Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Psalm 51:10 ESV
Listen, I know when you first read the title you were probably taken aback a bit, but I hope you hear my heart on this–sometimes we really do just need to get over ourselves.
We live in a world where it’s all about ourselves and what makes “me” happy. The problem starts when we live a life that is only focused on ourselves then we can become entitled, self-righteous, judgmental and sometimes downright ugly.
When our thoughts and lives are filled with only thoughts about us and our needs/wants, then the rest of our relationships become strained or even nonexistent. It’s hard to have a relationship with someone who only thinks about themselves.
So, what’s a person to do who is struggling with this? First, I’d say get a copy of Tim Keller’s book, “The Freedom of Self Forgetfulness”. It has radically changed my thoughts on this whole concept. In his book he talks about a gospel-humility that takes thinking of ourselves right off the table.
How do we even do that?
Through lots of prayer, lots of patience and lots of practice. I read this book over a year ago and it’s still been something I wrestle with daily, but something that I intend to keep on wrestling with and working through.
We spend our days scurrying around trying to fill our lives with more of stuff to make us happy, but the reality is that the “stuff” we long for isn’t really going to bring us the fulfillment we are looking for. Because we’ve been so focused on ourselves for so long that when something bad happens we become bothered, offended, hurt, or frustrated because we feel like someone has “wronged us”.
Throughout Keller’s book and through Paul’s letter to the church in Corinth (see 1 & 2 Corinthians) we see that we have no right to be bothered, offended, hurt or frustrated.
Who are we after all?
We are each imperfect people on a journey. Each one completely different and each difficult at times, but when we start to learn to get over ourselves we can lay aside our self and start to live with a gospel humility that takes our self out of the equation.
Yikes, I know that sounds hard, and maybe even sounds weird, and Lord knows I have not even begun to master this idea, but oh sweet sisters, can you imagine if we all started to live with a gospel humility in our lives.
As Tim Keller says, “a truly gospel humble person is not a self-hating person or a self-loving person, but a self-forgetful person.”
I don’t know about you, but I am desperately ready to let go of my need to worry about “self” and start to become the woman God created me to be.
- If you too are ready to start this process, then first thing I’d suggest is that you pray about it.
- Pray specifically and ask God to create in you a clean heart (read Psalm 51).
- Read through Psalm 51 and ask Him to show you where you fall short in this particular issue and
- Then get ready for God to take you on adventure.
It won’t always be comfortable, but it will be fulfilling as you seek to get over yourself and become more like the one God created you to be. I can’t wait to hear what God shows you as you begin this journey.
PS – Please, don’t take my word on this whole idea, grab a copy of the book “The Freedom of Self Forgetfulness” by Tim Keller and read about it for yourself…you’ll be so glad you did.