Kanye West was once asked whether his instincts have ever got him into trouble. His response,
“It’s only led me to complete awesomeness at all times. It’s only led me to awesome truth and awesomeness. Beauty, truth, awesomeness.”
Now, you’re probably questioning the validity of this claim. At least you will be if, like me, you’re human. I mean really, Kanye, following your instincts always results in ‘complete awesomeness at all times’? I know that’s not true for me. But then maybe that’s why I’m not Kanye West.
The thing is even people who actually are generally awesome still get it wrong sometimes. Sometimes we make a decision based on our best understanding of the situation and it ends up nowhere near as well as we’d hoped. Sometimes we make choices based on our own selfish desires. And so we get what we want, but others get hurt.
I think anyone with an ounce of self-awareness would have to admit that the decisions we make do not always lead to ‘awesome truth and awesomeness.’ No, our attempts to be awesome often end up like this:
(In case you’re worrying: I’m assured the cat survived.)
And this is one of the reasons why prayer is so important. We all have to make decisions. And those decisions impact others. I’ve heard people at times refer to Christians as ‘God botheres’ – pestering Him with all our prayers and singing. But given our tendency to fail epically, maybe we should be bothering God more.
I heard the Kanye West quote during a sermon on Fruit of the Spirit. Now it’s a bit of a cliche for sermons to end with, “so read your Bible and pray more” which actually is not how the sermon ended (if you want to listen, it’s here).
But when I look at the challenges facing me in life, or consider the decisions I have to make, if I look at my own heart, and then read the description of the fruit of the Spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control – I can’t avoid the obvious conclusion that I need to pray. Not just for guidance, but also for a heart that is full of that Spirit. A Spirit that could possibly be summarised as ‘beauty, truth, awesomeness.’
So maybe I’ve been too hard on poor Kanye. Maybe he’s just full of the Fruit of the Spirit. But I doubt it.