Forget about Yourself
I recently came across a quote by C. S. Lewis that has stuck with me for several days and has come to mind more times than I can remember. It is found in his book Mere Christianity in Book III, chapter 8, “The Great Sin.” The great sin to which Lewis is referring is pride. In regards to pride and knowing God, Lewis writes these words,
“The real test of being in the presence of God is that you either forget about yourself altogether or see yourself as a small, dirty object. It is better to forget about yourself altogether.”
Nowhere in Scripture are we commanded to self-flagellate. We are taught to understand ourselves rightly before a holy God and, in light of who God is, why would we ever want the focus to be us? How do we ever come to a place where we think that Christianity is about us; salvation is about MY identity; that my problem is that I have forgotten who I am in Christ; that MY happiness is most important? Perhaps Lewis sheds some light on these questions when he writes,
“In God you come up against something which is in every respect immeasurably superior to yourself. Unless you know God as that – and, therefore, know yourself as nothing in comparison – you do not know God at all.”
Paul also speaks to this matter when he states,
24 But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God. (Acts 20:24 ESV)
Paul’s concern was faithfulness to the calling of God to “to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.” Paul literally says in verse 24 that his life is not worth a single word. It would seem that he has forgotten about himself altogether and is solely focused on obedience to God. How different from our culture that is full of messages that life is all about me.
Friends, may we see the greatness of God. May we understand what it is to know him. May we forget about ourselves altogether and come to see our lives as not even worth a single word.
By His Grace Alone,