A few of the verses we studied in our women's bible study this week really got me thinking.
Or maybe I should say, caused me to reflect a bit more.
The end of all things is at hand; therefore be self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers. Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
1 Peter 4:7-11
I immediately thought, well self-controlled isn't something I'm good at during the school year. My patience runs thin, and I can only take so much before fully speaking my mind. It's something I have to pray about all the time.
As if that wasn't enough for me.. show hospitality.
I'm a recluse by nature.
I like to be alone and am quick to go home after an event and not hang out with people. Jeremy has been really good about getting me out of that and dragging my out the door.
I end up having fun, but I just long for the darkness and quiet of my bed.
It's funny that it's this way actually and not the other, Jeremy is much more reserved than I am, I tend to speak out more. When we are out I'm social, while he sits quietly for the most part. To look at us you would think I had no problem with hospitality.
Truly it looks like I don't, but I really do.
It's not a matter of actions for me, it's my thought pattern. I mentally grumble.
On Friday's I do everything thing I can to prevent seeing people or participating in any activity. Jeremy always drags me out, and I spend the whole time trying to make sure we don't stay out too late, I need my sleep.
I always end up going along, and having fun, but the mental part of that is that I have grumbling thoughts about be hospitably to others, spending time with people, or doing anything for that matter that cuts into "my time"
It could be a problem, but I really think God set me up with a man who had a totally opposite personality as a means to break me of a few habits I could afford to lose.
My need to be a hermit being one of them.
Like the verses at the beginning of this post say, we've all received a gift.
What is your gift though?
I actually do get a lot of joy out of serving others, even if it is just helping an older man at Wal-Mart find tin foil. I walk away with a feeling that I helped someone, and it's a joy no one can take away.
Where I get joy out of helping others, and even having people over and cooking for them and just hanging out, my selfish tendencies can ruin that and allow me to think that I deserve alone time.
I put myself first.
Putting myself first does nothing for my joy. I leave the comfort of my bed with the same to-do list I had before, and the same mood I walked in with.
However, when I'm actually serving God, at church or just being helpful to someone else, I walk away with the same to-do list I had before... but with a sense of peace and joy I could not have gained wallowing in my "me time."
So the next Friday night, or any night for that matter, that I want to be alone and "do nothing" I need to think back to these verses and remember what my purpose is.
To serve and show Christ to others the best I can.
What are some of the selfish tendencies you struggle with?