We are all self-centered. We can’t help it. Those that think they can help it are self-centered in thinking so. The reason for this is that though we are created in God’s image, we are not God. Our tendency is to place our sense of self-worth in things that we do, things that we have, how we act, what we say, what others think of us or perhaps more precisely, what we think of ourselves compared to others, which all sounds reasonable. Problems arise when those things inevitably fail to deliver; we fail at our job, we lose our temper and spoil the day (or longer) for others, we say something offensive (either intentionally or not), we put our needs ahead of others, etc.
So if we are truly helpless to cure our own self-centeredness, what do we do? The answer is that we do nothing…God does. God knows we are helpless sinners and that we deserve death. What we think of ourselves or what others think of us cannot compare to what the Creator of the Universe thinks of us – He loves us so much that He died to erase our transgressions. This is who we are now, beloved sons and daughters of a merciful God and nothing can or will ever change that. With the help of the Holy Spirit, everything we do is for Him, in His name and in the service of His Kingdom – when viewed through that lens, we don’t need our own sense of worth – we have His.
Thanks for reading, please comment below.
Note: Though I did not use any direct quotes, much of this post was derived from Tim Keller’s amazing book, “The Freedom Of Self-Forgetfulness”. It’s only 47 pages long and costs five dollars – it will take most people about an hour to read and is essential reading for all Christians; indeed, even for non-believers.