Last week, I started a series on selfishness. This week, we’ll look at how we can confront selfishness.
Change Your Perspective…
I just read a really good post about hyperreality–something which is plaguing our culture and killing the faith of many. Hyperreality means that we can have things that are better than the real thing. For example, pick up any grocery store check out aisle magazine that isn’t a tabloid. They always have killer photos of celebrities with perfect skin, perfect bodies, and perfect clothes. The reality is that there’s more Photoshop in those photos than reality–they’ve been airbrushed, cropped, and corrected in dozens of ways. And so many women wonder why they can’t look like that. The truth is, the celebrities probably wonder why they can’t look like that! Our hyperreal culture feeds our consumerism, which bleeds into every aspect of life, including church. The result–we’ve become selfish, and we’re selfish for things that are a bit beyond reality.
We need to change our perspective. We need a shift in our worldview.
Look at what the Bible says in 1 John 2:15-17,
Do not love the world, nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. And the world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God abides forever.
Why are we selfish? Because we can’t see past the nose on our faces. We don’t look down the road further than what we’re going to eat at our next meal, or the vacation that’s coming in a few weeks or months. We’ve fallen in love with the temporary; we’ve lost sight of the eternal.
Think about it. In 100 years, there will be all new people. None of us (save a few newborns) that are here now will be here in 100 years. No one will remember you (unless you discover the key to harnessing nuclear fusion in a way that benefits the earth and doesn’t melt it in a huge fireball). Your home, that you work long hours to pay for will be lived in by someone else–they will change your home’s color scheme, they will change your landscaping, they may even knock it down. Your car, in 100 years, will have sat in the scrap yard for at least 90 of those years. Your job–someone else will be doing it… maybe. All of the stuff that we put so much importance on–the material things, finances, notoriety among our peers, and on and on and on… it will not matter in 100 years. So why do we put so much worry and stress on it now? Why do we push God out of the way and focus so much on ourselves?
Because we love the world.
Evaluation shows us our selfishness. Repentance is the first step to confronting it. Changing our perspective is key to real, practical action. If we do not change our perspective and start focusing on the eternal, we’ll quickly fall right back into the cycle of selfishness. This change, however, must go beyond a mental change of mind. It must be lived out. We must change our perspective and start doing the will of God.
More on that tomorrow…
Leave some feedback: be absolutely honest… what is your perspective–on the temporary, or on the eternal? How will you need to change it?