“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.” `~Philippians 2:3-5 (NLT)
I got this saying that I swiped from a song written by Alice Cooper sometime back in the 80’s. The title of the song is “You’re a Movie” and line goes like this… “Move aside mere drop of water, let the ocean pass.” I say it (kinda sarcastically…kinda) when I run into someone who is so full of attitude you can smell it coming and you need to get outta their way quickly. I think it while I hear them speak and, at times, have been accused of this same attitude myself (absurd I tell you, completely and utterly absurd). It is a terrible attitude to have and takes a lot of grace for others to handle it and it takes a lot of mercy by God to be stripped of it. It is the attitude of Conceit.
Now before I go any further let me say this out loud because I need to hear it as well…CONCEIT HAS NO KINGDOM VALUE AT ALL!!! Okay with that outta the way onward with this Freedom Fighter.
Almost 2,000 years ago our world witnessed the greatest act of unselfishness ever done and many missed its lesson. But for 3+ years prior to that event Jesus went around preaching to all those around Him that the Kingdom of God was at hand. Only those with ears heard that message and even in our present day that hasn’t changed much. Sad…but true. Secularland has a way of selling the “It’s all about me” theology while unselfishness and Christlikeness are being removed from the book shelf. Again, sad but true. But for those of us who strive for the goal that calls us heaven bound we have encouragement from the Apostle Paul.
The second chapter of Philippians starts off like this, “Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.” (Phil 2:1-2) And that one mind isn’t the universal one, it’s the mind of Christ. The mindset that say’s “I will put myself aside for the sake of others.” We need to remember that Jesus Christ, though The Son, is still God. And if God was able to say to His three parts, “We’re gonna make atonement for their sins because they know not what they do.” (that’s implied…don’t stone me) then we shouldn’t dismiss that kind of unity amongst ourselves.
In his book, “Laugh Again” Charles Swindoll makes this statement, “As Christians, when we pursue the goal of exalting Christ and putting others before ourselves, we
tend to forget all the self-serving, petty differences that normally separate us.” I like how he puts it but how is it accomplished? Well Paul gives us these three practical tips.
1. Never let selfishness or conceit be your motive.
2. Regard others as more important than yourself.
3. Don’t limit your attention to your own personal interests—include others.
And remember, this isn’t self-hate advice but rather self-forgetfulness. Love yourself as you are to love others. Hard stuff ain’t it?
But keep this in mind, “Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:14-16)
So for all you who feel like “mere drops of water” remember what is key today… CONCEIT HAS NO KINGDOM VALUE AT ALL!!! But unity does and through the reconciliation of what was done for us on The Cross we can gather ourselves together and become an ocean that envelops the communities around us for the sake of Jesus Christ. It ain’t gonna get any better out there in Secularland but we called to give water to those who thirst. Let’s give them an ocean wave of it. Amen?
Written by Chris Hughes: Chris, a graduate of The Colony of Mercy (11-2003) is married with two adult children and serves on the Deacon Board at Trinity Alliance Church in Cologne NJ
Daily Quote: “The great question facing us today, this moment, is whether or not we will voluntarily humble ourselves before the Lord Jesus or wait until we’re forced to do so. If we act now, we will be saved. If we refuse to confess Jesus Christ as Lord while we’re on the earth, we will surely concede it one day under the earth. But by then it will be too late for that declaration to change our eternal destiny” —Charles Swindoll
This Week’s Verse to Memorize:
11 He will feed His flock like a shepherd;
He will gather the lambs with His arm,
And carry them in His bosom,
And gently lead those who are with young. ~Isaiah 40:11