Devotions

Selfish or Selfless?

Philippians 2:3 (NIV):  “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves”

It really seems like the world around me encourages me to be selfish. If I don’t take care of myself, no one else will. I look back on my military career and realize that when it came to evaluations, I was often encouraged to submit my own input for my evaluation to my supervisor. It would serve me well to build myself up and focus on me and what I had done.

The world, television, media, movies… they all basically encourage Americans to focus on “numero uno.” “If it feels good, do it” is the mantra. Even when it comes to elections, I find myself doing some assessment on what each candidate will do for me. Wow. Selfishness is pervasive not only in our society, but in my life.

In contrast to the world, Jesus led the way, demonstrating selflessness by dying on the cross for my sins. Truly, the sacrificial love of Christ is now my model. Paul reinforces the love of Jesus in the above verse. Instead of a self-centered focus, I now am encouraged to value others above myself. I remember an acronym from my Junior High School years. I wanted to have JOY! You can have JOY by putting Jesus first, then Others, and then Yourself. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I confess that I am so selfish. Please forgive me. May I embrace loving others the way that You, through Jesus, have loved me.

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