A sober estimate - Hope 103.2

A sober estimate

By David ReayMonday 10 Jul 2017LifeWords DevotionalsFaithReading Time: 0 minutes


Read Romans 12:3

3 As your spiritual teacher I give this piece of advice to each one of you. Don’t cherish exaggerated ideas of yourself or your importance, but try to have a sane estimate of your capabilities by the light of the faith that God has given to you all. (JBP)

We live in an age where children growing up are often told how special they are and how they can achieve anything they choose. We are told to trust ourselves, believe in ourselves. And we are faced with chronic psychological problems as we discover as we grow up that we live in a real world where we encounter limits and where we discover that not everyone else sees us as little princes or princesses.

Of course it is good to encourage children to value themselves. Perish the thought that we would ever demolish their sense of worth or crush them with our disapproval. The antidote to pride is not self-hatred or misery. It is having a sober estimate of who we are and what we are. And as our text reminds us, this arises out of our faith. Not the personal measure of faith we have, but the Christian faith itself.

This Christian faith reminds us we have fallen far short of God’s standards. It tells us we are not the centre of the universe. It explains why so much has gone wrong with the human race. And yet it also reminds us we are God’s much loved and valued creation. We matter to him. And it explains why the human race is capable of so much good: after all, humans are made in God’s image and likeness.

The cross of Jesus sums this up. Jesus’ death is a reminder that we had gone badly astray from the Maker’s design for us. And Jesus’ death is also a reminder that our Maker figured we were worth bringing back home.

David Reay