So apparently, this is the week of complete vulnerability…you’re welcome.

Do you remember that one syllable word that young children fixate on?  They learn it all of a sudden and then it sure seems like they take FOR-EVER to move past the blessed stage.  An emphatic “MINE” is the answer to everything, even when you didn’t ask!

I am going to let you in on a little not-so-secret truth…most of us might not actually move past it!  I think, we just learn to internalize our desires and push down the urgency of our selfishness.  We learn that our reactions are embarrassing and we come up with a more adult way of handling it. 

I realized, in myself, that this monster rearing its ugly head shows me that it’s still a sin I need to confess.  I often feel that I am happy to share something, “as long as I know it’s still mine.”  Or, I get frustrated when people (especially my kids) mess my things up.  Because I had them just right.  I finally cleaned the whole house.  I waited so long to have one nice thing.  I have things I share and things I don’t.  And on, and on, and on…it’s actually quite easy to justify and rationalize away our guilt over being selfish.

That makes sense right?  Now here’s the tricky part…If we were sitting together having this conversation, maybe at our favorite coffee shop, I would starting talking in a whisper about now.  You know why?  Because everything I just explained is sin!  And it is embarrassing!  Talking about it gets awkward.  We would rather not say aloud.  It’s totally fine if we’re coming alongside a friend or counseling a neighbor.  But when we dig down deep and look at our own sin, the way God does, the air gets stale real quick.

Something is about to go down right now.  At least I pray so.  Because we need it, our sin, to go all the way down to the foot of the cross.  Or we have no hope of overcoming it.

Most of us do not set out to be selfish.  It is not something that we try to determine ahead of time.  It usually stems from our desire for things and our fear of going without.  But don’t worry!  God does not declare them a sin and leave us to wallow.  He addresses them AND gives us a way out.  If we allow it, He will free our hearts with the truth of His Word. 

So.  If you find yourself tired of combatting selfishness and your heart is screaming MINE!! even when your lips are closed…let the following direction from God’s Word be a healing balm to the brokenness:

“Direct me in the path of your commands, for there I find delight. Turn my heart toward your statutes and not toward selfish gain. Turn my eyes away from worthless things; preserve my life according to your word.” Psalm 119:35-37

“Ill-gotten treasures have no lasting value, but righteousness delivers from death. The Lord does not let the righteous go hungry, but he thwarts the craving of the wicked.” Proverbs 10:2-3

 “So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Matthew 6:2-4

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.” Matthew 6:18-20

“No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money. “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” Matthew 6:24-33

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves” Philippians 2:3

“For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.” James 3:16

{Image from Google Images}





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