The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? Jer 17:9
Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. 1Pe 1:18-19
I have not been very active lately on this blog. My house has no electricity and I have had minimal time to work on my computer. (This computer, by the way, is a gift from Carol and Frank Lanthier, a Canadian missionary couple who have worked tirelessly for the African continent and for whom I pray that they may continue to receive a fuller and deeper revelation of the gospel of the Cross of Christ).
Today’s post is dedicated to my wife. My wife does not read this blog for the simple reason that she is not the reading type. The only book she ever reads is the Bible; and even then she never seems to memorize where any particular verse is situated. Invariably, whenever she has to preach in church, she will ask me where such and such a verse is located.
The thought occurred to me that when my wife retires from her job not long into the future, she may choose reading as one of her retirement pastimes and in the course of it all she just might be tempted to see what it was that I had been writing on my blog all these years… and I can imagine her horror and disbelief on reading all the beautiful sermons that I have been posting out to unsuspecting readers. If she comes up and says: “You hypocrite, look at all the wonderful things you’ve been writing..!” I will bring up this post and tell her, “See, I did write something about myself.”
It is in that sense that this post is dedicated to her. So, here goes…
In this post I want to make a confession about a problem that I have. The problem is one that a casual observer would hardly notice and which my close associates might vaguely be aware of. The credit for people not seeing too much of my pride goes to the working of the gospel in my life because I know for a fact that things would be radically different if it were not for the gospel.
And here let me emphasize that I have witnessed major changes in my life since I got saved. There are crucial areas in my life to which I can point and say, “I have seen the Lord change me here!” Indeed, I am full of joy and gratitude as I observe the great work that God has clearly accomplished and the many victories that I have witnessed in my life. It is also good when people can see and testify to what the Lord has done in my life. But whatever anyone may or may not have noticed is of little consolation to me because for me personally this problem is as big as Mount Everest.
The problem I am referring to is pride… deep-seated pride. There is an area (or areas) in my life I never seem to like being touched. The truth, however, is that the Cross has not got to these areas.
I come from a proud, fierce and war-like tribe. My ancestors made cattle raids against the feared Maasai tribesmen of the Serengeti plains and vice versa, and the undocumented assessment is that before those days ended the Maasai feared us more than we did them.
My tribesmen are renown throughout the diaspora for their rash, irrational behavior. When we were kids growing up, if any one of us boys crossed dad the wrong way, he unvaryingly would grab at the nearest object and smash you with it. One day my elder brother provoked dad and in his fury my dad grabbed at the nearest thing – which happened to be our baby sister; and it was at the point of hurling ‘it’ that he realized what it was that he was holding.
I often see traces of that in my character. It is not something that I am proud of.
Now, I am not writing all this to justify myself. On the contrary, I simply wish to provide a background for where I have come from.
Now, I know that my detractors, on reading this confession, will clap their hands to their ears and say things like “Mwita, don’t write such things, you are shaming the gospel!” etc; but my rejoinder is: “They stripped the Lord Jesus naked and I haven’t done even half that much.” Which in itself is less than an understatement.
It is interesting how the Bible spares no one in exposing their weaknesses and folly, and yet we seek so much to be honored in the eyes of men! I have no desire to receive the honor of any man. The fact that I have a problem with pride is one that I joyfully wish to confess before I die. I don’t want to stand one day before God and hear Him accuse me of being a hypocrite.
May I conclude by saying that I am not discouraged by this problem. I take consolation from the fact that just as the Lord has helped me in other areas of my life, He also will give me victory in this area also. The Cross of Jesus has the ability to reach into the deepest parts of our flesh and uproot our deep-seated carnal natures. Probably some take much more time to uproot than others but… the Apostle Paul confidently states that the Lord who begun a good work in us “will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ” Php 1:6.
I am a man of faith. I firmly believe that even now God is working something wonderful deep in my heart. I am assured that one day I shall wake up and find myself free. In the meantime, I can only trust God’s grace and His work in me.
This is the confession I would want my wife to read one day in the future. Hopefully, by then the working of the Cross in my heart will have perfected me in the image of Christ and I can have something to boast about before my wife – and God.