ode to the self-aware…

One of my all-time biggest pet peeves has to be people blocking the aisle in the grocery store for no other reason than that they are totally unaware that they are blocking anything. I say that partially because grocery stores might be one of my least favorite places to spend any amount of serious time, so that when I am there I am almost always in a hurry. So blocking an aisle is a cardinal sin to me.

Of course the other day I found myself in my local Wal-mart Supercenter tryin to decide which type of oatmeal is the best oatmeal when I noticed that I was on one side of the aisle and my cart was on the other… thus blocking the entire aisle! Oh the shame of it all when I heard those words I have said myself a thousand times: “Excuse me. Can I get by? Thanks.” The person was perfectly nice but I know what they were thinking, “Why does that guy have to block the whole aisle?” The fact is I didn’t have to block it-I did because I wasn’t aware of what was going on around me and I wasn’t aware of where I was in relation to everything else.

Alot of philosophies promote the idea of self-knowledge. In fact in some that is all that matters. But in Christianity we often overlook the importance of knowing who we are as individuals. We talk about knowing Christ, knowing our neighbors, knowing the Bible, and on and on. But we talk very little about knowing ourselves. The problem is that Jesus said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, soul, and strength. And love your neighbor as yourself.” But we tend to forget that while we should do those things they don’t happen easily if we don’t know ourselves. I mean, how can you love your neighbor as yourself if you don’t know who you are.

But that begs the question, “What does it mean to ‘know’ yourself?” Well, there is a sense in which it is different for everyone, but that is only part of it. God created each of us uniquely and differently, but we are all still created by God and so to know ourselves means we need to look at who we are in relationship to him. For some there is no relationship and so there is a feeling of incompleteness. For others the relationship has begun and is progressing. And others have been in a relationship for years along with all the ups and downs that entails. The fact is that every person in the world can define themselves in this relationship with the Creator.

Whether you have never understood a relationship with our Father through Christ or you cannot remember a time where Christ has not been your Lord, this type of self-awareness is the most important type there is.

So where are you? Is somthing blocking the aisle?

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