Contributor: Ryan Moffat, BS in Bible and Theology from Multnomah University. Pastor of Vast Church.
More people jump off the Golden Gate Bridge than the Brooklyn Bridge. “What does this prove?” you might ask? It proves that the money, prestige and “success” that San Francisco prides itself in isn’t leading to a “happier” individual.
It proves that all the material blessings and the image that people are working overtime to project isn’t actually leading to inner peace, security and meaning. It proves exactly what Jesus said when He walked the earth 2000 years ago.
Gain the world
He asked; “What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?” Evidently Jesus believed that there were more significant threats to life than poverty and being “unsuccessful”. Jesus saw the real threat was to achieve “the American Dream” while simultaneously forfeiting Jesus’ Dream
Author and speaker; Francis Chan put it this way; “We should not be afraid of failing, rather we should be afraid of succeeding at things that don’t really matter.”
So we must constantly ask the question; “Am I experiencing and living a life of meaning and purpose that will outlive me?” The way we do that is to move from “selfishness to selflessness.”
Interest in others
In his book “How to Win Friends and Influence People”, Dale Carnegie explores what it means to be a person of influence to shape cultures and communities.
He comes to a simple, yet profound conclusion; “You influence people by genuinely taking an interest in other people.” While Carnegie brings fresh insight and potent illustrations of this simple concept it is not something he invented.
He learned it from Jesus who the Apostle Paul describes in Philippians 2:
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit but in humility regard others as more important than yourselves.
Do not merely look out for your own interest but also for the interest of others.
Have the same mind that was in Christ Jesus who being in the very nature God, did not consider equality with God a thing to be held onto but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant and became obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”
Carnegie, Francis Chan, and the Apostle Paul simply learned this mentality of “others first” from the life and teaching of Jesus!
Selflessness genuinely rejoices in others success, enjoys seeing others win, delights when someone “outdoes” them. Selflessness isn’t always asking; “How does this make me look” because it’s genuinely always looking out for the joy of others.
Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!
How has your focus changed from selfishness to selflessness during your recovery journey? What do you believe are the largest contributing factors to this change?
About the Author: Ryan received his BS in Bible and Theology and a minor in counseling from Multnomah University. He has pastored students, families and is passionate about Christ-centered recovery and healing. He’s been married to his beautiful wife Michelle for 13 years and they enjoy raising four crazy, unique and special kids together. Ryan is the teaching pastor at Vast Church in Sisters, OR and is currently working on his Masters in Theology at Western Seminary in Portland, OR
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Last Updated & Reviewed By: Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC on December 28, 2015
Published on AddictionHope.com