Hello everyone and welcome to episode 55 where today we talk about the solution to the most dreaded relational virus that has plagued human beings since we first walked this earth.
- Episode 54 last week was about a newspaper article where the writer talked about “‘ME-ism’ as a serious problem spreading across the land.” Namely people too absorbed in their own life to inquire into the life of another.
- The bible, in Romans 12: 2 calls this problem , “The behavior, customs, and pattern of this world.”
- This problem has been with us a very long time.
- The newspaper article highlighted the problem in the context of how poorly we listen to each other, and our lack of curiosity about what other people are thinking, feeling, and experiencing.
- We also see self-centeredness in the many manifestations of pride and conflict in every day life
- We see it so easily in others, yet it’s so difficult to recognize selfishness in ourselves
- My friend Morrie described it recently as “we are spring-loaded to focus only on our self.”
- Imagine what would happen if we could rid the world of self-centeredness, just think what it could do for marriages, for conflict at work, for bullying on the playground at school.
- Imagine if all our relationships were completely void of selfishness?
- Wouldn’t it be great if there was a vaccine for self-centeredness like there is for polio, and like we wish we had at the present moment for the Coronavirus virus spreading across the globe?
- This episode is first airing in the middle of Lent in 2020. If there was ever something we could give up right now to draw us closer to God, leading up to Easter, it would be our self-centeredness.
- But we all know this is easier said than done
- Fortunately, for people of faith there is answer to “ME-ism” that is not as hard to come by as one might think.
- I can tell you the answer is not found in trying harder
- It’s not about getting other people to change
- Rather, St. Paul gives us the answer in the same verse in Romans 12 that identifies our problem when he says,
“Let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.” Romans 12:2
- What a profound solution to the problem of selfishness!
- It’s not something we can do on our own. It requires God to do the transforming, not anything we can conjure up on our own.
- God does the work; not us.
- What a freeing thing it is to have God change us, by changing how we think.
- What a load off our backs!
If you forget everything else, here’s the one thing I hope you remember from today’s episode.
We are born self-centered. It’s hard-wired into the fabric of our being, but we don’t have to remain that way. We can change by calling upon God to cure us of this relational disease by asking him to transform us into a new person by changing the way we think.
Here’s what you can do in response to today’s show
- To eradicate the disease of self centeredness in our life, we have to first want to be healed of this malady. If our “want” is not quite there yet, but we desire it to be, all we have to do is ask God to give us the right motive.
- Ask the Lord to do the work of changing our heart, as Paul writes in Philippians 2: 13,
“For God is working in you, giving you the desire power to do what pleases him.”
- This is the spiritual vaccine we need to protect us from the virus of our own self-centeredness.
- The Holy Spirit will help us monitor ourselves and change our thinking – and the behavior that flows out it, that is more aligned with God’s plan for us.
As always, another thing you could do is tell me and your fellow listeners what resonated with you about today’s episode. You can share your thoughts in the “Leave a Reply” box at the bottom of the show notes. Or you can send them to me in an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
I hope your thinking was stimulated by today’s show, to both reflect and to act. So that you will find the joy God intends for you in your various relationships. Because after all, You Were Made for This.
Now for Our Relationship Quote of the Week
Dance like no one is watching, because they’re not. They’re all checking their cell phones.
~ Birthday card from a friend
That’s all for today. See you next week. Bye for now.
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