Friday, August 22, 2014

It’s Not About Me - By Sarah P.

It’s Not About Me
By Sarah P.

Let me ask you a personal question. Are you self-centered? Think about that for a minute.

If your answer is yes, you’re not alone! I have a huge tendency to be so caught up in my life, my ideas, my thoughts, my dreams, and my feelings that I ignore others. Honestly, that’s pretty typical of teenagers. We can bury ourselves in a cellphone, tablet, or computer screen for hours on end and not care about what anybody else is going through. Although that may be true, it certainly isn’t pleasing to God. Take a look at what the Bible says:

“Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.

Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross. Therefore, God elevated him to the place of highest honor and gave him the name above all other names, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue declare that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” –Philippians 2:3-11 (NLT)

Can it be said more clearly than that? Don’t be selfish…don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too. I may want to be selfish and self-centered, but that’s not what God says I need to be. In fact, that’s not what God is! When Jesus came down to earth, He was being humble. He could have been born an earthly king and taken over the world with everyone praising Him continuously. Instead, He obeyed God, His Father. He chose to be the Son of a virgin teenage girl named Mary. He chose to be the Man who, in His hometown of Nazareth, people called, “just a carpenter’s son,” (Matthew 13:55). Jesus could have puffed up and said, “What!? A carpenter’s son!? I’m the King of everything!” and it would have been true. That’s not what He did. He humbled Himself, walked the hard road of being a human in this sinful world, and died on a cross (which, at that time, was not only painful but also a public disgrace). Is anything more selfless and loving than that?

When you’re tempted to be self-absorbed, remember Jesus’s example of selflessness. I was recently listening to a Christian song that says, “He must increase, I must decrease. All myself I put aside.”* That’s exactly what we need to do. We need to put ourselves aside and focus on loving and obeying God.

*”It’s Not About Me,” from the musical, Joseph: From the Pit to the Palace, by Jimmy Travis and Gail Getzen.


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