A friend of mine recently made an accusation about someone by saying, “He’s so self-centered; all he ever thinks about is himself.” What she really meant to say is “He’s so self-centered; he’s more self-centered than I am.”
The fact is we are all self-centered. We start out as babies thinking that the world revolves around us, and in general, it does. Even as adults we retain the desire to have the focus on ourselves. All of this attention is not bad; it is destructive for one person to always put everyone’s needs ahead of their own. Self-centeredness then is not a question of “I am,” or “I’m not,” but instead it is a question of the balance in our relationships. That balance allows us to be not only a cheerful giver, but also a cheerful receiver.
Last week a close friend explained a new dimension to self-centeredness that I had not ever considered. She knows that I wasn’t raised in a denomination that focused on the Bible, but 3 years ago I joined a Bible-based church and now I am eager to hear and learn more about the Word. I can’t get enough! But I have often wished that I knew more, that I had grown up with the Bible and that I could spontaneously use Bible verses to help others. I’ll just never get caught up!
My friend’s words: “God may want to work through you to impact others in your community. Are you so self-centered that you respond, “I don’t think that I am capable of taking on such an awesome responsibility? Really, I don’t think that I am able to do it? God is working and wants to show you the part of His work He will enable you to accomplish. You may not have a thousand Bible verses memorized, but you have a heart for God. Let God use your heart for Him.”
Wow. Can it be true that my self-centeredness is stopping me from fulfilling God’s plan in my life? I guess I need to get over it, or at least balance out my self-centeredness with my full commitment to serving God.
Don’t measure your self-centeredness against anyone else. We are all self-centered to some degree; it allows us to be a cheerful receiver. But don’t let your self-centeredness interfere when God calls you to work in His kingdom.