The other day, my husband and I were in the post office using the self-serve package kiosk. The line was out the door, and you could tell people had been waiting a long time. As we finished our transaction, an older woman walked through the door and headed up to the counter. A man about halfway up the line said, “Excuse me ma’am, but we have all been waiting in line for a while. It’s not okay for you to cut in front of everyone.”
The woman defected his remark by saying she just had a question. She turned from the people in the line and marched right up to the counter. After she finished, she stated, “Boy, people sure are grouchy today.”
Her comment was an attempt to transfer her disrespectful words and actions onto her victims by stating, “they” had a grouchy attitude. She chose to disrespect everyone in line and not take responsibility for her words and actions. If the situation were reversed, how do you think the woman would have treated him?
The “I” Sickness
There is an “I” sickness in our society today. In fact, it has been around for a long time. The symptoms of this sickness are the following.
- No thought or regard for anyone over yourself.
- An entitled attitude, words, and actions demanding that you are more important than others.
- Disrespecting, dishonoring, and devaluing others to get your way.
- Excusing or deflecting any responsibility or accountability as the fault of the people they are victimizing.
- Blatantly manipulating, coercing, or abusing others with words or actions and laughing it off.
Our Flesh Driven Arguments
- The argument that we have the right to say and do anything we want is a lie if we are going to live in a community with respect, honor, responsibility, and morals. This truth is especially true for the disciples of Jesus Christ. None of the “I” sickness attitudes, words, or actions honor the sacrifice Jesus paid for us. They all break the two greatest commandments, so stop doing them.
- The argument that we don’t need someone telling us what to say or do is also a lie. If people, in general, would all do the right thing, then we wouldn’t need laws about stealing, indecent exposure, rape, murder, abuse, lying, and speeding. Although we may have Jesus living in us, we must learn to live in his ways and overcome the desires and temptations to act like the devil. God knew our human condition and how we needed guidelines and healthy boundaries. He gave us the 10 Commandments to help us.
- The argument “that’s just the way we are” as disciples of Christ is an excuse to keep living in our old sinful flesh behaviors. As Christ-followers, we are his disciples and children of God. Our old ways need to be retrained through our personal relationship with Jesus, so we share his love and hope. If we say that we are Christ-followers, then we need to speak and act like him.
God’s Truth About Our Actions
The principle of the golden rule is also seen in the scripture of reaping and sowing. “Don’t be misled; remember that you can’t ignore God and get away with it: a man will always reap just the kind of crop he sows! If he sows to please his own wrong desires, he will be planting seeds of evil and he will surely reap a harvest of spiritual decay and death; but if he plants the good things of the Spirit, he will reap the everlasting life that the Holy Spirit gives him. And let us not get tired of doing what is right, for after a while we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t get discouraged and give up. That’s why whenever we can we should always be kind to everyone, and especially to our Christian brothers.” (Gal. 6:7-10, TLB)
Jesus gave us this rule to live by so we could love others as he loves us. He knew that in our sinful human condition, we must learn to love others in his respect and love. Because of our sinful flesh condition, we struggle to silence our sinful desires and the enemy’s whispers. The whispers telling us that we have the right and entitlement to do what we want even if we disrespect or mistreat others. We must choose what we believe, think, say, and do to love others as we love ourselves when we are disciples of Christ.
Love God and Love Others as Ourselves
We must walk hand in hand with Jesus so he can transform us into his likeness in our imperfect condition. In him, we can live in God’s greatest commandments. In him, we will thrive in his healthy boundary the world calls the golden rule.
“Do to others as you would have them do to you.” (Luke 6:31, NIV)
This week I want to encourage you to keep our walk with Jesus simple by following the two greatest commandments. This new song, Love God Love People, by Danny Gokey, is a great start. https://youtu.be/t-29WLQ3trA
To understand more about how you can live in Christ’s love, sign up to receive the launch date for the book and workbook of Quest for Exceptional Love, Transform your love and relationships through Christ’s love design! These books can help you discover and eliminate the lies you have believed about love by learning to walk with Jesus in his love design.