I am convicted.
Let me tell you why. This week, as I was driving my route for my job, Switchfoots’ latest album Oh! Gravity was spinning and a lyric from lead singer Jon Foreman struck me hard. In American Dream, the second track, he sings “I want to live and die for bigger things / I’m tired of just fighting for just me.”
That is a very ambitious statement. The absolute abandonment of serving yourself I liken to ripping a band-aid off long leg hair. It hurts and usually you pull it slowly off, hair by hair. Sigh, analogy is fun.
How then, does one move past the selfishness? Practicing humility? Thinking before you spend money on something for yourself? Praying for others first instead of complaining? It is easier to ask than to answer, I must confess.
Perhaps it is answering the call to help those in real material need or spiritual need. Both are issues we all struggle with and they can be difficult to identify initially. I suggest finding a specific area where your talents and skills can be used most effectively.
Or, imagine if you sold all your possessions, the things that make you, well, you. You know what I’m thinking about. Your music, your books, your whatever. The things you concentrate on instead of focusing on others. I’m not saying those things are bad to own. Far from it. But when they begin to take your full attention, it becomes a problem. Just give up on yourself for a minute, hour or day. See what happens.
Of course, this is all directed towards myself. If you are affected by these thoughts, good. I am by no means an authority figure on humility and I don’t want to be. I just want to live and die for bigger things than myself. It is a joy-producing idea. And it’s a good way to start living the rest of your life.