Friday, 31 August 2007

Looking good this summer?

1 Peter 5: 5 "Young men, in the same way be submissive to those who are older. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble."

In a society obsessed with appearance and with our own egos so preoccupied with how we look, this verse is very striking. What is proper Christian adornment? Simply character, particularly humility. I am to put on virtue rather than trendy clothes, hold up a mirror to my soul rather than to my face, to beautify my character rather than my appearance. I am to live inside-out. Now, I guess this can sound a little trite in some ways, but when you really think about it, it is very powerful stuff because it brings a completely different orientation to our lives. If we were to spend more time gazing at our souls rather than shop windows, and to spend more mental energy focused on extending our character rather than our wardrobe, surely big changes would come about in our lives. We might even suggest that our focus on clothes and fashion is not just idolatrous, but an attempt to cover over moral bankruptcy - we are perhaps clothing our moral nakedness with fashion. It's not just an over-preoccupation, but a diversion. It is, after all, easier to buy a FCUK t shirt than it is to 'wear' humility or love. You can't buy character.

And the warning/promise at the end of the verse makes it all very serious. If my adornment is pride then I can be sure that God will oppose me - surely a frightening thought. But if I am humble I can depend upon a wonderful promise - the grace of God.

Thursday, 30 August 2007


I read CJ Mahaney's book "Humility: True Greatness" this summer. Here are his list of suggestions for inculcating true humility.

1. Reflect on the wonder of the cross
2.Begin your day by acknowledging your dependence upon God and your need of God.
3. Begin your day by expressing gratitude to God.
4. Practice the spiritual disciplines.
5. Seize your commute time to memorize and meditate on Scripture.
6. Cast your cares upon him (anxiety is rooted in pride).
7. At the end of the day transfer all glory to God.
8. Receive the gift of sleep from God and acknowledge your need and His purpose in it. (ie you are a dependent, created being)
9. Study who God is.
10. Study the doctrine of grace.
11. STudy the doctrine of sin.
12. Play golf as much as possible.
13. Laugh often, and laugh often at yourself
14. Identify evidences of grace in others.
15. Encourage and serve others.
16. Invite and pursue correction.
17. Respond humbly to trials.

Spurgeon on how great God is

Muslims say "God is great", but I reckon they should read some Spurgeon on what the greatness of God really means....

"His mercy is so great that it forgives great sins to great sinners, after great lengths of time, and then gives great favours and great privileges, and raises us up to great enjoyments in the great haven of the great God."

Monday, 27 August 2007


I'm now back after a long, restful and stimulating holiday!