UV 2118/10000 Esteeming Others
Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves
Philippians 2 v 3
Our motives behind deeds and words are the root cause of conflict. We should do nothing out of envy, vanity, pride as it will provoke strife. When we submit ourselves to the control of the Holy Spirit, we become true gentle persons. We will not act with carnal wisdom to get ahead of others but wait for the Lord to lift us up as per His will. Jealousy caused Cain to commit the first crime in all of history- fratricide. Today, a fratricidal war is being fought in the Middle East. The rivalry between the world’s powers to dominate certain regions or nations leads to wars and threats of global war. Feelings of racial superiority leads to the growth of strife and oppression of minorities. This uni-verse exhorts us to respect the differences, even celebrate it without compromising on our basic beliefs and convictions about practices and lifestyle choices that are forbidden or to be discouraged.
The solution is to consider others better than ourselves and not engage in such rivalry and conflicts. We need to be careful not to develop a contentious attitude and submit to one another. We should think not only of what we would gain or lose in a particular transaction but think also of the interests of others. This is what is called a win-win relationship or partnership. Even among so called spiritual leaders and believers, we witness an unholy jealousy. Not many are willing to concede primacy of anointing or gifts or contribution to others. There is a constant jostling for claiming credit and to pass on blame in organisations everywhere. The Lord always esteems people who humble themselves. He spoke of Moses as one who is the humblest on the earth. He esteemed Daniel from the day the latter humbled himself before God. Anything that people say or do to such persons, the Lord takes personally.
Our attitude or mind should be that of Jesus for He chose to wash His disciples’ feet. We need to develop the mind set of a servant. The serpent leader tries to dominate. He is aggressive, vain, proud and arrogant. The serpent leader tries to serve and to submit. He is humble, modest, gentle, kind and focussed on serving and contributing to the greater good of people who are his constituents, colleagues, juniors and the greater glory of God. Everything we say and do is a reflection of our inner being or attitudes. Hence, we should always be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and allow Him to regularly audit and prune to make us more fruitful internally. It is natural for our sinful selves to try to get ahead of others, to be competitive, to stamp on the toes of others while trying to get ahead. But the word and the Spirit will admonish and correct us as we submit ourselves for such transformation.
Prateep V Philip