S (Scripture):James 4:1 What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? 2 You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. 3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.
O (Observation): Harsh words here, from James. However, he does point out the nature of our faults: looking to our own desires.
A (Application): It’s all about me! This is the world we live in…but it doesn’t have to be. As a child of God I am reminded (and I’m called to remind others) that this life is not about me, but how I can be a servant to my neighbor. First shall be last, last shall be first.
Jesus is our example and redeemer. We know what serving looks like (washing feet, feeding the hungry, etc.) and we are free from the worries of sin, so that we can go and do that service for others.
I’m serving students at Middle TNState University these days by being present and talking with them and building relationships. And I try to go for pure reasons, and not just for selfish desires. Sometimes I get it right, sometimes I don’t. In either case, Jesus promises to be present. That gives me hope.
What about you? What selfish desires have you bumped up against?
P (Prayer): Lord, clear our hearts and minds and fill them with the posture of a servant. Amen.