Selfless living

15 November 2019
‘Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.’

The Bible makes it really clear that we need to recognise the needs of others and do what we can to meet those needs. We’re called to be selfless and humble. The apostle Paul wrote, ‘I don’t want what you haven – I want you…I will gladly spend myself and all I have for you, even though it seems that the more I love you, the less you love me’ (2 Corinthians 12:14-15 NLT). Paul found fulfilment in giving, not receiving. For him, giving was its own reward, and being successful meant making others successful. That’s because he didn’t look to people for his reward, but to God: ‘Remember that the Lord will reward each one of us for the good we do’ (Ephesians 6:8 NLT). We need to make sure we’re serving others with the right attitude. If we’re helping others in order to get something in return, we need to ask God to remind us that our reward is in heaven. But it doesn’t mean we don’t care for ourselves, or that we should think we’re not as valuable as other people. The Bible says: ‘Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.’ We need a healthy balance of meeting our own needs and meeting the needs of others. After all, if we never meet our own needs, we’ll be serving from an empty, and potentially resentful, place. But it’s important to continually examine our motives and make sure we’re not being selfish. The Bible warns us that: ‘Wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind’ (James 3:16 NLT). Looking out for people’s needs, and then trying to meet those needs, keeps our priorities right. 

 

What Now?

Take some time to reflect on how your attitude is towards serving others. Are you serving with a selfish motive? Are you serving without taking care of yourself? If your answer is ‘yes’, ask God to help you change your attitude.

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