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What Do We Know About Ourselves?

Hurt people tend to hurt people. We’ve talked about it here before. Abused people abuse people. Abandoned people abandon people. We’ve all seen examples.

But who hasn’t also seen that loved people hate. Indulged people deprive. The accepted reject.

One of the recurring themes of the Bible is not only that hurt people hurt people, but that chosen, loved, and provided for people also repeatedly reject their Provider and treat others with contempt. Over and over the God of a chosen people finds it necessary to say things like, “I have nourished and brought up children and they have rebelled against me” (Isa 1:2). The Lord of the sons of Jacob goes on to say that even domestic animals know who feeds them (Isa 1:3). Yet the people of the Promised Land forsake the One who has loved them for other loves (Isa 1:4) (Isa 1:21) and treat one another as if no one has cared for them (Isa 1:23).

Wish we could say that we don’t repeat the mistakes of those who have gone before.

The beginning of a new year seems like as good a time as any to reflect on where we have been and what we already know matters most to our God, and to one another.

I’m finding that the harder question may be, “What matters most to me?”

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90 Responses to “What Do We Know About Ourselves?”

  1. Mart De Haan says:

    Just noticed a comment that bill34sl put up last night at the end of our last conversation, and thought it was too important to let pass without notice. Am copying it here

    From bill34sl:
    A number of people have greeted me a Happy New Year just like the previous years. Responding in the same way, I thought maybe it’s not really going to be happy but something else, at least on a global scale. Well, I wish it’s still going to be happy anyways, individually, to all of us participating in this blog.

    To me the year that was, is a homecoming after straying away from my Christian faith for several years. A wake up call or awakening year. I just don’t know what to call it. I operated like one of the world’s. I rebelled to my Creator. He brought me down.

    Actually, I have reservations posting this kind of testimony, but something is pushing me to. Talking about supernatural, in 2011, I experienced a few, at least on a personal level. At work I would oftentimes engage my supervisor into a yelling match. Our manager once told me in my face that he was very disappointed with my behavior. The General Manager complained about the many absences and tardiness I am making. Even the VP of the company chided me in the same way. I was a nightmare at work. I deserved to be fired.

    One day the bosses called me to a close door meeting. They told me, in 3 to 4 weeks time, they will decide my fate. I started looking for a new job because all indications point to me getting axed.

    Then the dreaded day came. I was ready for the verdict anyway. But to my shock, instead of handing me a termination paper, they handed me a Notice of PAY INCREASE! They’re retaining me and with pay increase.

    Why on earth did they do that, I have no clue. Then the Lord has the answer. He said I have to be a channel, however small, for His blessings to flow to the people in dire needs. Suddenly, I found myself entangled with 2 of Canada’s top charities operating worldwide. Trust me, I’m not rich and has only little to give.

    The reason why I had too may absences and tardiness in the job was because I would have bouts of nasty, sometimes very nasty migranes at least 2 times in a week, at times lasting for 2 days, then my left leg would hurt like crazy almost everyday. Then I begged the Lord to heal me of these illnesses if it’s His will, so I can work properly.

    Unbelievably, for many months now I don’t experience anyone of them anymore. No drugs, no medicine, nothing whatsoever. I’m so indebted, how can I thank Him? I made peace with my supervisor. I changed my attitude, our working relationship improved significantly. Hebrews 13:17 exhort us to submit to the authority of our leader.

    Each night I pray for increased faith for each passing day, for me, and for all of you here. This year may or may not be the happiest but sure it will be joyful for all God’s children as we anticipate the supernatural of meeting our Lord Jesus Christ in a day and hour no one knows. Peace, Joy and Blessings to all!

  • Bob in Cornwall England says:

    Thank you Bill for your testimony.

    Our speaker yesterday is an Indian man who lives in London but helps run orphanges in India.
    He reminds me of Gandi in the way he speaks and he is very gentle.
    Several points came through from what he said:

    We are to allow our inner man, where the Holy Spirit Lives, to have control and put our outer man, Soul, Emotions and Will, to one side, put to death on the cross.
    Listen to the inner man, God, and follow what He says.
    When God speaks He never fudges or clouds the issue, it is always black and white.

    Bill, you saw God at work in your life and responded. And by faith you then asked for healing and received it.
    Faith is the currency of this age and the only way to please God.
    We all agree there are troubled times ahead and let us continually pray and lift each other up, by faith, to our Father, releasing the inner man, putting self on the cross and letting the Holy Spirit show through to a world in desperate need of Jesus.