There is truth and simplicity to this quote:
“We need quiet time to examine our lives openly and honestly.” ~Susan Taylor
Without time to honestly access our hearts before the Lord, we can easily go through life unhinged and untethered to the very Life that sustains us. Living a life of introspection is important, and necessary. The contemplative life is necessary to understand God’s truths as they relate to our own personal lives. This can truly only be done in quiet spaces and open time as we can get it.
Proverbs 3: 5-6 says:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and he will direct your paths.
There is a fine line in living in our introspection and examination of our lives without actually making those thoughts the gospel. All thoughts and examination should be brought to light within the truth of the gospel.
Unfortunately, our modern life on the internet has contributed to bad habits regarding introspection and contemplative living. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Facebook live, YouTube, etc, ad nauseum force us to look at ourselves and sometimes reach deep from within in not so healthy ways. Do we have to be thoughtful or contemplative for the sole purpose of digital approval? Things to think about.
Henri Nouwen reminds us:
We are not our own deepest feelings…
We live humbly in the scheme of things. Too much introspection causes us to be laser-focused on our minimal, minuscule role in the world and in God’s purposes. Building our platform can raise ourselves to a level higher than what is intended. Living life online perpetuates that myth.
We need to release our hold on a specific identity. In some ways, it is freeing to see that our identity that is created by our thoughts and introspection does not define us. What does the Bible say about us? We know we are not what we acquire and accomplish as much as what we have received.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:9
Living a life contemplatively in the light of His Word is a skill that takes effort as well as release. Release of who or what we identify with. Cultivating a life online can fool us into thinking we are our own thoughts or what we do, or our achievements or how well we express all of that. Rather, we are only whom God made us to be in His infinite love. And that is worth contemplating.