Silence, Stillness, and Centering before God (2 minutes)
Prayer for Presence
Lord Jesus, I believe you want to speak to me in deep and profound ways this moment. May I be attentive to your loving and merciful voice.
Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Philippians 2:4
Do you want to maintain other people’s respect? When they share their struggles and successes with you, don’t say, ‘That’s nothing; let me tell you about my…!’ Haman, a Persian government official mentioned in the book of Esther, was self-absorption personified. He ‘boasted to [his friends and wife] about his vast wealth, his many sons, and all the ways the king had honored…and…elevated him above the other nobles and officials’ (Esther 5:11).
Not once do we read of his expressing interest in anyone but himself. Indeed, he was so resentful of the favor the king had shown towards Mordecai, a Jew, that he built a gallows on which to hang him. And how did the story end? The king hanged Haman on the gallows he had built for Mordecai. So unless you want to tie a noose around your own neck, stop talking so much about yourself! Chances are you may not even be aware of this character flaw in your communication. So ask God to point it out when you do it, and give you grace to overcome it. Self-centeredness dies slowly, so start with small steps.
Try going for a whole day without making your issues the focus of every conversation. Give everyone you meet your full attention – and watch your friendships multiply and your relationships deepen. The word for you today is: ‘Look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.’
Heavenly Father, help me to focus more on others and on You than on myself. In Jesus’ Name, Amen
Space for Reflection (take 2-3 minutes to be silent or write out your thoughts or prayers from the scripture passage or devotional)
May the Lord bless us and keep us and cause His face to shine upon us from this day forth and forevermore. Amen
Conclude with Silence (2 minutes)