Within our generation I'm constantly seeing people leave friendships, relationships, jobs, churches, using the phrase, "I'ma do me."
This is usually a way of saying "Right now, I just want to do what I feel like is best for me without regard for how that might affect you, because what I want to do for myself is more important than you are."
We live in one of the most selfish and self-centered generations. A Generation who has popularized taking photos of ourselves, a generation that has popularized obsessively trying to get people to follow us, trying to build self-importance, a generation that has taken self-care to another level.
But scripture gives us a different way to live,
Philippians 2:4 says, "Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
1 Corinthians 10:24 says, "No one should seek their own good, but the good of others"
Even more radically, James 3:14-16 says, "But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice."
God calls selfish ambition unspiritual, evil and demonic! That seems so extreme. But a pattern of selfishness has the ability to wreak complete havoc on a friendship, relationship, marriage, workplace and society.
Just about every sin and social ill we can think of society is rooted in selfishness. This motto that we have been living by is evil at its core. It has to be thrown in the trash. Nothing is wrong with considering what may be the best decision for your health, well-being. But there is absolutely something wrong when we do not also consider how our actions deeply affect those around us.
I'll give you examples of a healthy decision for one's self and a destructive choice for one's self .
If I were in a friendship or relationship that led me into sin such as (fornication, a friend leads me into worldliness) then I would be doing good thing, by walking away from that friendship/relationship. Why? Because I'm not leaving them for me, but rather to honor God by obeying his word (2 Corinthians 6:14-16, 1 Corinthians 6:18-20)
However, if I were in a marriage or even a member of a church, and I decide to leave because my spouse or church isn't serving me to the degree that I would like them to, then this is self-serving. Why? Because my focus is on myself without considering a multiplicity of factors: That marriage's goal is not to be served, but to serve, not to be happy, but to be holy, with happiness being a byproduct of us growing closer to God and our spouse. That church is meant to expand the kingdom of God as we each serve Christ and each other, encouraging one another, delivering the gospel to others, and it is not meant to merely be a social club for believers. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7, Scriptures on Divorce, Scriptures on The Purpose of the Church.)
Readers, I promise that my intent is not to condemn those who have gone through a divorce or who have left a church. There are a multitude of reasons that may cause a person to leave a marriage or a church, there are right and holy reasons for some of those reasons (you may have attended a church that is not accurately teaching the word of God, you may have attended a church that was full of spiritually abusive tactics, you moved away, got married and decided to join your spouse's church, the Lord truly led you to another body, so that you may serve there). The reasons can be endless. You may have had to separate from a spouse due to infidelity or abuse. Each of these examples are personal. These decisions have been heart-wrenching and extremely difficult for most. However, each person can use these scriptures and maybe even my examples to examine their own heart (it's definitely not my job to examine yours. I'm too busy examining my own selfishness and taking the log out of my own eye.).
Brothers and Sisters, let us take out the trash of selfishness and move towards holiness.