The scriptures consistently expose people as both thirsty and foolish. We long for satisfaction we were built to enjoy, but we all move away from God to find it. An inside look, then, can be expected to uncover two elements imbedded deeply in our heart: (1) thirst or deep longings for what we do not have; and (2) stubborn independence reflected in wrong strategies for finding the life we desire.
It is with an understanding of these two fundamental elements that we can productively explore beneath the surface of our everyday problems. The first element, deep longings, reflects our humanness and all the dignity accorded to us as bearers of God’s image. We long for a quality of relationship and meaning that no other creature has the capacity to enjoy. We were designed to richly enjoy the person of God as well as His provisions.
The second element, wrong decisions, exists because we are sinful. Only foolish, rebellious, proud people would move away from the Source of life in search of a fulfillment they can control. And that is exactly what we’ve done — and do. Spouses demand certain responses from one another as a condition for life. People require that they never hurt again the way they once did in some previous trauma. We devise strategies designed to keep us warmly involved with each other at a safe distance. We live to gain life from others and to protect ourselves from whatever we think is life-threatening.
An inside look must anticipate uncovering deep, unsatisfied longings that bear testimony to our dignity, as well as foolish and ineffective strategies for keeping ourselves out of pain that reflect our depravity. Each of us is a glorious ruin. And the further we look into our heart, the more clearly we can see the wonder of our ability to enjoy relationship alongside the tragedy of our determination to arrange for our own protection from hurt….
No amount of looking inside will yield perfect certainty about what to do. But some understanding of what is going on within us will often help us see what changes must occur on the inside before effective change can be expected.
~Dr. Larry Crabb, Real Change is Possible if You’re Willing to Start from the Inside Out
What do you think?