Look for Christ – find Him

By Dave Henning / March 7, 2024

“The principle runs through all life from top to bottom, Give up yourself, and you will find your real self.  Lose your life and you will save it. . . .  Nothing that you have not given away will really be yours.  Nothing in you that has not died will ever be raised from the dead.  Look for yourself, and you will find in the long run only hatred, loneliness, despair, rage and decay.  But look for Christ and you will find Him, and with Him everything else thrown in.”- C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

“Forgiveness flounders because I exclude the [Other] from the community of humans even as I exclude myself from the community of sinners.”- Miroslav Volf, Exclusion and Embrace

Timothy Keller concludes Chapter 7 of Making Sense of God as he underscores what the Christian Gospel offers.  The Gospel, Pastor Keller proclaims, offers us the most invincible and confident assurance of our own worth.  Yet at the same time the Gospel requires humble service and the loss of our autonomous independence.

Therefore, Pastor Keller echoes Miroslav Volf in asking what kind of selves we need to be in order to live in harmony with others.  The only ways forward, according to Volf, is the unique identity with “the Cross at the center.”

However, as Volf posits, two things happen when we exclude others.  Thus, Pastor Keller offers his summary of Volf’s thoughts:

” . . . the two constituent aspects of exclusion are, paradoxically, over binding and overseparating.  We overseparate from the Other when we fail to recognize what we have in common.  We refuse to admit that we are to a great degree like them.  But we overbind to the Other when we refuse to grant them their difference, when we insist that they really are, or should be just like us. . . .  these moves . . . both bolster our fragile self-respect.”

In conclusion, Miroslav Volf describes the cross-centered identity as possessing a “decentered center.”  In other words, a self humbled by the cost of its salvation, yet so affirmed by it that it cannot exclude others.  Nor does the self want to.

Today’s question: How did you look for Christ and, with the help of the Holy Spirit, find Him?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Great challenge to human hope”

About the author

Dave Henning

Leave a comment:

Call Now Button