Death to Self
Philippians 2:8 “he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death – even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place, and gave him the name that is above every name.” “A successful entrepreneur invited his son and daughter to apply for a job at his company upon their graduation from university. They both harbored great ambition, and the father desperately wanted to bless them both in every possible way. In his interview the son asked his father’s lieutenant about pay, vacation days, and whether he would have to work outside of office hours. In her interview, the daughter asked about the goals of the organization and what she could do to enable those. They both joined and approached their careers in very different ways. The son optimized his personal cost-benefit ratio, putting in just enough effort to fulfil his requirements, judiciously clearing all his annual leave and negotiating hard for pay raises and promotions. His sister, despite having more family commitments, managed to balance all her obligations while putting the interests of the organization above her own. The brother’s career advancement outpaced hers for several years, but her efforts, her results, and most importantly her mindset were increasingly recognized at the company. She started to get promoted ahead of her brother, enjoying the commensurate compensation and control of her time. She eventually took over as CEO while her brother, filled with rage at his lack of promotion, quit the company. He tried his hand at several jobs, but without the backing of his father, found that advancement of his interests proved even more difficult in these new companies. Lacking purpose and fulfillment, the brother became an alcoholic and fell into a deep depression. Whose self-interest was better served, the brother or the sister?” Father, you love us so much and you want nothing more than to bless us. You make it so clear that the best way to advance our self-interest is to forget about ourselves. For it is in giving that we receive. For it is in humbling ourselves that you lift us up. Thank you for this reminder today and for giving us the ultimate example of your son. I commit to join you in your work rather than use your power for my agenda, fully recognizing that a natural outflow of this attitude is abundance and fulfillment. I love you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.