John 3:30 (KJV) – He must increase, but I must decrease.
Our great heroes of the faith lived through some kind of desert experience—an emptying place. The devil is ok with us leaving Egypt as long as we bring all of Egypt’s values and systems with us. He lets us be a Christian as long as we live like everyone else, full of ourselves. Philippians 2 tells us that Jesus emptied Himself in order to embrace His calling to save the world. “This emptying seems to be the only way we can avoid allowing ego, power, and success to dictate our lives and actions…in the desert, as we embrace the emptying process, we give God time and space to show us the things in us that are in the way.” The process is deeply disorienting. We think we need new strategies, new skills; but God’s process “invites us into a losing before a gaining” (Strickland, The Ultimate Exodus). Have you experienced this? In what ways?