Alas should the Lord only leave me to myself how miserable must I be?
How soon should I fall from one iniquity to another: what then must be the case with those whom He resists, and sets himself (as the word is) in battle array against them. How ought I to guard against the remotest approaches to so dangerous and destructive temper, which like a fatal blast would nip the fairest prospects of usefulness in the very bud.
But can I then reason myself out of that pride which I find interwoven or as it were ingrained in my very nature? Can I bring myself to a lowly temper by dint of argument? Surely no.
I have long found my heart intractable to these methods. What can I do but carry it by faith and prayer to the great physician who can (and He only) cleanse, and soften and empty, etc; and then new mould it according to the form of His divine Gospel, animate it with His love, and fill it with His own Spirit.
Lord I came to learn from Thee as Thou hadst bid me, this lesson which is taught in no school but Thine. Thou wert meek and lowly, O let this mind be also in me.
Give me a humbling sense of my sins, give me a humbling view of Thy glory, give me a humbling taste of Thy love, for surely nothing humbles like these.
All my pride springs from ignorance.
Grant me to know myself, to know Thee, to know my relation to Thee, and my dependence upon Thee, my unprofitableness and insufficiency before Thee; and the extent and importance of the mercies I continually receive from Thee.
--John Newton, from his Journals