A prerequisite for coming to and growing in the Lord.
“But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!” Luke 15.17
We sometimes talk about people having a “come to Jesus” moment, but I think it is not likely for that to happen until they first have a “come to myself” moment.
Lost people need to realize that they are lost. They need to see the emptiness of their lives, the vanity of their plans and schemes, and the futility of their fondest hopes. They need to realize that none of what they have worked for or accumulated can bring them to that rest of soul which they earnestly desire. They must despair of their ever knowing such rest by their own strength, and be turned in their souls to look beyond themselves for the deliverance they seek.
This entails confrontation, self-examination, and the awareness of a true home they might yet realize, if only they forsake their folly and come to the Father in repentance and faith. And what’s true for lost people is true for all believers, if we are to make consistent progress in our walk with the Lord.
This is the beauty of the book of Ecclesiastes. Helping people come to themselves is what Jesus did, and Paul. We have to care enough about the lost people God brings into our lives to lead them to this place, where they are face-to-face with the vanity of their chosen course, and led to hope in the mercy and love of God.