Now, before we get neck deep into this unselfish lifestyle, we need to determine if it is, in fact, promoted in Scripture. Does the Bible come right up front and encourage living like this? I'll let you determine the answer.
Insight for Today
Written by Chuck Swindoll, these encouraging devotional thoughts are published seven days per week.
Yourself, yourself, yourself. We're up to here with self! Do something either for yourself or with yourself or to yourself. How very different from Jesus' model and message! He offers rather a fresh and much-needed invitation to our "me-first" generation.
You see, I learned a lot about looking out for self in school; I perfected it in the Marine Corps; and I developed ways to pull it off with real finesse in seminary, learning to be a minister. Hey, this is the profession where a guy can get away with it and hardly ever be criticized for it...even though we should!
The pattern hasn't changed, has it? Since the original scene, the history of humanity is smeared with ugly marks of selfishness. Unwilling to be authentic, we hide, we deny, we lie, we run, we escape. Anything but the whole truth!
Don't miss what that says about their eyes. They were opened. There was a sudden, shocking realization they were naked. Seems amazing to us, doesn't it? You and I couldn't be more aware of those times when we are naked. Just a half-opened zipper makes us blush.
Instead of spending all those hours pushing and promoting, we'll wind up with more time for friends and family. And the Lord will even grant you some time for yourself, plus a few extra hours to go fishing!
Maybe we should confess that one reason we find it so hard to set selfishness aside and adopt the spirit of a servant is that we're driven by dreams of success. We want to be winners.
Let's admit it; ours is an age of gross selfishness. The "me" era. And we get mighty uncomfortable even when God begins to make demands on us.
As honesty and real integrity characterize our lives, there will be no need to manipulate others. We'll come to the place where all the substitutes will turn us off once we cultivate a taste for the genuine, the real.
There's something very authentic in Paul's humility. Over and over we read similar words in his writings. I'm convinced that those who were instructed face-to-face by the man became increasingly more impressed with the living Christ and less impressed with Paul.