“Fellow labourer in the gospel of Christ.” 1 Thess.
OSWALD: “I have to learn that the aim in life is God’s,
not mine. God is using me from His great personal standpoint, and all He asks
of me is that I trust Him… He can crumple me up or exalt me, He can do anything
He chooses. He simply asks me to have implicit faith in Himself and His
goodness. Self-pity is of the devil.” (November 10th)
THOUGHT: “Self-pity is of
the devil,” Oswald says. Pretty harsh words to describe the emotionally cushy
shroud I’m often tempted to wear. After all, self-pity is never completely unjustified.
Life offers plenty of reasons to wall ourselves in
with our pain so that we might lick our wounds and tend our battered egos.
In times like these, self-pity always appears to be a friend,
tenderly wrapping itself around our bruised feelings and commiserating with our
pain. Whispering how badly we’ve been treated and how we deserve to wallow in
the sorrow of it all.
Usually I don’t recognize self-pity’s demonic origin because
it seems the justifiable response. But whenever I feel the seductive weight of its
comfort pushing me down, down, down, in my mood and in my feelings, I’ve
learned to stop and reconsider my response. For entertaining self-pity is just
one step away from being enslaved to it. Believe me I know. I’ve been down its
slippery slopes a few times and it only leads to depression, discouragement and despair.
The cure to self-pity, you might ask? A new point of view.
And a generous dose of faith.
“I have to learn that the aim in life is God’s, not mine,”
Oswald writes. “God is using me from His great personal standpoint, and all He
asks of me is that I trust Him… He can crumple me up or exalt me, He can do
anything He chooses. He simply asks me to have implicit faith in Himself and
His goodness. Self-pity is of the devil.”
self-pity been knocking at your door lately, my friend? I’ve heard the doorbell
several times over the last couple of weeks.
Though it’s been hard to master my emotions so I can
exercise my faith, I’ve tried to respond to the Lord rather than resort to
self-pity. Praying out loud with Oswald, “You can crumple me up or exalt me, You can do
anything You choose. I trust You, Lord! I’m not going to give in to my
situation. I’m going to give my situation to You!”