I’ve known Christ for a long time now and I feel blessed because my parents enrolled me in Christian schools from pre-school to high school that teaches about the Bible and about Christ. However, I realized that knowledge about Christ doesn’t necessarily equate to living like Christ. We can know Christ but not live a life that follows His example – and I’m often guilty of this. (Good thing that our God is really patient, right?) I’m not saying that Christians are perfect. Everyone is a work in progress. Some take a long time to change and some become the opposite but the most important thing is we allow ourselves to be changed from glory to glory (2 Corinthians 3:18).
Before, I was so consumed about the things of this world and of my selfish passions. As I learned more about Christ via His Word, the Bible, I realized how twisted my prayers, my views, and lifestyle were. When I prayed, I just focused on myself, family, and circle of friends. I always think of what would benefit me rather than be a channel of God’s blessing. I thought that going to Church and reading His Word is enough. Eventually it hit me that Christ didn’t mean for me to just live like that.
Life will be frustrating and shallow without God. Yes, we’ll experience pleasure but they are just temporary. There’s a higher and lasting joy that God can give to those who seek Him more and obey His will selflessly. In this world, there will be a lot of things that would draw our attention. They are all counterfeit things that offer temporary bliss but would leave you empty right after the ‘high’.
How do we get past those counterfeits and overcome our “Me! Me! Me! Mentality”?
Focus on Jesus. How? Get to know Him more by spending more time to learn about Him via the Bible. The Bible is the best manual about life that we can ever have. It surpasses the knowledge of any living person in this world. At first, it would be hard to understand the words especially when you’re using versions that use vocabulary and sentence patterns that aren’t common to our generation. Start with a simple version; try the English Standard Version (ESV) or New International Version (NIV). Try out devotional materials. There are plenty of them in bookstores or you can look for some online. Some of my favorites are found in setapartgirl.com, h3sean.com, and desiringgod.org. Before reading God’s Word, the Bible, ask for His leading and revelation. We can only understand His Word better if we ask help from Him.
Manage your time and resources well. The more you expose yourself to worldly things, the more you’ll be consumed by them. Spend more time meditating on God’s Word. Spend more time with people who can be of good influence and those who can lead you closer to God.
Learn the art of saying ‘no’. There are plenty of things that can draw our attention away from Jesus and the life that he wants us to live. Say ‘no’ to things that the Bible calls sin. It’s easier to say no to those things when you focus on Jesus and what your purpose is. Always ask God to reveal things to you before making any decision and you’ll be surprised at how He reveals Himself to you.
Realize that nothing in this world can satisfy you. Have you ever realized how we all crave for things and then end up craving for more? It’s a never-ending cycle of cravings and desires. We are made to long for something that nothing in this world can satisfy. Inner peace can only be attained once you have placed your value in Christ and once you have realized that only a life in Christ can satisfy you. It’s going to be a hard battle but once you persevere, you would start to experience that peace. Allow yourself to experience God’s love; be remade to exhibit His glory. Ask God to cultivate in you and lead you to the desires that are pleasing to Christ. Focus on things and do things that have an eternal value.
Life is not all about you. We coexist with other people in this world. Being mature in our spiritual walk includes being Christlike, selfless and considering others more than our selfish desires. A sign of maturity is being able to show the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control) to others. We love others the 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 way.
These are some pointers that helped me overcome the “Me! Me! Me! Mentality”. I can’t say that I’m totally over it. There are probably still some remnants of it but I know that God is working on it with me. May they be of help to you as well.
Just in case you haven’t heard Toby Mac’s ‘Lose My Soul’, here it is: