The first time was a news story about how much time and attention single parents should give to their children versus how much time they should spend focusing on themselves. The expert speaking to parents said, “It’s all about you.” He went on to explain that you couldn’t be a good parent unless you focus on yourself first.
The second time was when a gentleman in the waiting room turned to me and said, “I’m on vacation this week and I haven’t done one thing for myself. I haven’t done anything fun!”
The third was another story on the news show about divorce entitled, “Undivorced – Divorce Without the Paper Work.” The marriage “expert” in this story said that there is too much financial stress and emotional stress involved in going through the court system. So, couples who want a divorce should just decide to live separately and not divorce.
The interviewer raised an intriguing question. How does this arrangement affect children? The “expert” said, “children are great at adjusting to change, so it’s all about you!”
Is it just me, or is it reality that the “looking out for number one” approach to life is at an all time high? It seems that the phrase, “God wants me to be happy, so I should do this (just fill in the blank) for me,” has become the mantra of our day.
We hear it from parents who fail to live up to the responsibility of children they have brought into the world. We hear it from church members who seem to think everything in the life of the church should revolve around them. We even hear it from preachers who think they are the first and only Christians who have suffered “mistreatment from others.”
Aren’t you glad our Savior didn’t take that approach to His life? Paul reminds us that, “He emptied Himself” and took “the form of a bond-servant…” (Philippians 2:7) The Word of God is clear that we also should develop hearts that are more concerned about others than we are ourselves.
Think about all of the “one another” passages found in Scripture. “…Be at peace with one another.” (Mark 9:50) Jesus said over and over again that we should “love one another.” (John 13:34-35; 15:12, 17) We are to be devoted to “one another” and “give preference to one another in honor.” (Romans 12:10)
We are admonished to “build up one another” (Romans 14:19), and to “accept one another.” (Romans 15:7). We are commanded to “serve one another” through love (Galatians 5:13), and to “bear one another’s burdens” (Galatians 6:2).
We must “be kind to one another” (Ephesians 4:32), and “comfort one another” (1 Thessalonians 4:18). We should “encourage one another,” “build up one another” (1 Thessalonians 5:11), and “stimulate one another to love and good deeds” (Hebrews 10:24).
These passages from God’s Word along with numerous others remind us that even though many around us would have us believe “it’s all about us,” it really is not all about us. If we want to follow in the steps of Jesus (1 Peter 2:21; John 13), we will be more concerned about others than we are ourselves.
Dear Father, help us to learn to follow in the footsteps of Jesus. Help us to live our lives for others. Help us, Dear God, to be willing to show our love for others through the way we live every day. Help us, Lord to share Jesus with those around us. In Jesus Name, Amen.