my minds journey

Saturday, September 16, 2006

Deny thyself and take up your cross

We talked about self care in pastoral care on thursday night.
It is an area I struggle with, I guess I have always thought that I have to work hard and therefore anything for "me" goes to the bottom of the list. Very often I don't get to the bottom of the list.

A concept that I believe is a crucial part of faith is to "deny yourself and take up your cross." This has shaped my understanding of God and my understanding of my response to God.

However, sometimes my understanding of deny self sits in tension with self care. (I hold both to be important to be my faith and my own self growth).

We talked briefly about it in class and it got me thinking, "what is self?" and "what does it really mean to deny ourself?", "Can we deny ourselves so much that their is no self and therefore nothing left?"

I will consider these questions more deeply and keep you posted. I am interested of your thoughts.

3 Comments:

  • hey there!
    Hmmm...i cant say i always put "me" things to the bottom, but maybe half way down? I dunno...

    I kind of?? understand what you say when the deny of self sits in tension of self care...I think i know what you mean...?

    I think that the last question..."can we deny ourselves so much that there is no self and therefor nothing left?" WOW...i think that is a really good, scary in a sense, but good question! I mean, can we? can we really deny ourselves TOO much? hmmm...I dunno... makes me think tho!

    Gud qtn mel, wonder what others think...?

    By Blogger Talz, at 8:36 am  

  • You know that God loves you, you are his child. He wants you and needs you to care for yourself so that you can do a good work for Him. "Take up thou cross, thy savoiur said, if thou wouldst my disciple be, deny thyself, the world forsake and humbly follow after me." They would be the words of the hymn that sprung to mind when reading your blog. Deny yourself in this context just means not to become part of the world, the old saying, we are in the world, but do not need to be of the world. We maintain our standards and morals, we hold true to that which is just...that is not saying that we deny ourselves in the sense that I think you might be thinking. Part of our response to God's love for us is to look after ourselves so that we can be the best for Him, to follow Him. So they denying part is more not getting sucked in to the ways of the world.....

    By Blogger kezza, at 8:52 pm  

  • It is good to remember that our "first" self was created in the image and likeness of God, it was the self that was complete and fulfilled... apart from this, what we know as self isn't really original. when Jesus asked that we deny ourselves, he wasn't asking us to give up our freedoms, he was pleading that we give up what the world has told us that we are (so far from our genuine selves). For those who have began carrying their crosses find that it is really not a burden we carry but a true dignity, a joyful suffering. Reading Paul, you've never really heard him complaining or forced into the missions he has done. In fact, there was an eagerness, a drive, that he seems to constantly carry. Come to think of it, those who tried to manage their own lives (self-care) are still at a loss of what self is. We have a God who's more capable of caring for us than we for ourselves.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:37 am  

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