Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Philippians 2:3
Boy, this is a tough one isn’t it? Esteem others better than ourselves. At first flush we may think, I have no problem with that. I know others are better than me. They are smarter than me, prettier than me, thinner than me, faster than me, younger than me, have a nicer house, a better husband, more money, a nicer car, a better job… and the list goes on and on.
When I argue with someone, I am not esteeming them as better than myself. I actually believe, in that moment, that I know better than they do.
When I complain, I believe, in that moment that my way is better.
When I criticize, I am setting myself up as judge believing, in that moment, that their way is not as good as my way.
When I gossip, I am making a statement that that person chose a wrong way and that my opinion is right.
When I have to “make my point” I believe that my opinion matters and that my way is better.
When I interrupt, I believe in that moment that what I have to say is more important that what you have to say.
Do you see the subtle ways our high opinion of self flies in the face of “esteeming others better than ourselves?”
Oh, Lord, grant that we can see how YOU see pride in our hearts. Teach us, show us how with lowliness of mind, we can esteem others as better than ourselves. Lord, may we have genuine humility that You manifest through us.
Diane Hunt is a Biblical Counselor, Women’s conference and retreat speaker and author. She serves as the Director of Partner Care and Director of Women’s Ministries at America’s Keswick. She and her husband John have two married children and four grandchildren. She loves reveling in warm sunny climates and playing with her grandchildren.