Thursday, January 30, 2003
Do not be too quick to assume that your enemy is an enemy of God just because he is your enemy. Perhaps he is your enemy precisely because he can find nothing in you that gives glory to God. Perhaps he fears you because he can find nothing in you of God's love and God's kindness and God's patience and mercy and understanding of the weaknesses of men... Do not be too quick to condemn the man who no longer believes in God, for it is perhaps your own coldness and avarice, your mediocrity and materialism, your sensuality and selfishness that have killed his faith.
- Thomas Merton, Meeting The Enemy
Who's the real enemy? Too often we are our own worst enemy, knowing exactly where we're weak, knowing all too well our own faults/failures/shame. We give the devil the day off, dwelling on our own shortcomings and making much of how pitiful we are. Or worse, we swing the other way and let pride take over - again, taking the place of the enemy by puffing ourselves up, making much of what amounts to nothing...
Dang, we're good.
Calvin Miller devotes a whole section of INTO THE DEPTHS OF GOD to the importance of confession. We weren't meant to hang onto the guilt and condemnation for which Christ died. If we're too overburdened, then we're not as close to Him as we thought. And while humility is of utmost importance, it's also important to not give into the lie of self-deprecation and an I'm-a-worm-woe-is-me mentality/theology that makes little of God's creation and Christ's sacrifice. In real confession and
real humility, God is the whole focus - not ourselves, but our eyes on Him.
Just working on the followthrough...