The End of Me: Where Real Life in the Upside-Down Ways of Jesus Begins is the most recent book by Kyle Idleman, teaching pastor at Southeast Christian Church in Louisville, Kentucky. In the first section, Kyle focuses on four specific beatitudes from the Sermon on the Mount that lead us down the narrow path to real life. The second section describes the great kingdom paradox- how we are in the best position to be used by God in significant ways when we get to the end of ourselves.
Jesus wants to go a little deeper, beyond the surface of life, to what’s inside us- what makes the surface the way it is. This is a question of being broken , not a question of brokenness. Pastor Idleman observes that the end of me often comes when our dreams come to an end. Yet, it is possible to wake up from a nightmare to a dream, experiencing God’s presence as never before. Because God looks at the heart as the true measure of who we are and nothing can be faked in His presence, there is no substitute for humbling ourselves before God. This is a proactive, not passive process.
Kyle states that we struggle with authenticity- it’s a risk we don’t want to take. Nevertheless, the author writes, “Jesus calls us to live one life and live it out in the open.” Jesus’ name for that is purity of heart. Our emptiness means God has us right where He wants us, for Jesus fills that emptiness with joy and abundance. It is unnecessary to settle for the full life when we can pursue the filled life. Jesus is our only hope. All we need to do is bring Him our helplessness. Jesus will meet us there at the end of ourselves.
God’s favorite time for this to happen is right now. God simply asks for our faith and obedience. Temporal pursuits will fade away. Only God’s plan and will truly matter. Contrary to limited finite thought, our “disqualifier” becomes God’s qualifier- and God doesn’t choose us without equipping us to carry out His unique mission for our life. Human weakness creates the space God fill with His strength.