callback to Psalm 8:3-4
When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,
and the son of man that you care for him? (ESV)
We don’t suspect we are worthy of the attention. And when we investigate Him we REALLY know we don’t deserve the thoughtfulness. The eternal nature of God is so massive beyond comprehension that He can be singularly focused on each person in existence at once. It requires complex math to understand that a God who is metrically eternal is equally divided among us to the point where it is like having a one on one relationship with Him.
Divide infinity by 1. It’s Infinity. Divide Infinity by 100.
Divide infinity by 8 billion people on the planet.
The fist time we used “God You’re So Good” Bernard came up to me and excitedly explained to me that he learned the base song “God Is So Good” in French in his home country of Congo. He then went on to sing it to me in French!
There are just some moments you don’t prepare for blessings so rich.
When we sing this song, we acknowledge His greatness again, but also the outpouring of His goodness into our lives. It is so intense an outpouring that in a flash of inspiration, we suddenly see our definition,
I am blessed, I am called
I am healed, I am whole
I am saved in Jesus’s name
Highly favored, anointed, filled with Your power
For the glory of Jesus’s name
I say again, what we are in context of this glory is nothing. It is passing. It is intransigent in comparison to how weighty our God is. Nonetheless, can we please, for the love of goodness, celebrate the life and the freedom to which we have been lifted? Can you praise Him? Can you thank Him? You belong to Him. He calls you His. You are bought and free.
That’s how good He is.
That’s how valuable you are.
That’s how valuable the person next to you is as well.
Finally, as well celebrate life, let’s celebrate the active tense of the verb “lives.” God lives. He didn’t live to the exclusion of today. He won’t live tomorrow abandoning this moment.
And that has an effect upon life and the richness of existence. It effects the glory of right now. It means that my suffering is little compared to the joy of knowing Him. It means that my child’s life can be great because He’s alive right now.
It means that as I “cross the river” to the next life, it is, as the phrase says in Deuteronomy, only a process of being gathered to my people.
Because He lives.
And life is worth the living.
Just because He lives.
Related blogs to songs in this week’s set.