Wednesday, January 26, 2005

The Hidden Smile of God

One of my favorite quotes comes from the book, The Hidden Smile of God by John Piper. This quote is found on page 112. It was an eye-opening, convicting quote the first time I read it and it really snapped me out of my pity party once and for all.

"While I was a student at Wheaton College, a very wise and deep and happy teacher of Literature, Clyde Kilby, showed us and taught us this path to health. Once he said, 'I shall not demean my own uniqueness by envy of others. I shall stop boring into myself to discover what psychological or social categories I might belong to. Mostly I shall simply forget about myself and do my work.'

And then, my favorite line: Mental health is, in great measure, the gift of self-forgetfulness. The reason is that introspection destroys what matters most to us -- the authentic experience of great things outside ourselves.

I especially like that he calls self-forgetfulness a "gift" because, truly, without the grace of God, who has the power to forget the all-encompassing, ever present reality of our own existence? (And multiply that by a thousand if you are living with chronic pain or suffering of any kind)!

I think the first step to acheiving this self-forgetfullness is to immerse yourself in the moment-by-moment discipline of God-rememberance and memorizing Scripture will give you an amazing jump start.

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