Sunday, November 05, 2017

Serving versus impressing

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TODAY’S SPECIAL: Matthew 23:1-22

TO CHEW ON:‘But all their works they do to be seen by men.’” Matthew 23:5

This word stabs me right where I live this morning, coming as it does on the heels of a prayer for how to handle something nasty I’ve seen in my own heart.

Pride! It stinks. And it’s so adaptable. You think you’ve finally dealt with it once and for all and then you sniff it coming from another area of your life.

The trouble with pride is it’s also subtle. You share a moment from your life on Facebook, perhaps, and then catch yourself growing more and more puffed up as the likes, reactions, and comments come in. Or you slip little bits about yourself into the conversation and feel miffed when someone changes the subject away from you. Yuck!

I see dealing with pride as similar to dealing with the eating / overeating issue. The trouble with weight control is you can’t just stop eating or you’d die. It’s similar with ego control. You can’t stop communicating as in sharing yourself with others. If you did you’d die socially and emotionally.

Detecting when that self-disclosure changes from a desire to share your life  in a healthy way to grubbing for compliments, praise, and strokes is similar, I think, to sensing when eating goes from a legitimate need for nourishment to indulgence.

Thankfully, Jesus didn’t stop talking at verse five. His solution to our easy-to-come-by overweening, self-exalting attitude comes in Matthew 23:11:

‘But he who is greatest among you shall be your servant.’

PRAYER: Dear Father, thank You for answering my personal and specific request with this passage today. Help me to give pride the boot by focusing on serving rather than impressing. Amen.

Unless otherwise noted all Scripture quotations are taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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