All That and More
Verse 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,
We have spent a few days talking about our selfish ambition but the command goes a bit further. Vain conceit may not be a phrase we use regularly but it sure is something we all know about how to live.
Another translation makes this point a bit more clearly by saying, don’t try to impress others. That is something we can all relate to, isn’t it? Whether it is with the way we dress, act or talk, we can easily fall into the trap of trying to make someone else notice us.
There are multiple industries dedicated to help us do this very thing. There are racks of magazines that show us what we show wear to catch someone’s eye and there are plenty of commercials on the TV promoting the latest thing to grab that special someone’s attention. And it isn’t just the advertising companies that have this mastered. Department store clerks are often trained on how to build displays that will make us think that we need to latest fashion to make us stand out.
The make-up, perfume and jewelry companies are always improving their products to attract attention even more. And let’s not forget the diet industry that has us seeing ourselves in such a poor light that we know we must invest in their product to look better.
Of course it is not wrong to want to be healthy and well-dressed but we must keep the motives behind these things in check. When we start trying to draw attention to ourselves instead of seeking to bring glory to God’s name, we may have fallen into the trap of self-worship. And anytime we draw worship away from God, we are not living with Him as Lord of our lives. Vain conceit is a form of idol worship and we must not allow it to have any place in our lives. We need to be in the business of marketing God and the resurrection of His Son instead of any portion of His creation.
Making It Personal
What is a way that trying to impress people shows up in your life? Why is impressing others so important to you? What can you do today to show God’s glory to others?
Making It Personal Kids
Do you ever try to get people to notice you? What do you do to get them to notice you? What could you do to help others notice God?
Father, forgive us for trying to step into Your spotlight. Give us a heart that is sensitive to our motives and help us try to reveal Your glory instead of trying to impress others with ourselves. In Jesus’ name, amen.