Definition of Self-centeredness
Is it any wonder that today we see more and more people who like to be the center of attention. After all, it is pitched on almost every commercial whether on TV, or the internet, or news story, or billboard that can be seen by more than two people. It is a rare occasion that we are asked to focus on others rather than ourself.
Every new product or improved product emphasizes how much more important or noticed I can be by having it. How much more you will be noticed or accepted by your peers and those that may come in contact with you. You must promote yourself by any means so that you will not be left behind or left out of the group. If you do not promote yourself you may get left behind or left out, or so it is implied.
Self-centeredness is defined as “ME” being the center of my world, and everything must revolve around that center. If it does not then I have no real purpose in life.
Signs of a self-centered person
What are some signs of a self-centered person? One sign may be that they are always outspoken. They are always taking the stage and hogging a conversation. They always have an opinion and they are always ready to share that opinion. Whether the opinion has any facts or validity to support it is not important. But there is a lot of rhetoric to hide the fact of no substance.
Self-centered people usually have a lot of emotion but little supporting evidence to support the emotion. Emotion may be alright when grounded in facts and substance but is of little value when it stands alone.
Self-centered people who are not great speakers will default to what I call weird actions. I know of one person who when he feels that he is being ignored or is not receiving the attention that he wants, will act as if he is having a heart attack and will call 911. Of course, the 911 responders are going to come because they are diligent and would not wittingly forsake any person in a real emergency. That person knows that and gets to be the center of attention every time he does it. That is the epitome of self-centeredness when someone will abuse a service that is set up to help those who are in real need, for the sake of getting a few minutes of attention.
Other means of getting attention are creating minor incidents by spilling food or cutting in front of people or calling other people names or just being rude to others.
Why are people self-centered?
I mentioned above that almost everything promoted in every media is pushing the agenda of being SELF-centered. The products, the commercials, the movies, and the TV commercials and almost any media promote self-centeredness. But to add to those, it seems that our leaders, whether political, educational, religious or even service oriented push the idea of being self-focused. With so much pressure to focus on self, it is no wonder that caring for others is a lost art.
But why promote self? Believe it or not, it is an inborn drive. If we go back to the beginning, we can find the root of the self-centered drive. It all began in the Garden of Eden. The first human beings, Adam and Eve, were created in the image of the Creator. The Creator was not a self-centered Being. So unselfish is He that He manifested Himself as a Triune Being; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Adam was created as a triune being having a spirit which was housed in a human(flesh and blood body) with a mind that had the ability to reason and make choices. All of these were under the Lordship of the Creator to whom Adam was subject. But there came a day when Adam made the choice to not honor the Lordship of the Creator and chose to rather focus on his own abilities and make his own choices with his own interests as the criteria. Self and pride became the focus of all human beings from that time onward.
Self is the problem
When Adam chose to rule himself, self became the focus of his life. This then became the default of every person born into the human race. Our forefather chose that for us. In that choice, we have no say. It was decided for us. We do have a say in whether we shall continue down that path or not. Every human being is endowed with the right to choose whom he or she will serve. You can choose to serve your Creator or you can choose to serve “self”, (yourself). It is truly unfortunate that when Adam rebelled against the Creator, that he turned over his ability to rule to the “god of this world”, satan, who was a fallen angel. There is only One true Being Who can rule, and that is the Creator, Himself, Who is manifested as the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
So, when we are told to focus on our self and become “The Captain of Our Soul”, we are being totally misled. It would be like telling an ant to play a Tchaikovsky piano concerto. The ant has no concept of what a piano is much less what a piano concerto is and has no facility by which to produce such a beautiful musical masterpiece. It is an impossibility for human beings to not focus on themselves. When so-called, psychologists try to tell us how to help ourselves, they are treading on thin ice, if treading at all.
How to solve the problem
If focussing on self is not the solution to the problem, then what is? If we do not focus on self, on what do we focus? The answer is simple. It is so simple that the so-called professionals will laugh at the suggestion of it. The answer is to focus on others. But, you say, you have just stated that we can not achieve such a state. I did say that we as human beings are not capable of becoming others-centered. But it is not impossible for the Creator of human beings to be not self-centered. So, how can that be?
The scripture says, “I have been crucified with Christ, nevertheless I live, and the life I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Lord Jesus Who gave His life for me.” That term “crucified” means you are dead. The life you live after is not you at all but Christ in you. The scripture says, “Christ in you, the hope of glory.” It also says, “For it is He(God) Who is in you both to will and to do of His good pleasure.” So, it is no longer “your self” who lives in this body, but it is a totally “new creation” which functions by the faith of Jesus. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says, “If any man be in Christ Jesus, he is a new creation.”
When you enter into Christ Jesus by dying to “self”, you are a totally different creature. This new creation has the ability to move the focus from “self” to others. It becomes the normal because the focus of the Creator has always been on others. It was first manifested in the Trinity and then in the creation of beings formed in His image, human beings.
Experience the New Creation
The experience of becoming a New Creation in Christ Jesus is like nothing that this earth can produce. The closest comparison would be as if being blind and suddenly receiving site. It is as if you are in a dark room and suddenly a bright light is turned on. The one that I experienced was as if I were dead and then I became alive. There is no way to compare the experience of becoming a new creation to anything in this life. It is so special that you will never doubt it nor will you ever consider losing it. It is more real than anything else in your life.
The problems caused by self-centered lifestyle will begin to fade from your life. Your focus will begin to center on your Creator and as you grow in Him you will find yourself seeking to serve others, rather than getting others to serve you. You will take on a servant’s attitude in all that you do, even if you are in charge. Problems which you may have experienced, no matter what type, will begin to fade in their importance as you see your Creator begin to intervene on your behalf. Things which were hopeless will become solvable or disappear.
You see, with your Creator, nothing is impossible. The scripture says that “I can do all things through Christ, which strengthens me.” Since your Creator carries that load, you can focus on helping others who have not found your Creator. As you do that you allow your Creator to interact more and more on your behalf in this world because you are becoming more and more like Him.
As you grow as a “New Creation in Christ Jesus”, service to others will become more and more important in your life. It will, because that is what Jesus will do in you. The scripture says, “Let this mind be in you which was in Christ Jesus, who was God but did not think it something to hold on to, but took upon Himself the form of a servant.” The scripture also says, “Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, today and forever.” So, He still serves today, and that is what He does in you, too.
You will be amazed
You will be amazed by what a joyful life you will have as you let Jesus live in you. The world will see the light of the Creator shining in and through you. They will want to know how to receive this purpose and joy that you have. What an opportunity you will have to share real meaning for life with them.
Let the Holy Spirit change your focus today. In changing that focus you will find real life, real joy, and the real purpose for your life. God bless you!