Men are mirrors or “carriers” of Christ to other men.
But we must always recognise who the real Giver is. If we don’t rely on God with all our heart we are bound to rely on human beings and that is going to ultimately let us down. The best of them will make mistakes. We must be thankful to all the people who have helped us, we must honour them and love them. But never ever pin our whole faith on any human being: not if he she is the best and wisest in the whole world. (pg. 191)
Thus says the LORD: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the LORD. He is like a shrub in the desert, and shall not see any good come. He shall dwell in the parched places of the wilderness, in an uninhabited salt land. Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose trust is the LORD.”- Jeremiah 17:5-7
Christ is not only a good man who died two thousand years ago, He is a living man, still a much a man as you and still as much God as He was when He created the world, really coming and interfering with your very self; killing the old natural self in us and replacing it with the kind of self He has. By understanding this process we begin to notice, besides our sinful acts, our sinfulness; begin to be alarmed not only about what we do, but about what we are. (pg. 191)
This may sound rather difficult, so I will try to make it clear from my own case. When I come to my evening prayers and try to reckon up the sins of the day, nine times out of ten the most obvious one is some sin against charity (attitude toward others); I have sulked or snapped or sneered or snubbed or stormed at someone. And the excuse that immediately springs to my mind is that the provocation was so sudden and unexpected; I was caught off my guard, I had not time to collect myself – they would obviously be worse if they had been deliberate and premeditated.- On the other hand, surely what a man does when he is taken off his guard is the best evidence of what sort of a man he is? Surely what pops out before the man has time to put on a disguise is the truth? (pg. 192)
I can to some extent control my acts: I have no direct control over my temperament. And if what we are matters even more than what we do – if what we do matters chiefly as evidence of what we are – then it follows that the change which I most need to undergo is a change that my own direct, voluntary efforts cannot bring about. (pg. 193)
And that applies to my good actions too. How many of them were done for the right motive? How many for fear of public opinion, or a desire to show off? How many from a sort of obstinacy or sense of superiority? But I cannot, by direct effort, give myself new motives. After the first few steps in the Christian life we realise that everything which really needs to be done in our souls can be done only by God. (pg. 193)
“Trust Him when dark doubts assail thee,
Trust Him when thy strength is small,
Trust Him when to simply trust Him
Seems the hardest thing of all.
Trust Him, He is ever faithful,
Trust Him, for His will is best,
Trust Him, for the heart of Jesus
Is the only place of rest” – Anonymous