Saturday, May 1, 2010

The way to humility

Yes, I am posting twice in one day! School is winding down, can you tell? I've been reading The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis this week. The book is a collection of letters that Lewis wrote from the enemies perspective. It is a demon writing letters to his nephew about how to better tempt and destroy a man whom he is in charge of. In chapter 4 there is a part of a letter that has stuck with me all week and I am hoping that it makes a drastic change in the way my prayer life goes. Screwtape is writing to Wormwood about how to keep his patient, as they call him, from having an effective prayer life.

 He writes, "They can be persuaded that the bodily position makes no difference to their prayers; for they constantly forget, what you must always remember, that they are animals and that whatever their bodies do affects their souls."

He continues on for a few pages regarding this and this is what I came away thinking. Kneeling to pray is not an immediate fix all solution to my heart, however it is a start. Give it a try and tell me what you think. There is just something about taking the time to kneel in His presence. It is very visible reminder of where I should be all the time. All my prayers should be approached in that type of humility. He is after all a King and who am I that I should be worthy to come into His presence. I think we sometimes forget to feel and think that way. We get comfortable in our prayer time, if we make a prayer time at all. Getting down on my knees forces me to become humble. It takes sacrifice, it means a few less minutes of sleep. Oh to have to sacrifice for the One who sacrificed for me. Sometimes the way I think and act completely disgust me. I struggle and rationalize ways to end my quiet time early and shamefully there are times when I can talk myself out of just not having one. That's because sacrifice is hard. It hurts, it cost me sleep, it cost me time with friends, and it can be very lonely. But my sacrifice is nothing compared to the sacrifice that Jesus made for me.

Sacrifice hurt the Lamb as He was led away to be slaughter.
Sacrifice was the reason why the Son of God had trouble sleeping the night before His betrayal.
Sacrifice cost the Redeemer His friends.
Sacrifice was the reason why the Father turned His face away from my Savior leaving Him completely alone.

The results of my sacrifice are nothing compared to the things that He endured because of His sacrifice. Surely I can handle the small of amount of pain, the few minutes of less sleep, the few memories I will miss out with friends, and surely I can handle a feeling of loneliness so that I might draw nearer to Him.

Sometimes I don't feel like praying, sometimes I don't feel like worshiping, sometimes I don't feel like smiling, however God says to do so. I often find that when I am obedient, even when I don't feel like it, God blesses me. Too often we think that feelings must come first. I need to get my heart in the right place before I say a prayer, or sing a song to Him. I agree with that, but sometimes the first step in righting our heart is preforming the action. When I come to church in a sour mood, not wanting to sing I suck it up and sing. I sing because God tells me to worship Him. As I am obeying Him eventually my heart follows. Kneeling doesn't mean you are humble it says that you want to be humble and you are taking the necessary action to get there.

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