"Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. "(NIV) Philippians 2:3-4
The title of the devotion might have aroused the thought of acceptance of the acclamation or denial of it. If perhaps you were not moved by it, allows me to add to the title by saying “I am better off without him/her”. Did that ring a bell?
Every human, whether a Christian or not, has inner pride. A “pride” that reacts aggressively when our intelligence or dignity is trampled upon by another person. We utter the words “I am better off without you” when we have to part company with one who was formerly dear to us. We might not wish that but this inner pride won’t accept defeat easily.
I would like us to put on another perspective glasses and view this from a “mathematical” angle; I (i.e self) + better off (pride) + without you (self) = “Selfishness”. Yeah, these are selfish words and the whole act is an act of selfishness on our part and the other person involved. The moment we allow our interest or pride to cloud our judgment and relegate to the background the interest or ideas of the other person, we are acting in a selfish manner. Behaving in this manner is not so easy to tell but a doubtless clue is when our statements become concentrated with “I”s. Those are red flags for us to stop, take a step back for a moment and think about the other person.
“I am better off without you” can be replaced with “You are important to me”. Isn’t that lovely? Beloved, the Bible encourages us to have the mindset as Christ Jesus who considered us more important and therefore left His heavenly glory to come to earth to die a shameful death for our salvation (Philippians 2:6-8). Therefore, let’s imitate Him by valuing the ideas and interests of others. God bless you.