As I mentioned in my last post, after I had dragged myself to church, I really did learn something from the pastor’s message: “It’s not about me.” Well, this is nothing new, I’ve heard that before, I knew that, but this time, I realized why it’s easy to think it is about me–why life is about me. I mean, after all, aren’t we taught that life is about us, about getting what we want, what we think we deserve, need?
Even before we are born, life begins to center around us. If we are born into a middle class family or above in the United States of America, our parents begin to prepare for our arrival. We most likely have a little room to ourselves all decorated in a theme; crib sheet sets, blankets, pictures on the wall, clothing, toys, and supplies are laid in at great expense for The Big Day. Mothers become nesters and want to make things perfect for baby’s arrival. Baby showers are given, and life centers around the impending birth.
We make our entrance into the world, and we are ooohed and ahhhed over, dressed up, bows in the hair, passed from person to person, fawned over, held, rocked, cuddled, fed, every need met. This continues through life; we’re told we’re cute, praised for doing things that we should be doing anyway, coddled, spoiled, driven here and there… Disney Land, vacations, the mall, sports activities, dance lessons, the latest tech toy. We become teenagers, we hang out with other self-centered people who think they should have everything right now! Now we need the perfect car, or the perfect clothes, the perfect phone. Enter adult-hood and we deserve the best and nicest house, a great car, new furniture, vacations, toys, entertainment… me, me, me. Why shouldn’t we think it’s all about us? We’ve been brought up to believe it, the media tells us it’s all about us–the best beer, the sleekest car, a big ‘ol honkin’ diamond ring that weighs down your hand. We look around and see the evidence in the things we own and spend our time and thoughts on, that it’s all about us. And our “God”–our money, says it’s all about us. Was it God’s intention when He created me that I be as comfy and as entertained as possible? I often think so! We look inward at ourselves, and not outward towards others. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them. Ephesians 2:10 (Take note: I am not claiming we are saved by works, but if we are saved, we will want to do good works.)
But God says, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Luke 12:34. I’ve found it real easy to find treasure elsewhere… my treasure might be in spending hours on the computer, or thinking about how I’d like to decorate a room, or some sort of creative pursuit, just for my enjoyment. Thankfully, I do realize that these diversions are not important, but my thoughts do easily stray towards them and it’s easy to get lost in them and ignore more important things. “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal…” Matthew 6:19-20.
It’s not all about me, it’s all about others. Life is about helping and doing for others, showing them the Face of Christ… “The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.” Matthew 25:40. Take someone a meal, you’ve fed Christ. Send a card to a lonely person, you’ve sent a card to Christ. Comfort a hurting friend, you’ve comforted Christ. Shovel an elderly person’s sidewalk, you’ve shoveled Christ’s sidewalk. Stand up for the un-born, you’ve stood up for Christ. Defend a child who is being abused, you’ve defended Christ. Take home-grown flowers to a person who has suffered a death in the family, you’ve taken flowers to Christ. Share some extras with someone in need, you’ve shared with Christ. You get the picture. It’s about Christ. It’s not too difficult to build up treasures in heaven, just as long as we remember who it’s all about.