BY STEVE DUNN
Several months ago my wife had a close call. Traveling home from work on the interstate, she was in the left lane preparing to pass a vehicle ahead on her right. Suddenly she found an eighteen-wheeler who had pulled up on her right attempting to pass her. She was not traveling slowly and the truck was at an even higher rate of speed. When she did not slow down to let him in, he accelerated and proceeded to push his way into the space in front her that was barely enough to squeeze in a passenger car. If she had not been alert there could have been a very bad accident caused by a truck driver who was in too much of a hurry.
My wife arrived home shaken and frankly, I was angry. I have seen too much of that kind of driving on the highway where drivers who are breaking the speed limit already aggressively weave in and out of traffic with utter disregard for the safety of the others sharing the roadway with them.
The dangers of such high speed driving are well documented. In this case the aggressive driving at high speed by this trucker created an even greater danger. From my perspective, however, the deeper problem was the self-centeredness of the driver was and is the deeper problem. He was going to do what he wanted to do and everyone else had to live with it.
Jesus had some pointed words about self-centeredness. “Whoever tries to keep their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life will preserve it.” (Luke 17.33) When we try to control our lives and circumstances so that we always win, so that someone else pays the price for our convenience and desires; we will ultimately lose.
Why, because this is neither the desire nor the plan of our Creator. Self-centeredness in the Bible is equated replacing God’s will with our egos. There is no room for self-centeredness in our lives. God has designed us to serve others, to love our neighbors as ourselves. Paul’s words reinforce that: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others” -Philippians 2.3-4
God created us and redeemed us to reflect Christ in the world. Dietrich Bonhoeffer called Jesus as a “man for others.”
It’s time to slow down, abandon our mad pursuit of our own desires–and be the person God desires us to be.
© 2019 by Stephen L. Dunn. You have permission to reprint this provided it is unchanged, proper authorship is cited, it is in a publication not for sale, and a link is provided to this site or to http://www.drstevedunn.com. For all other uses, contact Steve at email@example.com