It’s an unchanging key to the Kingdom: life expands and contracts according to our preoccupation with self. “If your first concern is to look after yourself, you’ll never find yourself. But if you forget about yourself and look to me, you’ll find both yourself and me.” (Matthew 10:39)
We get stuck in our own needs and wonder why life isn’t “better” for us. The solution is simple: Raise your sights and your concern to those around you, forget about yourself and ask what you can do for the person standing in front of you. That is Christian maturity: the bearing of fruit. Life is too short to be self-conscious, timid, and retiring. A mature disciple of Jesus is one who has become outgoing, servant-minded, and others-focused. The question to ask is, “What can I do to help that man bear his load?”
Karl Menninger, the famous psychiatrist, noted that the great problem in his psychiatric hospital was how to get the patients to do anything for others, “for they are not interested in others; they are interested solely in themselves – that’s why they are here!”
May God deliver us from the shallowness of soul-sucking selfishness!