“Education may make my self-centeredness less disastrous by widening my horizons. But this is like climbing a tower which widens the horizons of my vision while leaving me still the center of reference. The only way to deliver me from my self-centeredness is by winning my entire heart’s devotion, the total allegiance of my will to God- and this can only be done by the Divine Love of God disclosed by Christ in his life and death.”- William Temple
So, I discovered this quote the other day and thought it was brilliant. I'm only sad I didn't read this earlier in my seminary career! I just completed my last assignment and gave my last researched talk in seminary tonight and I'm feeling both a sense of relief and sadness. It is hard to believe that in a few short weeks, my time at Covenant Lane will end and God will propel me forward, just as he has in the past.
I know that it is time to move out of this place and into the next stage of life... but I find myself afraid of what is next. With Africa prayerfully on my mind as well as living in the States, I find my heart needing the reminder that I am not in charge. Am I to listen and obey- respond to Jesus' call? Absolutely. But what does He have for me next? Not so sure... This has been a good exercise of faith and trust for me. I remember feeling this way when I left Cairo during the Bread Crisis, wondering if I would ever adjust to St. Louis... and here I am, wondering if I will ever adjust to anything besides seminary!
God has been so good to me here. I have learned so much more about myself, about the brokenness in this world, and my desperate need for a Savior! When I read Temple's quote, it spoke to me in a way I needed as I reflect on the past 3 years here. I can fill my head full of all the right things to say, all the right techniques, the proper theology, and lesson plans that can help other people know Jesus- but if there is no heart change or absolute allegiance to the Story of my True Love, it is considered nothing. I can be so self-centered just like all of us can. He is my only key out of my own sin, my own destruction, and into the world around me that He alone has power over. I cannot fully fix myself. I cannot change anyone else. My heart must undergo the most intensive process ever. Sanctification is no joke- it hurts like crazy, but it gets us out of the tower and into the world we were created to be a part of! Onward we go!