- We are about half way through our love attributes! Way to go everyone for taking on/praying about/writing about these attributes each week! And also kudos to you if you are reading their descriptions and my experiences and are implementing them in your home, work and play! Maybe you are praying through each attribute that comes up and have been able to write on some but not all. Whatever your amount of investment in loving others for these weeks have been, well done! I know our Father is pleased when we prioritise loving Him and loving others (mainly because we remember He says these are the 2 greatest commandments!) So, keep it up! Your work is not in vain! You WILL bear fruit for the Kingdom when you bear the fruit of His Spirit and love others!
In response to our featured love attribute, I am a tiny bit scared. For some reason it has been one I have dreaded. I probably dread it because I know God has some work to do on me in this selfishness area. I can hear myself chalking up/rationalising MY way, MY need, and MY opinion for the sake of the good of the all. But lets be honest, many time the ME monster attitude rears its ugly head and is simply for the sake of Me. Getting what I want. When I want it.
Our #7 1 Corinthians 13 “Love it up” attribute this week is: “LOVE IS NOT SELF-SEEKING”.
- Webster’s defines the word, “Self-Seeking”, for us:
- Self-serving; overly concerned with one’s own desires, needs, or interests Friends, here are some like minded words for “self-seeking”, to further expand our mission this week (In other words these are the DO NOT do’s for this week):.
self-interested, self-serving, selfish;And to follow up with some words opposite to “self-seeking” (which is what we want to be-in other words DO these this week!):
- altruistic, beneficent, benevolent, charitable, generous,greathearted, humanitarian, magnanimous, philanthropic (alsophilanthropical), self-denying, self-giving, self-sacrificing; other-directed;diffident, selfless; self-reflective
Of all the like minded words of “self-seeking”, the words, “thoughtless, inconsiderate, and self-absorbed”, were highlighted in my spirit. Questions which beg for difficult answers are, “Do I need to own up to my areas of weakness in which I can’t seem to remember people’s birthday’s? How can I work at being more thoughtful-intentional about actively remembering/recognising others’ BIG day’s rather than only my BIG day’s? In what areas of my life am I too “self absorbed” and am like a horse with those blinders on either side-only seeing tunnel vision, not able to look up and around at others’ stuff? When was the last time I shrugged off/defended my actions when I was inconsiderate to my spouse, child, or friend and didn’t apologise for it?” To be BIG enough to notice when we are small and weak is to be BIG enough to do BIG things for the Kingdom! If we want to be great in God’s Kingdom, learn to be the servant of all- “So Jesus told them again, “It’s terribly hard to get into God’s kingdom! In fact, it’s …If you want to be great, you must be the servant of all the others.” Mark 10:24-25
Of all the opposites to “self-seeking”, the word “selfless” jumped out to me. Jesus performed the ultimate selfless act of all time-He died for us when we were in the most unkept, unknowing, underrepresented, underwhelming, unpleasant state. Jesus is the epitome of selfless. He is selfless at its best.
When the time was right, the Anointed One died for all of us who were far from God, powerless, and weak. 7 Now it is rare to find someone willing to die for an upright person, although it’s possible that someone may give up his life for one who is truly good. 8 But think about this: while we were wasting our lives in sin, God revealed His powerful love to us in a tangible display—the Anointed One died for us. Romans 5:6-8 (The Voice)
As we embark on this “Week of Selflessness”, may we allow our God to prune our “overgrowth areas”. Areas of selfishness we have rationalised away, defended ourselves in, or even lived in unbenknonced to us. May we say “Come Lord Jesus come” and do a work in us. May we be open ourselves up to His Spirit revealing some ugly places in us. Only to see how He will turn our ugly into beauty. Christ like beauty.
It would do us good (and it is doing me some good even as I write this) to say the below prayer out loud. If you are willing. So find a space. Right now. And know I am speaking this right along with you, my friend (after I write it of course):
Jesus, more of You in my life. Teach me how to be a servant of all. To think of others before myself. May the “ME monster” have no reign as YOU fill me with everything I would ever need. Help me to be thoughtful in the BIG days of those around me. Remind me to give all myself-and all my self issues. self doubt. self-esteem. self insterests. self reliance. To. You. Take away my blinders so I can truly love on and SEE others. In all their pain. All their glory. All their uniqueness. All their weakness. And enter in. Deeply. With. Your. Selfless. Love.
A Quotes/Verses to say NO to the self-seeking spirit this week:
- For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.
- ““Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.”
― Oscar Wilde
- ““Self-absorption in all its forms kills empathy, let alone compassion. When we focus on ourselves, our world contracts as our problems and preoccupations loom large. But when we focus on others, our world expands. Our own problems drift to the periphery of the mind and so seem smaller, and we increase our capacity for connection – or compassionate action.”
― Daniel Goleman,
- “Almost every sinful action ever committed can be traced back to a selfish motive. It is a trait we hate in other people but justify in ourselves. ”
― Stephen Kendrick,
- “Selfishness is a bad habit. That’s why I always rationally think through my decisions to act without regard for others.”
© 2012 Standing on Peace