“If anyone would like to acquire humility, I can, I think, tell him the first step. The first step is to realize that one is proud…If you think you’re not conceited, it means your are very conceited indeed.” C. S. Lewis
Today I read an article that talked about a teenager that was upset that her dad was laid off from his engineering job. She went on to explain how she is not able to have money to go to the movies or eat fast food with her friends. “It is so unfair, I deserve better,” she said.
Everyone is probably shaking their head and thinking, “Boy, that girl is very selfish.” We do not like to admit it, but we are sometimes just like that girl: selfish. The mentality is that the world should revolve around us. If it is to boast about our own self pity and failures, or to show off our accomplishments or the new material possession that we just bought, we like the attention.
Philippians 2:3-4 Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.
To be selfish is to be self seeking. Looking out for number one, worried about how things will affect you instead of others. Humility is the opposite of selfishness. One needs to consider (see the value/worth) of the other individuals around them, to see that the value of the other individuals around them surpasses their own.
We are to be imitators of Christ (Eph 5:1).
Philippians 2:5-8 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
Jesus, God in flesh, willingly took a lower position by becoming a slave (servant). He did not cry and whine in heaven saying, “But Father I shouldn’t have to veil my attributes, it’s not fair. I’m God. I deserve better.” Jesus willingly veiled some of his attributes to be tempted in all ways like us (Heb 4:15) and to die the worst death possible for this lost world that was in rebellion against Him (1 John 2:2).
This really puts to light how selfish we really are at times. When we are selfish, we are focusing on ourselves instead of Jesus Christ.
If one has been justified, their life should be characterized by humility and love (Romans 12:3–21). One should fulfill his role in the body of Christ and not think too highly of himself (12:3–8). The main characteristic of a believer should be the love he has for others (12:9–21). A believer should submit to the authority that God places in charge, even if the authorities are unbelieving (13:1–14). Also, in the area of Christian liberty, one must be humble and not judge other believers. Out of love for the weaker brother, one should relinquish his own “rights”, bring glory to God, and not cause his brother to stumble (14:1–15:13)