Ending the Obesession with Self
“He must become greater; I must become less.” John 3:30
Have you ever considered how much time you think about yourself? Do you wander by a mirror and catch a quick glance? Do you browse fashion magazines and imagine for hours how you would look in some snazzy new outfit? Have you ever thought about how many of your sentences begin with “I” or end with “me”? The obsession with self starts early. Moments after birth, the self demands its own way. A baby will scream, pout or keep his parents awake for hours at night asserting his obsession with self. Have you ever wondered why it is that your parents never had to teach you how to be selfish? For most, no matter what the issue, life seems to revolve around answering the question, “What do I get out of this?”
One of the most compelling sermons I ever heard was given years ago by the former president of Moody Bible Institute, Joe Stowell. The sermon I heard hit me at the core of my being. He said, “One day, life won’t be about 'me’…it won’t be about you. It won’t be about the covers of magazines, or CEO status, or diplomas or anything else. Life will come down to Jesus.” I was challenged by the following portion from Joe’s message and hope you will be also:
“I’m only fifty-seven, and I already find myself weary of the hollow thoughts of what few accomplishments I may have mustered in my life. My failures continue to embarrass me. The inadequacies I have carried with me since my youth still frustrate me. My insecurities still trouble my soul. And the praise of others has an increasingly hollow ring. I’m tired of worrying about what people think about me. I’m weary of the carnal feeling that sometimes haunts me when someone talks about his favorite preacher and it’s not me. Bottom line, I just get flat-out tired of me. BUT I NEVER GET TIRED OF JESUS. After all these years, I still find Him more compelling, more engaging, more awesome, more surprising, more fulfilling, and more attractive than ever before. I never get tired of singing His praises or of watching Him perform. I find Him to be gripping. Absorbing. Beyond comprehension. And that’s why – along with Paul, my grandmother, Billy Graham and countless others through the years – I find myself longing to know Him better.”
Today, work on ending the obsession with self by taking your eyes off of yourself. Instead, direct them toward Jesus, who is the Author and Perfecter of our faith.
1. How much are you obsessed with yourself? Monitor your thoughts and actions during the day today. Then tonight, talk to God about how much you think primarily about yourself and how that affects your relationship with God and others.
2. What can you do to break the obsession you have with yourself?
This devotional was written by Robin Dugall.