No less than the Apostle Paul confessed that he could not understand himself.
“For that which I do I allow (know or understand) not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I” (Romans 7:15).
“Know thyself” encouraged the philosopher. The Bible, conversely, declares that adequate self-awareness cannot be attained by our own efforts. Who are we, really? Why do we do the things we do, for both good and ill? How can we maintain the former, and overcome the latter? These are questions for which we find only the most partial of answers by our own attempts at self-discovery.
Of all the reasons to trust God, the knowledge of ourselves is one of the most important. “O Lord, Thou hast searched me and known me” declared the Psalmist (Psalm 139:1). Fewer more comforting statements exist in the pages of Scripture. There is someone who fathoms the mystery of me! Someone finds me worthy of knowing, and even more amazingly, of loving regardless of His findings! The God of Scripture possesses such insight and inclination, and He calls us to fling ourselves into His heart of grace with complete abandon.
As we trust Him, our Heavenly Father will reveal to us that which we need to know about ourselves. Doubtless, some things will disturb us, and require that we humble ourselves in honest acknowledgement and repentance. For the born again believer, however, many of God’s findings will thrill us as we discover that we are not merely ourselves. “Ye are the temple of God” (I Corinthians 3:16). Indeed, boil a Christian down to his or her essence, and that which remains is the Spirit of the Lord Jesus united to our innermost being. This our Heavenly Father sees most vividly, even as the New Testament so often affirms despite so much evidence to the contrary. He would have us join Him in such a perspective of grace whereby the light of God enables us to more consistently walk by the life of God.
Rather than introspection, we seek primarily God’s inspection. We examine ourselves by seeking the insight of the One who knows us perfectly. Thereby we think rightly about ourselves, as “In Thy light shall we see light” (Psalm 36:9). And thereby the most important thing about us, the indwelling presence of the Spirit of Christ, more and more shines forth both within and without.
“Thou, God, seest me.”