We live in a narcissistic world. We have been trained without even realizing it, maybe, that our focus should be all about our image and ourselves.
I’m seeing this type of environment affect us in very real, unflattering ways. And I’m not immune – but I’m trying to fight it off.
For the most part, a lot of us don’t seem to be on time anywhere. – Impression shown? – my time is more important than your time.
We commonly fail to reply to invitations or get togethers with a ‘yes’ or ‘no’ we will or will not be there. – Interpretation? – I don’t care about how much effort it takes you to make food or prepare, I just want to see if anything else better comes up in the meantime. If not, I’ll be there.
We pride ourselves on owning the latest brands, fashions, and trends. Result? We think we matter more because of what we own or wear – instead of because of who we are as people.
We “charm” others as much as possible to get as many fringe benefits as we can from the relationship. Free dinner? Great. Professional courtesy? Better. But the relationships are shallow and temporary. For people don’t like to be “taken” for only what they can give someone else.
There are so many more examples of our growing selfishness and “me-focused” living. We have become a society of “takers” and if things don’t meet our personal schedules or demands, we complain or whine. We flit from church to church, friend to friend, job to job – in the same quest. To find fullness. Happiness. Acceptance. Perfection. Yet only God can provide those and He often only does it once we submit and accept the imperfection of things in our life. In the process, we need to learn to find a way to give back for Him and be content and joyful amidst those same circumstances.
I don’t really hear people address selfishness much anymore. It’s hard to tell a friend or family member that “you are being selfish!” But we can refuse to feed into it. We don’t have to keep inviting someone over who cares less about our time or efforts. We can buy clothes that don’t have a name-brand and still be trendy and pulled-together. We can refuse to be pulled into peer pressure to have to maintain a certain image and we can be blessed when others give to us…yet blessed more when we give to others of our time, talents, or possessions.
I don’t want to be a selfish person. I don’t want to be so focused on my own little world that I fail to see what someone else is going through. And I certainly don’t want to raise selfish kids.
It’s not about me. Even though at times I can be encouraged when I am appreciated and I SHOULD surround myself with those who add to my life in a positive way….I still need to remember it’s not about me.
I am not more important than the next person. My needs do not matter more. And it’s okay if I do without sometimes.
That is real living. Real loving.
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