Philippians 2:1-4 – So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
I recently tried to go Christmas shopping and I think I missed a few birthdays trying to get into the parking lot. Once I finally made it into the parking lot, I was further frustrated as everyone was bumper to bumper cutting each other off, honking, and being cheerless while the song “Joy to the World” blared on the outdoor speakers.
In our culture, the prevailing mood is selfishness. Good luck finding anyone who will do anything that does not, in some way, benefit them.
Thankfully, Jesus is not selfish but instead a Servant. In Mark 9-10, there is a truly silly argument between Jesus’ disciples as to which one was the greatest and who should sit on His right and left to rule over creation forever. Rather than rebuking these selfish disciples, Jesus redirected their desire for greatness to service. Jesus said that not only is serving a godly gift, but that as our God, He came not to be served, but to serve.
With Jesus in mind, Paul reminds us of how Jesus has served us. Every Christmas, we remember that what Jesus did was in our best interests, not His own, by leaving His throne where He was served by angels, to enter into human history to do his chores as a kid and work a carpentry job as a man. Every Easter, we remember how Jesus is our selfless Servant who died for our sins and rose for our salvation.
Jesus lived for you, by faith lives in you, and by the Spirit wants to live through you so that His relationship with you becomes the template for your relationship with Him and others as you embrace serving and reject selfishness.
On a sliding scale, are you honestly more selfish or more of a servant?