Do you enjoy celebrating birthdays and different anniversaries or would you rather not? Would you rather just keep calm and keep on doing your own thing? It is easy to get so caught up in our own routines that we forget to enjoy life and appreciate people around us? How could we remedy that? And how could we embrace life – and complications that come with it- with gusto? The most unlikely Bible verse helps me to do this. And in some ways, it is my approach to living well.
If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care— then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends. Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead. Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand. (Phil.2:1-4, MSG, emphasis added,*)
or the last two verses from the Amplified Bible:
Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit [through factional motives, or strife], but with [an attitude of] humility [being neither arrogant nor self-righteous], regard others as more important than yourselves. Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. (Phil. 2:3-4, AMP, emphasis added,*)
My approach to living well
I have chosen to care, hence I try to live out my faith as much as I am able to do so. The more grace-filled I am, the better this works. So if I am not able to do this, it is only because I have tried to manage on my own. My approach to living well is to be spirit-filled in order to pass on grace upon grace because this truly changes everything. Because it spreads love into my relationships, it gives me the energy to serve others, and it shows me life is a gift to be cherished and celebrated.
The mindset behind my approach to living well is this: I try to regard every person I ever meet as more important than myself [remember: I’m only able to do this because God takes care of my needs of love and appreciation and I don’t need it from other people]. So I try to put myself aside and love and serve others like God has loved and served me. It’s not easy and I fail regularly. But whenever I remember this, blessings follow. This is especially beneficial when dealing with difficult relationships. When you’re filled with God’s energizing love and sustaining grace, you’re able to love those who tend to wrench your soul.
It is also helpful to have an attitude of humility when we meet people from other churches or political parties. When we think of others as better than ourselves, we open ourselves for truly connecting with others. No human being knows everything about everything. And this is especially true in faith matters. Sure, we try our best to follow Jesus the best we know how but at the end of the day, no one of us does it perfectly. Thankfully God loves us anyway.
Let us pray
Thank you for wanting to connect with each of us personally
and want us to do the same with others.
Help us to care and act on our beliefs.
Grant us an attitude of humility to show respect to people we meet.
Fill us with your love and grace and enable us to pass them on to others.
Show us how to embrace life – and its complications – with gusto.
In Jesus’ name,
Q4U: What’s your approach to living well?
Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you learn to deal with life’s events and complications with an extra dose of grace!
*[As you might have noticed, I enjoy reading the Bible in different translations and love comparing them. I have started linking the Bible verses toBiblegateway.com so you can easily read (and compare) them in the different versions I’ve used while preparing each post.].