I’ve got something kind of embarrassing to say, something I kind of hate to admit, but I am sharing it today in hopes that God’s truth helps me overcome this annoying habit.
Here goes: I can’t stop making everything about me.
How that person responded – is about me.
My ministry work – is about me.
Someone getting chosen above me – is about me.
My husband’s response – is about me.
My children’s behavior – is about me.
The response of another – is about me.
Can you see where this is going?
Somehow everything centers around – me, myself and I. And even when I say it doesn’t, I lie.
I don’t want to do this, but it is almost like I can’t help myself. We live in a “selfie” world.
We take pictures of ourselves in the moment and all we can think about is how we performed, how we looked and what kind of response we will get. It is almost as if our worth is dependent on “likes”. It is almost like others “comments” are vitally important in our missions.
So, I wonder, how do I really die to self instead of pretending all that matters is myself?
God says: Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you clean the outside of the cup and of the dish, but inside they are full of robbery and self-indulgence. (Mt. 23:25)
I certainly don’t want to be that dirty Pharisee, but my cup is just the same – dirty on the inside and shiny on the outside. I lure others over with my outer beauty, until they come closer to see what I have inside. Truly, no one wants to be filled by a cup that only pours out black, dirty and tainted water. There is no living water there. Dirty unclean vessels can’t love as Christ would – nor live as he would.
Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; (Phil. 2:3)
How do I get over myself to dive into God’s will?
Because I am tired of swinging on the pendulum of righteousness – either I swing too far to the left and am completely inadequate and selfish or I swing too far to the right and am completely over-righteous and prideful.
Back and forth I go.
Have you ever felt this way? When we ride this swing, we can never seem to rest in the peace of the Lord. We are always striving to be more, to do more and to give more. Both a guilty shame-filled heart and an overzealous righteous heart both have roots in the “me first” mentality.
When one falls down, the other side lifts higher. Back and forth they go.
Yet, the middle place on the pendulum, the still place, is the place of love, grace, mercy; it is a restful place.
God calls us here.
So, how do we come to this resting place of stillness, shamelessness and surrender?
The place where we are neither self-centered or self-inflated, but simply self-less?
Rather, join with me in suffering for the gospel, by the power of God. He has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was granted us in Christ Jesus from all eternity… (2 Tim. 1:8-9)
– The power of God saved us.
– The power of God called us.
– The power of God leads us in our holy calling.
– The power of God works not through our works but through his.
– The power of God works as he purposes.
– The power of God bestows grace over grace.
This is the power we walk in. Anything more or anything less than God’s power is just the endless movement of a pendulum that keeps heading in the wrong direction.
It is solely by the power of Christ that we do anything. When we work through his power, his power at work within us makes us selfless, humble and full of grace.
It reminds me of the lyrics of “Turn your Eyes Upon Jesus”:
Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.
We fade, Christ brightens.
We become selfless, he becomes radiant.
He shines, we take the back burner.
Not by the power of our own might, but only by the power of the great God we have in sight.
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28 CommentsLeave a comment
Kelly, those are powerful words! It’s like you are speaking from your heart! I felt so related to this! A lot of times I have been feeling this way. And it’s a decision, to trust and rely on God’s grace. It’s our action to recognize our weaknesses from the heart, for the power of God is manifest in our weakness. We must die, so Christ can live in us! We must die to all that, so that Christ shine on us and those who do not know can come to Him for our actions reflects Him. As the scripture says, I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. Thanks for sharing this powerful post, makes me want to read it again! Love, Tayrina
I am so glad that you enjoyed it Tayrina. Thank you for your beautiful comment. Christ is at work in us and it’s not for our purposes. Amen and amen! I loved tweeting with you today!
Appreciate your honesty friend, I can relate. I also totally get the pride vs. self-loathing thing, ugg. Admitting is the first step toward progress, right? Glad to be on this journey together as we learn to let go and lean in to grace, grace, glorious grace.
This is a beautiful post, Kelly. We’re all in the same boat, drinking out of the same dirty cups that look clean on the outside. Yes, it’s only by HIS power that we can live for Him.!
Oooh, boy, you nailed me with this one. A self-centric life – It is a struggle to catch ourselves at it and a struggle to stop doing it. And isn’t it amazing how pride and inadequacy can just about fit in the same place at the same time? Ugghh.
Fighting right there with you sister!
It is so easy to get away with and so hard to stop, because it is unseen. Let’s go and fight Angela. We are Overcomers in Christ Jesus!
This is such a beautiful post filled with wisdom for this age. Thank you for writing about the big elephant we all see and have become comfortable living with. Your words, “When we work through his power, his power at work within us makes us selfless, humble and full of grace.” provoke me. Be blessed. – Kia
Thank you Kia. We are more than enough in him. We can never disappoint. Oh, how blessed we are!
Kelly – I really enjoyed this post. How true we are all looking at ourselves! Selfie this and that. I am going to use this to talk to my kids after I pull the plank out of my own eye!
And, I love you Anna! No more selfie-ness and more self-lessness! It is so hard, but we can do all things with Christ. Praying this over you and your family. Love that you left me a comment dear friend.
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Kelly, thank you so much for this open, honest, transparent post…as we pray to glorify God every day, I pray to have Him turn my eyes away from my self-absorption, whether I’m absorbed with how wonderful I am or how miserable I am, and keep my eyes on Jesus ❤️
Thank you Beth! I am blessed by your words to me. Let’s turn our eyes to him and the joy and peace of Christ will be ours!
This is so true. God should be at the center of our daily lives and our lives should be rooted right there in the center of His Will.
Remain Blessed Kelly.
Thank you Ifeoma. God loves it when we keep our heart entirely centered on him. I pray we may do that today.
Amen. It’s so easy to focus on me, my problems, my challenges, my needs. But the older I get, the more I realize that when I focus on God and on others, I start to fade. I’d like to be a really faded lady the older I get ;).
Exactly! It’s funny how when we are younger we want to stand out and then as we grow older we realize it is about fading. Beautiful Anita!
I loved your heart felt post. I have to admit that I’m not a fan of selfie photos that seem to be cropping up everywhere. Now, how many pictures of “you” can I stand-hair messed, tongue sticking out, funny face? But I’ve been guilty of the selfie mentality myself so many times. How will this effect me? What’s in this situation for me? Need I go on?!!!??? When I finally can get my attitude to look to the cross I can put to death that selfie mindset. This life is so much bigger than me. I pray I remember that more because I’m getting so tired of those selfie pictures. Thanks so much for sharing !!!!
You bet Rebecca. I get annoyed with those selfies too, so I get you. But, you are right. We are much the same, aren’t we? I value your heart to change. Let’s die to self and put on Christ. Also, have you linked up with the #RaRalinkup here on Tuesday’s? You should join us! Monday we go nuts on Twitter encouraging other bloggers in Christ using the # #RaRalinkup.
Thank you, Kelly. I really appreciate what you have shared here. God has been working on me regarding perfectionist, selfish attitudes – through my job, which I have had for nearly six months. Yup! One of the things He has said to me in times of fear or nervousness is “Allow Me to show My grace in this.” I am also learning more and more to take one day at a time, hand-in-hand with Jesus! My co-workers have been so kind and helpful, for which I thank God! I must admit sometimes I have not been as helpful. That is changing, for sure. I am older and should be setting an example, representing my loving Savior. Praise God for His patience and perseverance with us. The power of God. . .He is within us to will and to work His own pleasure. ” [Not in your own strength] for it is God Who is all the while effectually at work in you [energizing and creating in you the power and desire], both to will and to work for His good pleasure and satisfaction and delight.” AMP
Cindy, thank you for your honesty regarding this. I can see your heart to change and to grow. The Lord is at work in you! He will delight you in his refinement.
I love this! Yes, I too swing back and forth. May we stay focused on Jesus and HIS gentle rhythm!
I know, we only need to rest in Jesus! Thanks Sarah.
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