I've been spending quite a bit of my quite/reflection time lately pondering my sin nature. Why, as Paul states, I often find myself doing those things I don't want to do and unable to do those things I want to do. How is it that the ugly side of me seems to always come out naturally despite some of my best efforts otherwise?
I have lots of ugly parts, but it may be that the ugliest part of me is my self-absorption. I like being me. In fact I LOVE being me, and the rest of the world should like me as much as I do and behave accordingly! I'm painfully aware of my situation and have been taking strides to allow God to do some heart surgery.
While some people may write off 'little sins' or small incidents as nothing to worry about, I somehow get bothered by those the most. I have pretty much figured out how not to let my self- absorption manifest in big ways. But the little ways are just as ugly and the remind me that my sin nature isn't going away any time soon.
A dumb example that reminded me of this just this morning:
The fires in our area of been pretty intense for the past couple of days. Several of our friends have been evacuated, our church has been set up as a fire-relief station and as a staging area for fire fighters. Last night when I turned onto my street the flames were very visible in the not-too-distance. Ashes were falling from the sky and my kids were anxious.
I spent about 30 minutes this morning watching the news and praying for the whole situation.
Then I headed out to my favorite 'hole in the wall' coffee shop to do some writing and lesson prep. When I walked to the door, I was greeted by a little note saying that due to the fires and smoke the coffee shop would be closed for a few days. I WAS TICKED! Why in the heck would a little smoke cause them to close? Don't they know how badly I wanted to tuck away and work? Now I have to be inconvenienced by heading to Starbucks who, by the way, would never think of closing it's doors! Ugly me. Stupid me. Selfish me.
It's the little things, our first responses to simple situations that often reveal the ugliest parts of our self.