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Finding God by taking a look at ourselves

One of the most stupendous facts of our existence is this; all of us can come to know God139047 through examining the needs of the self. And if this is realised, each and every one of us is, regarding the self, in receiving distance from the divine through the deep complexities of the mind. All the great and admirable earthly qualities that we posses, should be examined as gifts from Christ in order to be appreciated. And if we examine our cognition a little further and take the picture as a whole, we will see that coveting reveals itself to be rewarding only in the search itself, hardly ever in the attaining; for even when you attain something, there is some further search attached to that attainment which brings a more exciting anticipation than the thing itself. 
When we come to know God, we see the real picture of this unattainment; we see what it is that we are working towards. His grace is how we tackle our uncertainty, and it is because of His grace that we feel pleasure from the pursuit. Christ said 'He who is not with me is against me' - emphasising the main point of divine knowing - there is no middle ground; indifference is no excuse - it is the same as out-and-out rejection of Him. 
When our Lord says 'seek and you shall find', He means it, not as a man might say, 'Look for a girlfriend and you will probably find one' or 'Look up in the sky at night and you will see the stars'. No, when He says search, He means search through everything that you are - look deep within yourself until you find the need for surrender and then you will find Him. It is the surrender, not the pursuit of earthly righteousness that will show us our true state, for even earthly righteousness appears imperceptible when aligned with our need for Heavenly righteousness - to the point that we take issue even with earthly righteousness. 
As Christians it is time to help put an end to false reasoning, for the human mind will only find contentment in the truth when it has escaped Creative Delusion. Do not be fooled by the psychological trickery which the mind is all too ready to deploy in moments of Creative Delusion; for the whole thing is a deception. If we spend our days imagining that we are content in this state of mind, we shall be almost as dissatisfied as a man who is content in this state of mind but constantly wishes for even greater contentment. Equally, if a man continues to imagine his futile pursuance as a pathway to alternative truths which are as yet unknown, he will be as unhappy as the man who pursues nothing. 
Imagination is only real to those in whose mind it is occurring; thus neglecting the true self for an imaginary one is not going to bring you much help or human understanding. Those who are tainted by a shameful desire to be admired are not in touch with their real selves. They would happily be an inward wretch if it meant they were admired for being an outward humanitarian. They would happily be an inward fool if it meant they were admired for being an outward genius. And here we see the true state of the ungodly man; he would rather abandon the self in favour of vacuous adulation; adulation from those who cannot even see the abandonment despite the fact that it occurs in them too. As soon as we are ready to remodify our thinking concerning our own dignity and the impression we make upon others, we shall find our true self, and the need for Christ. 
God rewards us, not by living for ourselves, not even by living simply for faith, but by living for His grace. If you are a non-believer, worried by a lack of faith - do not prevaricate and sit back with worry, there is a perfect answer to your worries. Start trying to live for Christ; that is, try your hardest to find Him and you will be astonished how naturally and easily the faith comes. And if we are to successfully delineate between thriving faith and thriving conviction, we must remember that faith does not always have present all the deciding factors - thus it depends on reason; whereas conviction works in a different way - it works rapidly, surprising at every turn until reason comes in to guide it. 
Everything we have talked about in this series leads us to one fundamental truth about our existence - and it is this. The more we know of God, the happier and more content we will be. And for every one thing we do in attempting to suppress or deny this truth, there will be a thousand hints of new beginnings; a thousand intimations telling us we are wrong. Christ is the way, the truth and the life - and upon His grace our eternal destiny depends. If we are to be made holy, we are going to have to rely on some help from God; and those that doubt this do not know what being holy really is. It takes most men years to realise this (myself included), but holiness is true happiness. Go and meet earthly men in the present age and they will tell you that they are already happy, but they are being tricked by Creative Delusion; for if they were as happy as they claim, they would not need to seek so much escapism and so many transitory thrills. 
In the deepest valley of thinking, it is those who do not know God that are most afraid of Him; thus we must search for Him to end our fears of ultimate destinies. Christ died for all of us, not just for those who bother to search for Him. His grace extends much further than our indifference. It is true that self-surrender causes some discomfort in us, but we should not be perturbed by this; for the perturbation occurs not because of our new sense of salvation but because we can at once see the sin that is still in us. Our perturbation is commensurate with the amount we refuse God's grace. If we cling on with pleasure to the furthest distance from God, we will, at first, be perturbed by moving a little closer to Him. We will fail to see, straight away, the glorious nature of the divine. These things take time.
The word 'indoctrination' causes widespread opprobrium - it often makes people flinch (very often rightly so). But it is not always realised that there is a bigger and more threatening type of socio-personal indoctrination occurring among the self-worshippers; they spend their lives becoming obsessed with image, social status and human comparison. Fortunately, Christ knows what they, and we, are up against, and He is willing to help us to become more like Him. He knows how many bad and distracting things there are in the world; but He is also ready to share with us the wonderful news of Himself. As a man He bore many of the traits of men, and He emptied Himself of glory in order that we might know Him. As God, He is everything that is excellent and wonderful. As a man He lowered Himself to serve so that He could die for us, and in the process - understand all of us, both as a man and as God. 
Christianity is unique in that it says we must rely on grace for salvation. And if we are going to find Christ, we must look past our own faults, past our own abilities, even past our own faith, into the grace of our Lord Jesus. Everything else we have is filtered through grace, and a realisation of this is what makes us truly blessed and provides the biggest response from Christ in our lives. There is nothing loveable about us that does not emanate from the Christ that is in us, thus we must love not what is in us from ourselves but what is in us from Christ. 
Man's personal striving is so often limited to earthly things - it is a limit which he has imposed upon himself, due to his dismissal of supernatural things. But give him everything he thinks he wants - give him his ultimate dreams, the whole world - all the riches, the beautiful and exotic destinations, a wonderful spouse, beautiful and intelligent children, a plethora of knowledge and intelligence - and it will seem like he has the world. Except for one vital credential - he will only have a very limited part of the world. Give him everything his mind desires and he will continue to desire more; the hunger for God that is innate in him will continue to grind on his soul. The deepest parts of him will be forever visualising new beginnings; forever intimating that he was created for more than blissful earthly satisfaction. 
LHCWhat has happened in the world to make this desire for truth and for knowledge dormant? I think the answer is simple - it is the distractions of the world; the distractions that have, for some people, made the church peripheral to the world. But go to any university or science lab and you will see the deep joy that occurs with fresh discoveries. You will see that new knowledge and new revelations remain as pleasurable and fulfilling as they did in the time of, say, Plato, or Galileo, or Planck (as demonstrated by last week's activities in Switzerland, pictured above). Many of us have forgotten about enquiry; we have forgotten about the pleasures and rewards of fresh discoveries. This is, in my view, partly because we have forgotten how to enquire properly; that is, we have stopped short of a full enquiry. 
Christianity, like all truths, will be found if one is prepared to look. It works in a very similar way to a mathematical sum. If I want to find out if it is right I must try various methods, and keep pursuing despite all claims of error or alternative solutions. I can easily find out if a sum is correct - I have many methods available to me. Christianity just like mathematics is met with desperate attempts to impede the enquiry - but ultimate truth can withstand all human objection. If I conclude in my head that a sum is correct - my objector might question the validity of my thinking. Thus I can try another method - I can use a calculator. My objector might claim that the calculator must be faulty - but then I can find another calculator. I can do simpler sums to prove that the calculator is working. If he still objects I can work it out with a pencil and paper, going through each singular stage - I can have it verified by experts or books, or further experimentation. 
The point is the same with Christianity. No matter how much someone objects to Christianity, it will, if it is true, be able to show its efficacy and validity at every step. Look to the Bible and you will see the true word of God printed for every man, woman and child to proclaim the glory of God. You will see predictive prophecy, miraculous events and divine wisdom, corroborated by various dating methods, by archaeological, historical, and palaeontological studies. You will see that the wisdom instructed to man, when carefully analysed, tells the truest picture of man - affirmed by both philosophy and psychology. You will see that God's wisdom imparted to men and women of God perfectly describes the human situation, explains our deepest joys and frustrations - and that our knowing Him answers perfectly our need and desire to have a relationship with Him. Of course the Bible, as many need reminding, is not the only way that God reveals Himself; if you look carefully you will find revelation in philosophy, psychology, sociology, history, politics, anthropology, literature, all of the sciences, and many other forms of academia. But with the Bible, you will see that God perfectly explains love, charity, grace, forgiveness, patience, hope and perseverance; that is, the word of God contains the blueprint for human contentedness - it describes perfectly our earthly needs and our Heavenly needs. 
But for some, this line of enquiry is not enough. So what else is there? They are not happy with the sum, so we show them another way. If the Bible does not convince you, there are other places we can look. Ask me and I will tell you about the many supernatural visions that I have experienced, in many different ways, in many different places. I will tell you how, on one winter evening, I gave my life to Christ - experiencing at that precise moment, the Holy Spirit entering me. I will tell you about a complete change of cognisance and perception from that day forth - palpable knowledge that the Spirit is working in me, knowledge of which there were no traces before I surrendered myself. 
Perhaps that is not enough. Perhaps I am deluded. In which case, we must move on - we must find others who claim to have a relationship with Christ. The more we explore, the further we look into Christianity, the more we shall discover. We will hear stories from every single person who gave their life to Christ - we shall hear of daily prayers being answered (prayers that defy coincidence) - we shall hear about miraculous healings, about providential impartations; we shall see predictive prophecies if we look hard enough; amazing gifts of interpretation. And if we explore further, this time taking ourselves right into it, we shall experience these things first hand. 
If we go to the right places, we shall see miraculous changes of attitude and perception through salvation. We shall see lives transformed, from the most deplorable criminals to the most saintly heroes. Christ will touch those who ask for Him. Finally, if we are not convinced by the experiences of others, we can take ourselves right into the purview of the divine; that is, we can earnestly seek Him for ourselves; we can make every effort to soften our hearts - we can humble ourselves into surrender; we can decide that if Christianity really is the ultimate truth - if Christ's death and resurrection and our eternal salvation is what the story has been about all the time, then we desperately want to know, we want to be a part of it. 
Reach this stage and our Lord promises that you will know Him; no more evidence will be necessary - the ultimate proposition is in front of you. Then you will see whether you really do want to know the truth or not. If the proposition is, at the time, too much for you, pray for more faith; for is you refuse what is in front of you - you have given up thinking about reality. You will be consigned to spurious comfort zones - forever trapped between estrangement and hints of immortality. Those that say 'Christianity is not for me' - can, in truth, have no more complaints about its apparent falsity; the gate was right in front of them; it was they that turned around and walked away. But those that took the big leap, they were rewarded with true knowledge of the divine, knowledge that will give them a full life on earth and eternal blessing with our Lord after