Tuesday, 10/20/20 – Pressing on… First Laws…

First Laws…

“The first law of physical life is self-preservation.
The first law of spiritual life is self-sacrifice.”

I noticed this statement written in the margin of my Bible as I turned to Pastor Andrew’s Sunday passage. Launching from 1 John 3:16-21, he then led us through a quick tour of the Ten Commandments (Exod. 20:1-17) showing how even the “nicest” of us have failed to keep them.

Why such harsh approach? Why is it so often necessary to be so humbled… so destroyed in ourselves?

Self does not like to die… to be humbled… to be shown it cannot rise to the level of Spirit. “Self” wants to make excuses for itself. Wants to believe it can “be like the Most High” (Isa. 14:14). It does not want to trust another for to do so means it must surrender some control which “self” always wishes to keep. It means sacrifice which self abhors.

“The first law of physical life is self-preservation.
The first law of spiritual life is self-sacrifice.”

But what self does not see is that it has engaged in an impossible task. Like all other selves it knows it is mortal. The goal of self-preservation is at best only temporal. Trying just a bit harder… amassing just a bit more…. Controlling one more thing… just a wee bit more praise, adulation and self-glory. But no. It is like drinking saltwater… never quenching, only stimulating more thirst.

But the soul that yields self’s throne to the Spirit soon sees that all self has amassed and held to is nothing more than burden. Dead weight. None of it is useful. Keeping it only debilitates. The soul now seeks surrender… riddance of all burden… ousting of the tyrant “self.” Through sacrifice the soul become a lighter… it discovers Living Water… it finds itself with Spirit wings. It discovers it was never meant to trudge and plod. It was meant to fly!

All of this begins with a willfully humility. Embracing at last the Lordship of Another… daily… hourly… accepting joyfully and responsively to frequent reminders… rejoicing in our becoming again what we were always meant to be! Micah summarizes it well…

He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
    And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
    and to walk humbly with your God.” (Micah 6:8).

An earthquake is coming. This ground is now shaking. Soon, very soon, we must all fly or perish.

More tomorrow…

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