Lately I’ve been thinking about selfishness and not in general terms but in very specific terms- meaning my own. I used to think I was a very unselfish person, but I think back on some of my mothering and have to admit that I was. If I didn’t want to play a certain thing then I wouldn’t despite my child wanting to. Is that not selfish? Or what about the many times I went to church for how it would make me feel or to bless me and not for what I could give? Then there are numerous times I hid the chocolate so that I wouldn’t have to share.
Just last year I gave two jars of peanut butter to a friend who immediately gave one to her daughter- in front of me. I was upset, realized how stupid that was, and considered the reasons why it upset me: I wanted my friend to have enough to last a while, but she was sharing like we should. John the Baptist spoke about sharing/ being unselfish as being important. ‘If you have two coats give one…’ (Lk. 3:11) and Jesus expected much as indicated in His parables,
For I was hungry, and you gave me food; I was thirsty, and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger, and you took Me in; I was naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me. (people question- when did we do this?)
And the King shall answer and say to them, Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brothers, you have done it to Me. Mt. 25:35,36,40
(A man gets robbed and beaten. A priest and Levite walk by ignoring him.) But a certain traveling Samaritan came upon him, and seeing him, he was filled with pity. And coming near, he bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine, and set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn, and took care of him. Lk. 10:33:34
Earlier today I read something from a Christian that stated they own no possessions because everything they have was given by God and is only for use to further God’s kingdom. I can’t say that has always been my outlook but I’m starting to think that way more and more. What do possessions matter anyway if they cannot be used for good? Our houses are filled up with things that serve no purpose to the
Do not lay up treasures on earth ... But lay up treasures in Heaven for yourselves, ... For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. Mt. 6:19-21
But seek first the
and His righteousness; and
all these things shall be added to you. Mt. 6:33 kingdom
And He said to them, Watch and keep yourselves from covetousness. For a man's life is not in the abundance of the things which he possesses. Lk.
More and more I question our spending. Do our possessions further God’s cause or are we heaping treasures to ourselves for our own pleasure? We buy items (like movies) for our collections but someone out there is starving. We buy books, music, holiday decorations to enjoy but someone out there is without needed clothing. How is this stuff bringing glory to God? We play on the computer while someone is lonely in the hospital. We spend time reading but don’t visit those in prison. How is our time usage bringing glory to God? According to Scriptures- I am selfish with money and time. Ouch!
But whoever has this world's goods and sees his brother having need, and shuts up his bowels from him, how does the love of God dwell in him? My children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. And in this we shall know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him, 1Jh. -19
that they do good, that they be rich in good works, ready to share, to be generous, laying up in store for themselves a good foundation against the time to come, that they may lay hold on eternal life. 1Tm. ,19
(Jesus to a seeker) …Go, sell whatever you have and give it to the poor, and you shall have treasure in Heaven. And come, take up the cross and follow
But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing... Lk 6:35
Lord, help me change.
Help us all to change…