Tuesday, March 19, 2013

It's Not About Me

            I recently wrote this speech to say to our home school group. As you read it, remember that God loves you, and as you do things for others, you are doing them for God. 

            Matthew 25:40: And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

It’s Not About Me

                Amy Carmichael, and Ruth from the Bible; what do these two women have in common?  They didn’t think about themselves when faced with trials.  They decided to do what God wanted them to do, not what they wanted.  They stood firm in their faith, and became some very well-known people in the world’s history.  It is important for us to do the same thing, and not think about ourselves.  Philippians 2: 3-4 says: “Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves.”  Everyone should not look out for His own interests, but also for the interests of others.  We all should love doing things for others, and love others as we do things for them.

            It’s not about me.  What each of us do in our lives should be done for God’s glory.  We are going to be put in positions in our lives where we have to make some tough decisions.  It is important for us to know what to do during those times.  We need to be willing to make the right choice, even if it may not seem like the option that would benefit us the most.  God wants us to do what would benefit others, more than ourselves.

When Ruth’s husband died, Ruth became a widow like her mother-in-law Naomi.  Ruth was faced with a very important decision.  She could either leave and go back home to her parents, or she could go with Naomi to her homeland.  Ruth’s future would be very different depending on which choice she made.  But Ruth didn’t think about her future.  She decided to think about what would benefit Naomi more.  Who would take care of Naomi, if she went by herself?  Ruth 1:16 “But Ruth replied, “Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you.  Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay.  Your people will be my people and your God my God.”  Ruth’s choice to go with Naomi shows just how much she cared for Naomi and her God.  Just like Ruth, when we have a choice to make, it is important to stand firm in what we believe is right, and think about how our decision will affect other people around us.  

            Why can’t we just do what we want in our lives, and not worry about other people at all?   That would be so easy, wouldn’t it?  We could just go about during our day, doing what we wanted to do, and doing what would help just us in our lives; but that would change the world a lot, and not for the better, either.  Think about the times, even just since you woke up this morning, that the people in your life have done something that showed just how much they cared about you.  What if they hadn’t done that thing, even if it was rather small?  Or, what if someone hadn’t thought to tell you about Jesus, and what he has done for us?  Our lives would be totally different if anything like that had happened.  We would feel very alone, and probably wouldn’t be happy very often at all.  Just like we feel blessed and happy when other people do kind things for us, others feel blessed when we think about them.  

            What if everyone started doing things for other people, without worrying about what would happen to themselves?  What if everyone understood and lived by the saying, “It’s not about me?”  We need to set an example, and think about the other people in our lives more than ourselves.  How can we do this, and how will we know that we are making the right decision?  What if we make a choice and it turns out to be the wrong one?  Sometimes a decision can be hard to make, and we won’t know how to decide.  If we choose one thing, it could help many people.  But if we make that decision, it could also put us in danger.  We need to remember that God will show us the way to go, and that he will protect us, no matter what.  Psalms 23:4 “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me, your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”  When we are unsure about what to do, we need to pray, and ask God to help us make the decision that is His will, the decision that will benefit others more than ourselves.  It is not about me.  What we do in our lives should be done to help others.  God will help us to come to the right conclusion about what choice to make, and he will lead us through whatever happens after the choice is made.

Amy Carmichael was a missionary in India from 1895-1951. She once said, “You can always give without loving, but you can never love without giving.”  As we choose to think of others when making decisions, we should remember to do as Amy did.  She loved the little children in India, and lived her life doing what she knew was best for them even though it may not have been the easiest for her.  She loved the children, and gave to them the opportunity to become Christians.  She did it with love, not out of necessity.  Don’t choose to help others because you think it is the right thing to do.  Help others, and think of them instead of yourself, because you know that it is the kind and loving thing to do, and because you want to.

So the next time that you find someone who needs your help, and you have the ability to help them, will you?  Do what God want us to do, and remember that, “It’s not about me,” no matter what the result may end up being?  

The Holy Bible, NIV, 1984.
Liberto, Dan, The story of Ruth through a Childs Eyes (Enumclaw, WA: Winepress Publishing, 2010).
Jackson, Dave and Neta, Hero Tales Volume 1: Amy Carmichael (Bloomington, MN: Bethany House Publishers, 1996).