Wednesday, June 12

Make it about others

Scripture: 1 Kings 12, 2 Chronicles 10-11, Philippians 2

Philippians 2:3–4 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

Observation

King Rehoboam is an example of doing the opposite of Philippians 2:3-4.  He models selfish ambition, vain conceit, valuing himself above others and looking to his own interests.  He consulted the elders who gave him wise advice.  He rejected their advice, sought what he wanted from his peers, and got it.  He made it all about himself—his power, his will—and lost big time.  This is the paradox: make it about yourself, and you lose; make it about others and you win.  

Application

Paul’s counsel in Philippians 2 to be selfless, humble and look out for others strikes many people as a prescription to be weak and servile—a loser.  But just the opposite is true, and Rehoboam illustrates that beautifully.  We win by losing, we gain by giving, we become bigger by becoming less.  We think that fulfillment and happiness is getting our way, making it all about us.  That never satisfies.  We find the fulfillment and happiness we seek when we drop our selfish ambition and vain conceit, and value others above ourselves and seek their interests and not just our own.  

Today, I’m with a group of old friends.  I want to seek their interests, make it about them, not me.  

Prayer:  Lord, I naturally want to make it about me, so this is counter-intuitive for me.  Help me!  Help me to be interested in others more than myself.