(Picture by Michelle O’Connell via Creative Commons)
Have you ever stopped and looked at yourself and just thought
“What an asshole”
I seem to find myself doing this a lot. More often than I really should. It applies to my thought life more than anything. Sometimes we make a comment to someone and it sounds great to them, even positive.
But inside our heart is thinking something else.
We’ve all done something we almost instantly regret. We give in to a temptation which we find it hard to resist. Our hearts desires can be exposed and we see why we really did or said whatever we’ve done or said.
Others may not even notice. They may not even sense it.
But underneath, we know ourselves and our motivations. We know our attitudes. We hear ourselves say something and immediately realise what it really says about us, what it says about our hearts – or how underneath the surface, it’s completely hypocritical.
And we just think “What an absolute idiot I am. I should be ashamed of myself”
Maybe it’s only me who does this. But I know most of the time I seem to give off the impression of being a ‘good guy’ when underneath I know a lot of the time, I’m just not.
And when I see the monstrous side of me, I despise myself. And I feel like I have let down not just those I love or myself, but God. And I wonder why God keeps putting up with this garbage from me all the time.
Broken promises too numerous to mention.
Poor treatment of His other creations.
Childish rants and selfish prayers.
When you see the monstrous side of yourself you realise how little you deserve to be loved. And in my experience, I feel even more angry with myself when I realise just how loved I am. Just how much I’m valued and appreciated.
Not just by God, but by others. I know how much they have given to me, and I see this other side of myself they don’t see, and think
“If they really knew me, they’d never want to see me again” (you can tweet that here)
This makes the concept of marriage even more of a miracle. Although I don’t have personal experience of marriage, all the couples I know who’ve been married a long time say the same thing – it’s hard work.
And I completely understand why. Because this other person gets to see inside this person you hide. When you live with someone, share your life with them, you are letting them into this world.
And in marriage, they have chosen to commit to you anyhow. Despite you monstrous side.
Here we see again the metaphor of Christ and the church. Because this is exactly what God has done with us. He has committed to love us, serve us, honour us and be faithful to us even with our dark side. Even with the parts we think are monstrous.
I don’t know about you, but for me, this a true miracle. Because I know myself. I know how much of an ass I can be. And for anyone to choose to love me despite this, knowing the monster I can be inside, well that’s just amazing.
It’s miracle toward a monster.
The heart of grace.
Do you ever look at yourself and see a monster inside?
How much have you truly embraced God’s grace for you?
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