If you regularly read this blog, you’re probably interested in ideas—learning them, examining them, explaining them, and passing them on. This worthy passion has its own particular dangers and pitfalls (such as forgetting the bigger picture of why we do what we do or losing sight of the purpose of all gifts and talents: the service of others to the glory of God).
The ever-interesting Fred Sanders of Scriptorium Daily has a post on Edward Bickersteth (1786–1850), who compiled some “Questions for Self-Examination” for students that are worth reading and considering:
What is my great design in giving myself to study, and what is my daily view and purpose in pursuing it?
Have I entirely given up myself to our Lord Jesus Christ to serve him unreservedly and supremely?
Do I every day seek direction and blessing from God in all my studies?
In labouring after knowledge in human sciences, do I always make the service of Christ my supreme design?
Do I pursue my studies daily as one that must give account of my time and of all my advantages?
How many hours have I this day spent in study, or for the pursuit of knowledge, allowing for the great maxim, that to pray well is to study well?
Do I pursue practical divinity as well as the knowledge of doctrines and controversies?
Am I solicitous that my soul may grow in grace by every increasing degree of Christian knowledge?
Do I choose my company by their seriousness, as well as by their ingenuity and learning?
Do I take constant care to avoid all company which may be dangerous to my morals or to my studies?
Have I been in any company where I have received good myself, or done good to others?
Have I indulged myself in anything so as to put my mind out of frame for evening worship?
Have I suffered any thing to carry away my heart from God, so as to make me neglect devotion, or perform it in a slight or careless manner?
Do I watch against all evil appetites and passions, and endeavor to subdue them early, that I may learn by my own experience, and teach others by my own example?
Am I ever seeking the spiritual good of all around me?