My life story is full of ironies. One of them is that I very much disliked studying as a kid. Only after I encountered Christ did I begin to gain a vision of what it means to be truly human.
Inspired by Prov 1:7 and 9:10, Calvin opens his Institutes with the observation that sound wisdom has two parts: knowledge of God and knowledge of ourselves. He points out that, in order to understand ourselves, we must first know God; conversely, in order to understand what it means to know God, who is both infinite and personal, we must also know ourselves. He further observes, “Knowledge of ourselves not only arouses us to seek God but also, as it were led us by the hand to find him” (Institutes, book 1.1.1).
Knowledge of God is both an event (conversion) and a process (sanctification). It was as I learned how to read my story in the light of the grand narrative of Scripture that I saw the relevance of Scripture to all of life. I began to get excited about the process of discovery as I grappled with the basic question, what are the implications of Jesus’ proclamation of the arrival of the Kingdom?