Wednesday, July 07, 2010

The Wrongness of Feeling Unworthy

Last night at a charismatic praise gathering I heard a talk given by a young neighbor of mine (young = early 20s) about this matter of feeling unworthy of the gifts God gives. The subsequent Scriptures and words shared all flowed into a theme of our need to embrace the reality of who we are in Christ.

I really appreciated his talk. He read from Psalm 8, "What is man that you are mindful of him?" but then boiled down the matter to this: Yes, ok, on the one hand, who am I that God should give me gifts, but more importantly, who am I to turn away from God the Father Almighty because I feel unworthy of His approach to me?

That nails it.

When God approaches a soul, all of the grace that is needed by that soul to stand before Him is made available. To turn aside is to refuse God's grace and cling to pride instead. Our self-absorption is revealed, brought to light. If, however, we acknowledge God's grace and praise Him for who He is (the One who approaches, Love, Light), then we can accept the gifts He brings -- not because of any evaluation of worthiness on our part (for that is not the economy in which God operates) -- but because clearly it is His will to bring a gift. To submit to God's will is to accept the embrace of His love which floods our hearts with joy and delight. This embrace cleanses us, purifies us, enables us to appropriately respond.

Then the question "Who am I, oh Lord, that you are mindful of me" becomes not one of self-reproach or even of trying to coax oneself into believing that one is acceptable by God. It becomes a question of wonder. The wonder originates with God. I am nothing spectacular, nor are you, per se. There are billions of humans pretty much just like us. And yet the wonder arises because of the One who has made you. His love makes you, in His mind at least, unrepeatable, captivating, priceless, precious.

So accept what He brings you.

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