Self-examination may not always be pleasant, but it is always necessary. The psalmist went so far as to write, “Examine me, O LORD, and try me; test my mind and my heart.” (Psalm 26:2) The psalmist knew that it was what was in his heart that mattered, but even he himself could not know what was there without intentional self-examination. As the prophet Jeremiah says, our hearts are deceitful—so we can easily fool ourselves.
"The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?"
We begin our long, slow shuffle to the cross with the determination to open our hearts. To be honest, with ourselves and with God. During Lent, we’re invited to befriend our frailty and the limitations of our own knowing. And we respond to this invitation in one of two ways: towards surrender or towards resistance.