Sin and Selfishness

A reasonable assessment of our own selfishness is a healthy practice for each of us every now and then. I am quite sure God placed children in our lives with the primary goal of reminding us that we are not actually the most important thing in our lives after all.

As I arrive home from work, I can assure you one of the last things on my “to do” list is to go downstairs and dance with my 2 year old to the tune of Dora the Explorer’s greatest hits. However, I also know that soon enough Dora will fade into some new boy band muffled behind closed doors. Similarly, the desire to dance with dad will also fade. So I slip off the shoes and dance. At this point, I still make the cut with my 8 year old daughter as indicated on the picture below. I know soon enough that sign will say only boys…except my dad! Meanwhile, I am reminded how 99% of my decisions during the day are based in some form or fashion on my own selfishness.

Even a decision such as choosing to dance with your two year old over Sportscenter is selfish in wanting to hold onto something you know won’t last. One may be more overtly counterproductive than the other, but the reality is we tend to do what is best for ourselves in the long run.

I’ve often thought the two best barometers of our faith should be selfishness and selfrighteousness. If you are struggling in those two areas then you are likely in need of a healthy dose of a better understanding of the gospel. I know my heart seems to wander into selfishness time and time again and the ultimate result is far less fulfilling than that provided by an ounce of unselfishness.

I’ve included a few verses encouraging the kind of gospel believing unselfishness we are called to exhibit in our lives as we reflect the light of Christ to those who are seeking a better way.

“Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others”
-Philippians 2:4

“Let no one seek his own good, but the good of his neighbor”
-1 Corinthians 10:24

“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”
-Galatians 6:2

“You looked for much, and behold, it came to little. And when you brought it home, I blew it away. Why? declares the Lord of hosts. Because of my house that lies in ruins, while each of you busies himself with his own house”
-Haggai 1:9

“But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him?”
-1 John 3:17

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