“Greater love has no one,” said Jesus in John 15:13, “than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.” He was speaking of the immense power of putting others before yourself.
This is a challenging concept for us in our modern world. Sure, there are some occupations that require selflessness and we all occasionally put others first. Yet, we wake up in a body every day that immediate and unconsciously screams, “Me, me, me.” They tell us we have an ego that exists for no other reason than to ensure the survival of self. From pillow to pillow, our egos and our bodies are marketed to in a way that could almost make you forget anything beyond your immediate self-gratification.
Service before self requires conscious effort. It requires ceasing all that self-noise, recognizing the needs of those around you, and serving them.
Jesus gave the extreme example in that verse. There are a million little ways you can put others before you all day long. Volunteer to help build a house. Let someone cut in line. Give the homeless person five dollars. Make sure your family eats before you. Let your spouse choose the movie.
A few weeks ago I wrote a post about the positivity I see the presidential campaigns of Marianne Williamson and Tulsi Gabbard. Rep. Gabbard is a veteran of two overseas deployments. She enlisted after 9/11 and continues to serve as a Major in the Hawaii National Guard. She’s speaking eloquently on the campaign trail about bringing a servant’s heart to the task of making the changes so many of us want to see in our world. She’s made it a centerpiece of her message and her campaign. It’s one of the reasons I view her so favorably.
Can you imagine consciously building a country, a world, or our lives around such a noble principle? What kind of ripple effect could we affect?
Am I suggesting you give up your own dreams and aspirations and make them subservient to the needs of others? No way! You are here, as we’ve discussed so many times on this blog, to achieve amazing things in your own right.
What I’m talking about is finding a balance between that “Me, me, me” you wake up to each morning and the needs of the world around you. I’m saying make it a point to daily and proactively put someone else’s needs, someone else’s concerns front and center.
Power Hack: Every single one of us has the impulse to do these things – give up the seat on the train, give the homeless person five bucks, etc. It’s only ego and fearful thinking that there’s not enough or I’ll get taken advantage of that stops you. Release those thoughts and feelings and act!
Though it seems counterintuitive, putting others before you just may be the wave that pushes your dreams all the way to shore. This clip probably requires no introduction to to most of you. Yeah, it’s just a movie, but it’s life too. What you put out into the world comes back to you. It’s the oldest rule in the book.
Stay inspired, my friends, and thank you so much for taking valuable time out of your day to read the blog!