Turn That Keen Gaze Inward

24 Aug

“I’m fixing me because, sometimes, I’m the problem.”  ~ Unknown

We can see it in almost all representatives of the animal species:  there appears to be a need to dominate.  Animals — and people — will go to great lengths to make sure that they are on top and in control.  Even if they are doing things the wrong way and lead others down a wrong path, they hold on to control.  It is as if they lack the capacity or insight to realize that they are heading in the wrong direction.

We need to take the keen gaze that we use when examining others and apply that to ourselves.  We need to ask ourselves whether or not we are correct.  That would mean, of course, that we also have to ask God for the humility necessary to admit our error and the grace necessary to change our ways so that we can be doing what the Lord asks of us.

Introspection can be a painful exercise.  I think that is why so many people spend their time examining the methods and motives of others.  It is easier to see the fault in others and to tell them what they are doing wrong than to look within and admit our own weaknesses and errors.

For many of us, that goes against not only our human nature; but, it goes against the way we were raised as well.  My father instilled a lot of perfectionism in us.  He was a perfectionist himself and he expected nothing but the best from us.  He would tell us that he merely wanted us to do our best.  He would tell us that, if we did our best and all we got was a “C” in a subject at school, that would be okay.  However, woe to the son that actually came home with a “C” on his report card.  There would be a browbeating awaiting, if not worse.

Therefore, if we have instilled in us the need to excel, it is hard to admit that we fall short of the mark.  Rather than admit that we are faulty in some area, we do the next best thing.  We look for the faults in others.  If we keep ourselves busy enough doing that, we do not have time to look within ourselves and label our deficits.

God wants us to do our best.  He gives us grace upon grace to get it done.  However, God also loves us unconditionally.  We have nothing to fear from our Heavenly Father.  So, if you know that you are lacking in some area in your life, ask God to give you the grace that you need to fix it.  Spend the time on yourself today so that you will be in better shape to help others.

FAITH ACTION:  Be quick to realize and admit when you are the one that needs to change and make plans to do so.