Sunday, February 17, 2013

Working on ourselves....

Playing catchup again....

 Card #1 (top)  I will be quick to listen, slow to speak, and esteem others more highly than myself.
Scripture reference:  "Don't be selfish; don't try to impress others.  Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.  Don't look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too."  Philippians 2: 3-4

There's an old song thats says, "Oh, Lord it's hard to be humble..."  I know it's just a silly song, but it does have some truth to it.  It is tough to humble ourselves, not before God, but before other people.  It's our human nature to want to "impress others", but at what cost?  When you start trying to impress others you get into a game of "one-upmanship".  Sadly, this is all too common.  I overheard some teenagers talking one day about when they become engaged, and one you lady said, "If I don't get at least a carat solitaire I'm not going to marry him."  When has the size of an engagement ring become more important than the sentiment behind it?   Our society is quickly become selfish, thinking only of what I can get that is better than so-and-so's and make them jealous.  We have become a society that looks at possessions instead of people.  I don't know about you, but I want to be more interested in the people.  

I'm in a habit of highlighting scriptures and making notes in my Bible when something really speaks to me.   This particular passage in Philippians held some importance....I had notes in the margin.  There were words "Imitating Christ's Humility" and "Jesus came to seek and serve".  Jesus, who could have used all his infinite power to rule the world as a king instead chose to humble himself.  A man who would save the world was not too proud to wash the dirty feet of a fisherman....a very humbling gesture.  Why, then, are we so prideful of ourselves? I fall into that trap.  I'm prideful, especially toward certain ones.  I shouldn't be.  I am working on myself in this area, too.  I want to be able to be happy for  others and whatever blessings they are given.  I don't want to be jealous and boastful.

Card #2  I will forgive those who have wronged me and reconcile with those I have wronged.
Scripture reference: "Make allowance for each other's faults, and forgive anyone who offends you.  Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others."  Colossians 3:13

I have one word for this one....OUCH!  Talk about stepping on my toes!  Forgiveness is completely letting go of all the wrong things, big or petty, that others have done to you.  I have forgiven people for really, really hurtful things they did to me.  Even though the hurt and the pain of the incident is still there, the anger I felt toward them is gone.  It heals the soul to forgive.  Though I have forgiven some, there are others for whom I still harbor much anger and bitterness, and while I may say I want to forgive them a little part of me just isn't ready to let go.  I know this isn't the best thing.  I know I'm only causing myself more pain and grief by hanging on to the crap; why can't I just let it go?   Another question, why do some people forgive so much easier than others?  I've been told I forgive people too easily, but so did Jesus, and shouldn't our main goal be to be more like Him?  More work for me to do on myself.  I can't change others, but I can change myself.

Oh, and if that scripture stepped on your toes as much as it did mine, then maybe our feet are in the wrong place....

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