This prayer was in my devotions today, and it struck a cord. It reminded me of all the times I’ve been unpleasant or huffy because someone was inconveniencing me, or when I referred to another driver as an idiot because they cut me off, or when I just failed in general to be kind because it was inconvenient or I was more interested in acceptance from my peers.
How many times have I fallen into actions that were against the Kingdom of God? Countless times.
It’s easier to think about my own worth, my own comfort, how to make things convenient for me, or how to reward myself. It’s easy to step on others while I make my way to the top. It’s easy to think mean thoughts, and to say them aloud to make myself feel better. But when I submit to my own selfish ways, I am at war with the Kingdom.
This was not what Jesus called me to do.
Jesus called me to deny myself and take up my cross in the name of God (Matthew 16:24), and to do all things for Him and not for mankind (including myself) (Collosians 3:23). This life is not about what is best for me, but rather, how I can help gain souls for Heaven. How can I save mankind from a life away from God? I tell you one thing, it’s not by looking out for my own best interest. It’s about showing Jesus to the world. In this, all my actions should be like His. So when unexpected work lands on my plate, or a coworker wishes to gossip about another, or someone cuts me off in traffic, I am to think first about how Jesus would handle this situation, and then act accordingly.
None of us strive to be more selfish and self-serving, and yet, that is often how we act. May we instead lose ourselves so that we can gain the world.
“Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me.” Matthew 16:24
“Work willingly at whatever you do, as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people.” Collosians 3:23
Lord, thank you for revealing ways I can please you more, and how to serve you better. You offer me grace, even in times when I am blind to the wrong I do. I am not perfect, and I have a far way to go to resemble your Son. But you love me in spite of myself, and you wish for me to do better. I will try my best. Amen.