Which is more important?
Your interests…or the interests of others?
Notice how I didn’t say the interests of others are all the matter? I’m not suggesting you forget all your own interests, your own needs, wants, and desires. Far from it. You must look out for those. But when you put your own interests above those of others, you risk being conceited or a slave to your own selfish ambition. How do I know…
…I know this is true because God inspired Paul to write it. But why do you suppose God wants us to put the interests of others above our own?
You don’t have to look any further than the worlds of entertainment, sports, or politics to discover the answer to that question. You don’t even have to look further than your own family for the answer. It’s simple…
It’s easy to be selfish. I’ve done it. You’ve done it. Everyone on the planet has been selfish at some point or points in life. The reason it’s so easy to be selfish is because you know what YOU need, want, or desire. Without even asking. It’s the most natural thing in the world. Think about something you love…that isn’t good for you…and now try to put that out of your mind. Not so easy, is it? That’s because just thinking about it puts it at the front your mind. And because it’s something you love, it doesn’t take any effort to think about.
Now…think of someone special in your life. And try to think only of something they love. Ah, ah, ah…don’t let your own desires dart in. Just think of what that other person needs, wants, or desires. Got a clear, unobstructed picture of it? I’m guessing you don’t. It’s not so easy to visualize the interests of others because your own interests keep flickering through. So, maybe you give up and just don’t try. But if you do, that’s leaving out the most important ingredient…
Maybe it’s impossible for you to put other people’s interests above your own because you’re relying on your own strength to do it. If that’s the case, I have a suggestion. Read God’s words found in the epistles of Paul. Focus on those before all other parts. And as you do, ask yourself this: “Am I being selfish? Or am I looking out for the interests of others even before I do my own?
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