Blake Allen, Dunbar Cave Campus Pastor, LHBC
3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
Not too long ago, I was reading a book about a missionary. The book wasn’t all that memorable but one thing did stick out. The author was talking how difficult it was for people today to have healthy disagreements. He argued people used to be able to disagree on a topic and still walk away without any bitterness or malice towards the other person. Nowadays, that concept seems so foreign.
Fast forward to 2022 and it is obvious things have changed. Just turning on the news will confirm this reality. One example of this is politics. It’s not longer about staying away from certain conversations at the dinner table. Now, it looks like not even dining at the same dinner table if someone does not align with your political view. If someone offends, the answer now is not forgiveness. If someone says something we disagree with, the answer now is to cancel them. If someone attacks your view, the answer now is to hold a grudge. But since when has this become the norm for the believer?
Everyone has a perspective. Everyone has an opinion. Everyone has a side. We may not see things from the other person’s view, but how often do we really try to see someone elses view? How often do we invite others who are different from us to dine at our tables? How often do we put ourselves in the other person’s shoes. We cast judgment to quick. We are defensive. We take offense fast. Yet this is foreign to the Biblical living.
James 1:19 states, Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger. Often times, we are slow to hear, quick to speak, quick to anger. But this does not produce the righteousness of God.
When it comes down to it, our posture towards others we disagree with is a reflection of our hearts. It’s a heart issue. And at the root, it is a testimony to whether or not we count others more important than ourselves. If we did count others more important than ourselves, we would be slow to speak, slow to anger, and quick to listen. If we counted others more important than ourselves, then we would try to understand the other side of the story. If we walked in humility, then our defenses would come down. If we loved people different from us like Jesus did, it would reflect in our attitudes and actions.
The key to this is a relationship with Christ, and building relational equity with others. It looks like more coffee conversations. It looks like dining with those who are not a carbon copy of yourself. It looks like becoming outward focused instead of inward. It looks like taking initiative and engaging those who you would not normally interact with. Maybe, just maybe, you might leave with a different perspective of the person whom you never truly knew.
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Dear Heavenly Father, help us to walk in humility and count others more important than ourselves. In Jesus’ name, amen!
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
1 Samuel 30:6b
But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God.