“Don’t be shellfish,” I tell my kids, hoping to sound light about something so heavy.
Selfishness is THE battle, is it not? It is so multi-talented that it manages to hurt us, God, and others, all at the same time.
[box] Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Philippians 2:3[/box]
Hats off to our role model, Jesus.
[box] Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as a human being. Philippians 2:6,7[/box]
God shows us the way up is down. Growth, transformation, and productivity ~ these all spring from death.
[box] “But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live. Romans 8:13b[/box]
[box] I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat is planted in the soil and dies, it remains alone. But its death will produce many new kernels—a plentiful harvest of new lives. John 12:24[/box]
Love always involves self-sacrifice.
Sometimes we struggle to love others because we’re so busy pursuing our own comforts and interests that we have no time and energy left for God and others.
What would happen if we left holes in the garden of our day, margins of space where we could partner with God to love outside ourselves?
He’d fill our souls with selfless seeds. Water our days with surprises and opportunities where we could blossom His fragrance to others.
Jesus calls us to higher ground. When we step up for Him, He makes a way.
Selflessness pauses to look around. Like a bobbin’ robin, it tilts its head to heaven and earth, and stops to listen.
Who out there needs a dose of hope? A simple prayer?
It’s a rare day when a hurting, love-hungry person turns down a sincere, genuine offer for prayer.
What do you think?
Need to spit out any shellfish? Where do you see God working in your life?
Let us Pray
Father, you call us to be Your body extended. Sometimes we’re so consumed with our ways that we forget your highest purpose for us. To love. Forgive us and teach us to die. Help us leave spaces in our God-given gardens so you can work your green-thumb wonders. Plant in us deep eternal seeds of righteousness. We want to enrich, bless, and transform those around us. In Jesus’ name. Amen!
Dance of Comfort
Just as My arm sweeps over yours,
My strength in you, to others, pours.
My truth in you now long declares,
Your love loves stronger while it shares.
A prayer, a touch, a simple smile
Reveals My Presence every mile.
There’s always something you can do,
When prayer makes waves ahead of you.
By Cheryl Ricker, from “A Friend in the Storm.” Copyright 2010, Zondervan