When I am spiritually empty I get caught up with myself, and forget God. It is a strange emptiness coming either through abandoning routine times in the word and prayer or through intense activity and not having space to just BE with Him, even if I have not neglected the spiritual disciplines.
Psalm 36:1 speaks of this forgetting God:
‘An oracle is within my heart concerning the sinfulness of the wicked: There is no fear of God before his eyes.’
Without the fear of the Lord I have a cavalier attitude and overstep all sorts of boundaries – both the Lord’s and those of people where I think I can get away with it. When I take such liberties, it ends up in wickedness – manoeuvring in order to achieve my will.
V2 ‘For in his own eyes he flatters himself too much to detect or hate his own sin.’
The outcome of this lack of the fear of God is that I revert to a place of thinking I am right, and angle to control those around me for the sake of bringing about my view of righteousness, which is in fact self-righteousness.
The Lord is gracious and He points out where I have come to and encourages me back to a place of humility taking Him seriously again. I am grateful for his intervention though at first it feels like a sharp rebuke coming out of nowhere. It is needed because I am so blind I think I am doing what is right!