Tuesday, November 6, 2007

It's not about me

It's not about me
By John Fischer

If your life is not purpose driven, it will be normal and natural to seek the most comfortable alternatives when faced with important decisions or turning points. Without an overall purpose, only self-seeking makes any sense. Which might explain why so many people today are self-seeking and why they feel justified in being so. Without a higher motivation or calling, there is no compelling reason to deny one’s self anything.

Former generations had more reasons than current ones to deny the self. Two world wars and a great depression demanded much from people in order to serve the cause of country and family. But in an age of relative ease and materialistic affluence, the pursuit of happiness eclipses everything. And this pursuit is constantly fed by advertising and modeled by the entertainment world, so that it becomes normal to assume you deserve, if not a break, at least a better life. Spend a few minutes in an electronics gift store and consider the “creature comforts” that seem normal, even necessary to us today, but would have appeared distasteful to former generations sacrificing their sons and daughters for the cause of freedom.

Enter the purpose driven life and suddenly you have another way to look at life. Instead of comfort there is character. Instead of self there are others to serve. Instead of being all about me, it’s all about God. Instead of individuality there is my place in a family. Instead of personal achievement there is a mission. Without someone or something higher that myself, everything sinks back down to me, and how boring is that? I don’t know about you but I’m tired of myself, and if I am, I’m sure you are too. I am reminded of that classic Bette Midler line in the movie “Beaches,” “So I’ve talked enough about me, what do you think about me?”

Jesus said you won’t find your life until you lose it; you won’t have something until you are willing to give it away; you won’t be first until you are last. It all works backwards to the natural order, but then again this isn’t natural selection. This is learning to live according to God’s great purposes for us and finding out that real joy and fulfillment in life is all about living for a God who is higher and better than anything this world has to offer.

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