The following is an excerpt from a Timothy Keller sermon ( ).

We all at certain times just have a lot of trouble understanding and dealing with the very deep, conflicting, confusing, powerful, sometimes warring dynamic impulses and feelings that just roll through our hearts, roll through ourselves. Sometimes we dont feel we have any power over it. We feel helpless, and we dont know how we got to feeling like that. We know theres something deeply wrong with it. We dont know what to do about it.

A man’s spirit sustains him in sickness, but a crushed spirit who can bear?’ Proverbs 18:14.

In other words, this proverb is getting at something actually the whole Bible gets at. We human beings are obsessed with the idea that our happiness is determined by our external circumstances, that our happiness is completely determined by whether our body is healthy or whether our body looks good, whether we have money, whether people are treating us right, whether things are going well out there. Thats what makes us happy, or thats what makes us unhappy.

I find it hard not to go down the same path that Keller is speaking of above. I often get caught up in how I’m being treated by the kids I’m trying to teach or what others think of me instead of relying on what God thinks of me. In the heat of the moment, when dealing with difficult people or just getting caught up in the busyness of life it is so easy to lose focus on what truly matters. Thankfully God seems to provide timely reminders (some gentle, some quite devastating) of what we truly need to focus on.

Only by lifting our eyes to God can we see past our current circumstances and know our true position in Christ. From this position we are able to respond from this foundation of love and grace that Christ provides. Easy to say, but so hard to do consistently. Mercifully God is patient and will never let us go. He faithfully walks with us again around the mountain until we get it.

Will Cole