I Was Just Thinking About – PERSONAL SIGNIFICANCE.
Living out one’s life can become very competitive. Having goals is one thing – desiring to be the most recognized, superior to others and well-connected is another. Joseph Stowell wrote: “Modern counseling and psychology focus a lot of attention on obsessive behaviors—whether it’s an obsession with food, tobacco, alcohol, pornography, drugs, or even work. But perhaps one of the most overlooked addictions is our obsession with personal significance. Think about the amount of time and energy you spend in maintaining, advancing, expanding, and protecting your sense of significance - making yourself look good, staying on top of the heap, protecting your ego, and living to be more successful than the next guy…We need to face up to the reality that the search for significance is a treacherous pursuit personally. Count the costs. Significance is often gained at the expense of our character as we are willing to lie and cut ethical corners to be viewed well by others.”
Envy and jealousy are real issues. Failure to appreciate another person who has greater skill sets is another factor. Thinking of another individual as being lesser than greater is too often chronic. For the professing or Biblical Christian, they sometimes omit, overlook, ignore or purposely forget Philippians 2:3-4, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or empty pride, but in humility consider others more important than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” Two of the negatives that stand out are “selfish ambition” and “empty pride”; whereas “humility” is either feigned or not even considered.
A discipline of life that must be pursued is set forth in I Peter 5:4-6 (NLT), “All of you, serve each other in humility, because God opposes the proud but favors the humble. So, humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor.” In Proverbs 3:34, we are reminded, “The Lord…is gracious to the humble.”
A story is told of a Pastor/Preacher who believed he had done exceptionally well as he delivered a Worship Homily. On his way home, he turned to his wife and asked: “How many great preachers are there in the world today?” She wisely responded: “One less than you’re thinking about right now!” Facebook can be an interesting place to observe some writing, opining, and thinking of Pastor/Preacher men. It seems as though some have to be always right and refuse to accept the input of others graciously. We need to remind ourselves frequently of the words in Micah 6:8 (NLT), “This is what the Lord requires of you: to do what is right, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God.”
Prayerfully – consider these things with me.