Friday, February 26, 2010


And all the time the joke is that the word "mine" in its fully possessive sense cannot be uttered by a human being about anything.   ~ The Screwtape Letters (Chapter 21), by C. S. Lewis~

One must be careful of the awful smallness and selfish possessiveness that can creep in with that small word "mine."

In Till We Hace Faces, it was one of Orual's deepest flaws, hidden from herself until near the end.  She thought she loved her sister Psyche.  But her "love" was a possessive hunger that wanted Psyche all to herself.  Better for her to die and still be Orual's, than for the God of the Mountain to love, woo, and steal her away.   

When I was over at the my friends' house last week, Sarah was trying to break her little girl Rebekah of the habit of saying "mine" of almost everything.  "It's not nice to say 'mine,'" she would say.  She wasn't concerned with Rebekah using it in a purely true and factual sense.  But it is clearly an inborn tendency to call things "mine" which are not ours at all (like Sarah's drink from Sonic which Rebekah tried to claim - even Sarah's jacket!).

Even when things are "ours" in some sense, they should never be clutched and clung to, but rather held with an open hand.  Even when I'm married, and I say "my husband"  - even then he will not be mine so much as Christ's.

He alone makes, redeems, and truely owns anything.  He has purchased us with His blood!  How can I claim any rights or ownership of anything?

Because God really owns all, He sometimes takes away what is "ours" (friends, family, posessions, health) to work on them, or us, or both.  He cares for His own better than we know.   

Lord, please help me learn to not say "mine" the wrong way.   Instead, help me hold out everything in my hands, look to You, and say, "Yours."

When the King calls, will you give what you cherish the most to Him?


  1. Reading this post about being "open handed" reminded me how incapable we are to be selfless.

    To truly open our hands and say "yours" we are entirely in need of God's regeneration in our hearts and minds.

    The frustrating part of this isn't that I know I need God to be humble, it's that after I do come to Him that the change doesn't last forever. It's ridiculously easy to think I "got the hang" of walking in the spirit.

    But the truth is I don't. Which in turn shows me all the more that I need God; and the cycle continues.

    Eshhh! I'm so blasted resistant to dependency.

  2. So true, Erik. "Blasted resistant to dependency" indeed. It's a daily call, and without Christ we can't do it at all!

    "O wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? I thank God — through Jesus Christ our Lord!" (Romans 7:24,25a)