Now then, listen, you wanton creature, lounging in your security and saying to yourself, “I am, and there is none besides me.” Isaiah 47: 8
Have you by any chance seen the movie, Grace Unplugged? It was in theaters last fall, so it should be available on DVD. Surprisingly, it is a good, clean, family movie – which is rare – and it has a great message. I don’t want to give away too many details, but it’s about a family whose daughter seems to be moving away from the values she has been taught growing up. It has a really great line when the father says to her: “You always said you wanted to have a life centered on God, but I have been hearing an awful lot lately about ‘What I want, what I need, and Me, Me, Me.’ ”
What a “me generation” we are! It’s easy to think that the world revolves around “me”, and it’s all about me and nothing else!
In fact, I recently read a Time Magazine article (May 20, 2013), which was written about this very topic, entitled, “Me! Me! Me”. The author wrote about “what a self-absorbed, lazy, entitled, narcissistic, overindulged, materialistic, and shallow people we have become.”
One of the most disturbing statements I read was that our teenagers and young adults have become so convinced of their own greatness that the National Study of Youth and Religion found that the guiding morality for 60% of those surveyed was that they would know what to do in any given situation just “by feeling what is right”. They have no need or desire for parental or spiritual guidance. Many of them exhibit a complete lack of empathy of the kind that allows them to feel any sort of compassion for others. Many disrespect authority and choose to do what they think is right.
It’s obvious as we look around us, that the vast majority of people in the world seem to only care about their own needs, and not about those who are truly “in need”. Our culture has taught us to love ourselves and put our own needs and wishes above all else. We believe that nothing is more important than what we feel, think, like, or desire.
We have become obsessed with appearance, intellect, power, money, position, and social media. (We even get overly anxious if we feel as if we are missing out on something and have to constantly check “to keep up”. How much time we waste doing so, which could be spent on real relationships and more worthwhile endeavors!)
Our greatest purpose in life seems to be to glorify and satisfy ourselves. This question says it well, “Why worship God when you can be one yourself?” Or this one, “If Satan can’t get people to worship him, he will convince them to worship themselves.” What “wanton, selfish creatures” we are!
This is not what God desires or commands of us. We are told in Scripture that we are to first and foremost love Him and then love our neighbors. God’s love is selfless and unconditional and He desires us to love in the same way. Our lives are to be focused on Him and on helping others. How we disrespect and dishonor Him when we think only of ourselves. If we will center our lives on God and serving Him, we will find our problems, issues, needs, and desires seem to fade away, and we will have more purpose and meaning in life. God wants us to have more, to have the best of what He has to offer us, and if we will look to Him, He will fill our lives with the blessings that truly matter.
We have become ingrained in this world to have a self-absorbed mindset. It will take strength to develop a deep resolve in our hearts to focus on what is truly important in this life, and that is to live one that is in every way pleasing to Him and will bring Him honor and glory.
May we always remember, “It’s not all about me”. Nor is it about me at all! It’s about Him, our Creator and Sustainer of life, the One who gives us life and longs to give us more. He doesn’t want just a part of us part of the time. He wants all of us!
Our most kind and gracious God, forgive us for thinking so much about ourselves and what we want. Thank you for loving us and blessing us with your goodness, even when we don’t deserve it. Help us to keep our eyes focused on you and may we honor you by showing our love to others. Amen.