Focal Passages: Lk. 9:23-24, 57-62; 21:1-4; Rom. 12:1-2
“What in the world is wrong with people?” That was the
exasperated question shouted to the wind by the recent victim of a random act
of selfishness. She had waited patiently for a parking space to be vacated with
her turn-signal flashing.
Then, as you probably guessed, some selfish, self-centered,
self-absorbed, self-worshipping jerk recklessly swooped in and brazenly stole
the parking space as she sat waiting. Jumping out of his car, the villainous
thief slunk hastily into the store, carefully avoiding eye contact with his
victim so as not to acknowledge his crime. I was amazed at the overwhelming
selfishness — the unbridled disregard for others — that had obviously become a
way of life for him. “What in the world is wrong with people?” Great question!
My answer: Selfishness!
Now before you conclude that my diagnosis of the world’s problem
is overly simplistic, take a look at what got us into this shape. Remember
Lucifer? He desired to be the boss regardless of what or whom he destroyed in
the process. And when we seek our own pleasures and comforts at the expense of
others, we prove ourselves to be no better.
Allow me to suggest a few random acts of kindness that will
change the world and revitalize your joy. One — wherever you go (especially at
church), park as far from the building as your health will allow and walk.
Leave those closer spaces for someone else. Besides, the exercise will do you
some good. Two — walk fast! Be the first one to the door so that you can hold
it open for everyone else. Three — smile. Yes, smile. You may not feel like it.
You may have had a crummy day. But the smile you selflessly give away may
brighten someone else’s day (and yours too). Four — sincerely ask someone how
they are doing and take the time to listen. Engage them in conversation about
OK, maybe these random acts of selflessness won’t change the
entire world, but they will change your world. And if everyone thought less
about themselves and more about others, then just imagine how different the
world would be!
“Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit,
but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each
of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of
others. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 2:3-5,
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