First Steps – October 8, 2018

“But sooner or later we must distinguish between what we are not and what we are.  We must accept the fact that we are not what we would like to be.  We must cast off our false, exterior self like the cheap and showy garment that it is.  We must find our real self…created to be a child of God, and capable of loving with something of God’s own sincerity and His unselfishness.” (Thomas Merton-No Man Is An Island).

Often we present one view of ourselves to others, and we withhold who we really are as if behind closed doors.  Perhaps it is fear.  Maybe we are scared of what people will think of us if they really see who we are.  The net effect is an inauthentic life.

What is interesting to me is that the message of the New Testament is one that recognizes the inconsistencies of what we are and what we are becoming.  To some degree it is a paradox.  We are both sinners and saints—at the same time.  God is aware of this and is not fooled by our inabilities to be authentic.  Therefore, at some point we must become more comfortable with the paradox of sinner and saint.  Perhaps the more we get comfortable with what we are and what we are becoming with the help of God’s Spirit, the less likely we are to live inauthentically.


This week’s reading:

  • Monday – Ephesians 6
  • Tuesday – Philippians 1
  • Wednesday – Philippians 2
  • Thursday – Philippians 3
  • ​Friday – Philippians 4

Please Pray for:

  • Our nation and our leaders.
  • Our families, homes, workplace, church, and community.
  • Our new year in Christian studies and activities.
  • Those that are suffering and grieving.
  • Ongoing Building Renovations, Modifications, and Phase 3: Construction of New Youth Building and rear parking.
  • The United Methodist Church.