One of the main reasons Jesus did not go immediately to the cross when he came to earth was to hang around and train and teach us how to treat other people. The basic default of humanity is to love yourself. But we need to love our neighbour too, and one of the best way to learn to love our neighbours is to look at the way Jesus loved people.
Your neighbours are the others that William Booth was talking about – you have to learn how to love them! God has called you to care for more than just yourself – He has called you to care for others too.
And Jesus said to love others the way you love yourself. That’s a great way to help you think through how to think about others. Most people want to improve themselves, and so think about the ways you are thinking of improving yourself, and think about putting some time and effort into making those things happen to yourself.
Jesus thought about other people – He thought about blind people, deaf people, lost people, hurting people. He thought about people from other nations, He thought about sick people. Jesus was not consumed with self-pity and self-this and self-that, he was consumed with the thoughts of others. You know in today’s day and age, it is hard to find people who are thinking of others. Most people are thinking about themselves – what will people think of me, what will this do to my reputation, my future, my income? And base all their actions based on that.
This week I got a few people tell me I was very bold to address certain issues going on in our nation. It’s not boldness, and I am not trying to blow my own trumpet, but I love the people who are deceived and who are going astray from living a life of victory far more than I love myself. I will do what is right because I want to help others and what happens to me is not so big in my mind. Dave Duell really taught that to me, that’s how he lived and he inspired me to do the same.
Sadly, I have also met ministers not like Dave, and they only do good to furnish their pockets or get a better tax break, or make a show. A lot of people do good for show. We need to not just do things for others but genuinely love them.
It is no wonder that things are happened that are destructive, as people do not really care for others. But we have the spirit of Jesus inside us and four books about Jesus that should lead us to a better place. Look what Paul says in Philippians 2:
4 Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.
5 You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.
We need to have the attitude Christ had – take an interest in others. Right now, think about something you want, and try to think about how to get it to someone else. Think about something in your life you are grateful for and try and get it to someone else! Think about others, take an interest in others. Deliberately plan how to be a blessing to others.
The next time you go to church, don’t think about you and what you want and what song you want and what you want the pastor to say, but think about others. What would they need? A nice welcome? Someone to take them out to lunch? Someone might need a baby sitter in the week, someone might need someone to come round and mow their lawn, your pastor might need to hear your testimony, the usher might need a big thank you from you. Have a think about it, show some interest in others.