If you've ever had a meringue cookie you know that it is stiffly-beaten egg whites and sugar. Once baked it puffs up into a shell full of air. When I think of the Ego I think of being puffed up and full of air....in other words with no substance. Alan Cohen defines the Ego as a "limited idea of self." This has given me a whole new way of looking at Ego as I constantly do battle with my own.
Cohen addresses this thought in his year-end message in his daily meditations book, "A Daily Dose of Sanity." He says he is often amazed at how far he's come in the previous year as he reviews his accomplishments. He's amazed because during the year he did not feel he had done so. He says the reason is because your Ego doesn't want you to think so...."It thrives on an illusory sense of being small, stuck, and powerless." You'd think the Ego would want the opposite! You'd think the Ego would want to be seen as all-powerful. Once Cohen explained, however, that the Ego is in competition with our "higher knowing"--who we really are--I understood why Ego is our limited idea of ourselves. If you think you are your Ego (small and powerless), you will not listen to your "higher knowing." Likewise, if you realize you are your "higher knowing," you won't listen to Ego. Because, after all, who needs Ego when we have God?
God created each of us and put the "ingredients" into us that would be all we would ever need. The problem is we can't access it unless our relationship to God is right. Scripture is the "recipe" book to go to for an understanding of what it means to be right with God--how to get right and stay right (see Philippians 3:9)--and the Holy Spirit is God's gift to us to help us understand and to do all that we read. One way to read the Bible is to use a daily tool such as this. You can read the whole Bible in one year using one of these methods: beginning to end; chronologically; as the books were written historically; by reading the New Testament first then the Old Testament; or by reading a passage from both the Old and New Testaments each day. You can purchase Bibles that lay it out for you in different ways, also. They often contain footnotes to enrich your understanding.
Many years ago I read the whole Bible through in a year using the chronological method. While I knew I would not retain everything I read, I did know that it was in my brain where I could access it with the Holy Spirit's help. It gave me great comfort to know that this vital information was there. If you have not read through the entire Bible, I would encourage you to make it your goal for 2014. Like Cohen, you may not feel you are accomplishing much during the year, but wait until the end of the year--you'll be amazed!
Father, may your Word light my way through each day.
Link to scripture: 2 Timothy 3:16