Tuesday, February 2, 2010

What's your value?

Thoughts from reading William Temple's "The Church's Impact upon Society."

I have so far to go. I am convicted as I read this selection from this week's reading for the Spiritual Formations call with Dan Wilt.

How often do I look at myself or others truly as God sees them? Not often enough. So many times I place myself as the "center of reference," using my values, my grid, to determine worth. I put myself in God's place which, according to Temple, is the basis of original sin. Bingo.

My thinking, my values and grid, must originate with God, not myself, or else I am prone to faulty thinking and a misguided value system that stems from the law, not grace. I get caught up in being "concerned with people as they are, not with people as they ought to be."

TRUE value is not worth based on self. No. True value comes from what we are worth to God, and I must train my mind to view myself and others with His purposes and destiny in mind.

You are my Portion

It's quiet here. And it should be. It's early in the morning, at least for this household, and a good time for solitude, pondering, blogging.

Today my thoughts lead me towards Psalm 16:5-6. I love how God's Word comes alive and jumps off the page at me in new ways. I love having Holy Spirit for my teacher.
Psalm 16:5-6
"O LORD, You are the portion of my inheritance and my cup;
You maintain my lot.
6 The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places;
Yes, I have a good inheritance.

Here's what jumped out at me: The Lord is my portion.

I know, you've probably heard it and/or sung it in its various forms a million different times. I have. But I had never stopped to think about what that actually means.

The Lord is my portion.

I don't know about you, but when I hear the word portion, I think of it as being a part of a larger whole. And because of my still-not-wholly-renewed mindset, any portion I would receive should be relative to what is my due, what I've earned, what I've deserved.

The definition of justification by grace that I was taught growing up is essentially that I don't get what I deserve because of what Christ's death on the cross and resurrection from the grave purchased: a clean slate, a new heart. As my dad would say, it's "just as if I'd never sinned."

So why do I still operate out of a poverty mentality (for that is truly what it is) and act like my portion is based on my performance? God, help me break free!

If the Lord is my portion, there's no bigger portion out there to be had. I have the biggest portion available. He's my inheritance given to me, completely undeservedly, through the cross.

He's my cup, my lot in life. It doesn't get any better or bigger! And from that perspective, the boundary lines certainly are in pleasant places - they are infinitely good as they encompass, if that's even possible, my good, loving, just, holy, true, awesome and powerful God who gave Himself freely to me so that I might be given back to Him as His inheritance.

Blows. my. mind.