The root of many of the sins that I have wanted to slough off over the past 36 days quite simply boils down to one thing--selfishness. I think this is the biggest problem that I have as well as society in general. We tend to put ourselves before anyone else. "I" and "me" are pronouns too often used.
Turn my heart toward your statutes and not toward selfish gain. Psalm 119:36
As a newly wed wife, I began to understand what it meant to put others first. But, God really began speaking to me about it when I became a mother. Nothing quite says "put me first" than a newborn baby/toddler/child. As my counselor sister-in-law states, "You do need some self-care time." But, this is different than selfishness. That self care time comes after the taking care of others is done. As my kids have become older and more independent, I might have backslid on this a tad. I need to refocus especially when it comes to activities that the boys enjoy and I don't.
Indeed there are those who are last who will be first and first who will be last. Luke 13:30
However, I don't serve my family and do things for them because I want to be first in heaven. I do it out of love. Sometimes I must remind myself of this and ask God to change my heart when someone has just whined to me or when someone leaves their dirty clothes on the floor, for example.
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to our own interest but each of you to the interests of the others. Philippians 2:3-4
God has a mission for you and me and it is bigger than ourselves. What we must remember is that the part we play is not the reward. Stages in life will come and go. But, the only way for it to conclude well is if in our hearts Jesus has increased and our selfishness has decreased. It's not about me, it's all about Him.
He must become greater; I must become less. John 3:30