Tag: Selfishness

Selfishness 


Selfishness can be a very subtle thing. It can manifest itself in many ways, although the one acting selfish may not realize what they’re doing.

Some ways it may appear are-

  1. The need to be seen – the center of attention
  2. Manipulation
  3. Depression, pouting, anger, mood swings, etc.
  4. Monopolizing a conversation
  5. Interrupting someone else’s conversation
  6. Overachieving

Something I witnessed about myself the other day.

At a funeral, of all places. 

Sitting in the sanctuary, waiting for the service to begin, I saw a number of fellow ministers in attendance. Sometimes, I’m ashamed to admit, I feel out of place, unknown and overlooked, and desperately in need of some kind of recognition. 

Is it wrong to want to be liked? 

No. 

But as I got out of my seat to greet a minister I knew (though not very well – I had to remind him of my name), I sensed the Holy Spirit speak to my heart about selfishness. 

In other words, my act of greeting was more about me than him. It was about being seen with a well known minister. It wasn’t about my investing anything in the other person’s life, but trying to look important by association. 

Selfishness.

Ugly, worldly, selfishness.

Oh, what can be done about such an ugly thing?

First, I needed to acknowledge it as sin, whether anyone else noticed it or not. God knew it, and now I do.

“For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.” (Romans 12:3 ESV)

Second, I must stay on guard against such desires. One of the best ways is to remind myself who God has made me, in Christ. 

I’m not inferior, or superior for that matter. I am me. I was created on purpose, for a purpose. I belong to God, and He is the Lord of my life. 

In the above scripture, sober judgment can refer to being honest with myself, God, and others. I should find out what God has done, is doing, and has promised to do in me and get busy with that.

“Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:” (2 Peter 1:1 ESV)

See, Peter wrote to people who had obtained a faith of equal standing with himself. Really? Faith as important and potentially powerful as Peter’s? Yes!

It’s something God has done for every one of us, through Christ Jesus our Lord.

Third, selfishness cannot manifest itself if I’m concerned about how to make others feel encouraged, important, and edified. If I’m not adding to a relationship, at least desiring to, then I’m probably taking from it. 

In a word? Selfishness.

I’m working on it, though I’m certain I haven’t mastered it yet. 

How about YOU? Do YOU recognize a bit of selfishness showing in YOUR life?

If so, what are you going to do about it?

It’s the little, insignificant things in our lives that determine the kind of person we are. 

A Merry Walmart Christmas 

 
Christmas Day is historically a day with many ups and downs. Gifts and guilt. Food and foolish behavior. Disappointments and disgusting manners. Family members and frozen receptions.

That’s why I’m suggesting something which may help you make it through the day. 

You see, people have Christmas blues, or grays if you prefer, mainly because of unmet expectations. So…

Ta-da! Here’s an idea for something different this year. A little variation of the normal Christmas routine.

Why not have yourself a merry Walmart Christmas? 

Go to your local Walmart and spend your Christmas shopping money on yourself! So what if your loved ones don’t get anything! Who cares what people may think of you!

As long as you get what you want!

Sure, it’s better to give than receive. But what about wanting something so much, only to be heartbroken after December 25th?

You can still celebrate Christmas with the family. After all, they don’t need all those presents. Christmas isn’t about presents; right? They shouldn’t be so materialistic.

As long as YOU get what you’ve been wanting. 

Celebrate with your loved ones while enjoying a wonderful holiday meal. You know, ham, turkey, sweet potatoes, pies, and lots of whipped cream. 

Don’t like all that stuff? Or maybe your family doesn’t fix the food you enjoy? Easy-peasy!

A merry Walmart Christmas will fix everything. 

Take the money you planned to spend on others and buy yourself a roasted chicken or something. Stop by the deli and pick out some delicious sides; like mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, and coleslaw. 

Before you check out, swing by the bakery for your very own pumpkin pie (don’t forget the Cool Whip).

I’m telling you, you’ll never go back to the old way of doing Christmas again. 

Not when you’re guaranteed satisfaction with both the gifts and the meals. 

Hey, there’s always time to sing the carols, see the lights, and smooch under the mistletoe. And so what if those things are disappointing? 

Big deal!

But when it comes to the BEST part of Christmas, one can’t afford to be unhappy. After all, it’s another year, 365 long days, until the next Christmas! 

No, you’ve got to be ahead of the game. You need to plan yourself a merry Walmart Christmas now!

So what if others think you’re stingy and only care about yourself. 

They just don’t understand the true meaning of Christmas. 

Pursuing Happiness?

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If happiness is your aim, you can end up at a place called Ruin.

If I’ve heard it once, I’ve heard it a thousand times, “God wants me to be happy.”

Really? Since when? And where is that scripture found in the Bible?

I’ll admit the word “happy” is mentioned approximately 25 times in the KJV of the Bible. But it’s never mentioned as something to be pursued.

Not even one time.

True, scripture says things like, “Happy is the one whose God is the Lord”, “Happy is the one who finds wisdom”, “Happy is the person who has mercy on the poor”, and “Happy is the one who endures persecution for the gospel’s sake”. 

Jesus told His disciples, “If you know these things, happy are you if you do them.”

Happiness is the RESULT of godly pursuits, not a thing to be pursued.

While I’m a patriotic kind of dude, and love our country’s Declaration of Independence, I have to take issue with the phrase, “…they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness…”. I agree with the right to life and liberty, but not the right to pursue happiness.

If we seek happiness, we’ll probably settle for something far less than what God has for us. Why? Because we aren’t as smart as God, and we don’t see the complete picture like He does.

Have you ever thought, “If I only had this or that, I’d be happy.”? I have.

Marriages are attacked by the “spirit” of happiness. Along with that comes a spirit of comparison. 

We all know how it works. “What I have isn’t as good as what I see over there, so if I have that (no matter what I have to do to get it) I’ll be happy. And since God wants me to be happy…”

I’ve talked with guys who have left their wives for other women because they’re convinced “God wants me to be happy.”

Sometimes people change jobs because they aren’t happy. It doesn’t matter if God is telling them to stay, waiting just a little longer for His hand to be revealed.

Other folks change churches because they aren’t happy with the pastor or leadership. “I’m just not being fed…”

More than likely, they’re not getting their own way. That’s why they aren’t happy.

Happiness IS one of the characteristics of the God loving, God following, God honoring person. They have something deep within, that regardless of how their world is treating them, they can still say “It is well”. And God calls them happy.

Happiness. A joy unspeakable that’s full of the glory of God. 

However, it’s the result of a life well lived, not life’s aim.

“…Happy are the people whose God is the LORD!” (Psalm 144:15 NKJV)

Porn Is NOT Your Friend

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Porn is NOT your friend.

Besides tainting one’s opinion of male/female relationships, promoting unhealthy and sometimes painful sex acts, and encouraging promiscuous behavior, sexual immorality reduces the sex addict to nothing more than a morally weak, out-of-control slave.

A slave to whatever desire pushes from within. It matters not that they may be caught. When the trigger is sprung, it’s time for action.

Action that is rooted in sexual addiction, the inordinate desire for self-pleasure, with or without a partner, will ultimately destroy the very life of a person: spirit, soul, and body.

“Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body.” (1 Corinthians 6:18 ESV)

It’s time to use what strength you have left, flee the scene of the addiction, and run into the arms of the One who can deliver you from yourself.

Jesus.

And if you need help finding Him, please let me know. I know His phone number.

JER-3303

“Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known.” (Jeremiah 33:3 ESV)

Sexual Sin

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Sexual sin isn’t a new thing or an isolated incident that happens just now and then. It isn’t only a teen problem or an adult sin. It doesn’t automatically occur with one gender more than the other.

Sin? What’s that? Sin is an offense against God, His statutes and laws. In short, it’s doing the wrong thing. An offense against somebody is an offense against God. Living solely for one’s selfish pleasure, regardless of its effect on themselves or others, is an offense against God.

It is sin.

Sexual sin is no respecter of people’s upbringing, faith, lack of faith, social status, color, or even political ideology. It isn’t a liberal or conservative issue.

The Important One

20130711-222734.jpgOnce upon a time there lived a guy who just knew he was something special. After all, he had gifts and abilities far beyond those of his friends, acquaintances, and even his enemies.

With one exception. But that really didn’t matter, as long as all the others knew how important he was.

Important. Yes, that’s what he was. Important! The way he figured it, there wasn’t anyone more important. All focus should be towards him. All conversation should be about him and his worth; his importance. In fact, the whole universe should revolve around him, because in his mind, it already did.

Little by little his self-importance grew, like a weed in a bed of flowers. He could no longer concentrate on using his gifts and abilities as they were designed; he began using them to showcase his position, his power, and of course, his importance. The team concept he’d been part of for years gave way to a “I’m doing things my way, now” kind of attitude.

There were some associates of his who thought he was an egotistical nut! They began to separate themselves from his maniacal manners and his constant bragging. Just to listen to him one would have thought he was the creator and sustainer of Heaven and Earth! No, they just couldn’t take him any longer. They’d had enough.

Yet there were others who agreed, at least outwardly, with the guy. He was great, very important, and should be listened to. His plans should be implemented, not tossed aside. Sure, he’s full of himself. But aren’t all great people? Yes, it’s true, he loved himself more than anything or anyone else. But you’ve got to look out for number one! So while the majority of his friends and associates walked away leaving him to bask in his own selfish glory, there were some who began to champion his cause.

The cause? Make everyone agree with the important one’s worth! To honor him, even exalt him as the one worthy of all worth-ship. The mightiest of all! The most beautiful, most gifted and anointed one.

However, there was the One exception, the One who really was greater than any other. He brought the important one into His office and asked him about the rumors He’d heard. The important one just looked at Him, placed his hands on his hips, curled his lip and said with a smirk, “Old man, your time is up. You’ve lost a step or two and can’t keep up. I’ve been running things for a long time, and have all authority and power. Everything but your chair! Well, now I’m taking that! I will do what you do, only better. I will say what you say, think what you think, create what you create; all you can do I will do, only better, faster, wiser. And I alone will be the important one. I will be above all!”

Well, as you may remember, that little “coup d’etat” failed before it ever got started. It takes more than being convinced of your own self-importance to actually sit in the seat of The Most Important One. But though the rebellion failed, the spirit of the “important one” is running rampant throughout this world. Maybe it’s even affected you.

Everyone will either live to sell their “importance” to all who will listen, or they will humble themselves under the hand of the Most Important One. Those who are convinced they have no reason to “bend their knee” to anyone, will someday experience that very thing. “For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” (Luke 14:11 NLT)

It is an amazing thing to think about; the way to have true importance is to yield one’s life to the One Who is truly God! The One Who calls, equips, and anoints. The One Who really makes you “special.”

“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.” (James 4:10 NLT)

What will you do?

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