Have you ever encountered someone who becomes so passionate about a particular cause, that at some point, they make it not about the people they want to help, but about themselves? You probably have, as its all too common.
I have known and worked with people who got involved with a particular issue or cause and watched as little-by-little, they moved themselves into the center of attention — it becomes more about how much they care, how much work they’re doing, how much they’re contributing and less about the main focus of the cause itself. Sadly, when this starts to happen, the culprits of this attention hijacking often start to tear down others — “you don’t understand because I….” “if you did as much as I did…” “if you knew how much I cared…” They increasingly move away from “we” and “they” and instead, use the words “I” and “me” in almost every breath.
I don’t know why certain people do this, but it may be that they have low self-esteem or crave to be liked, but what ever the reasons, it can be quite off-putting. After all, if one is volunteering for a charity or trying to right an injustice, its really more about the people needing the help, than it is the people giving the help, isn’t it?
I came across this meme on social media and it had quickly gained a lot of views and likes:
Reverend Cremer makes an excellent point. The world seems to be brimming with the self-righteous and the pious, all claiming to be the defining authority on spiritual matters — and disturbingly, many are quick to ignore the log in their own eye, as they condemn their neighbor for the speck in his.
“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” – Matthew 7:3-5
In the same regard as people making their “good works” about themself and not the people needing the help, some Christians become so enamored with themselves and so convinced of their own piety, that in effect, they make it all about themselves. They claim to “follow Jesus,” yet they live and act in complete opposition to His teachings. They boast how much they love God and are “doing His work,” yet they live in complete hypocrisy — whether these “Christians” know it or not, God is actually not reliant upon us, but it is we who are reliant upon Him.
I know that most Christians are good, loving people and it is those faithful that are of purer heart. We’re all sinners and as such, not one single one of us…not one…can or should judge others harshly. After all, as Jesus said, “He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone at her.” And as we know, not one of them could cast that stone.
My intention is not to come across as preachy and judgy, but rather, it’s to shine a light upon people who sit in judgement of others. Christians are called upon to be kind, loving and generous. It is expected that we behave and live as Jesus teaches us and it is expected that we remain humble, like little children. The pious and self-righteous among us would do well to remember that in truth, they are falsely using God’s name as their cover for their personal hatreds.
Those Christians who lead from a place of love, compassion, generosity and forgiveness, are the light in our sometimes dark world and we should encourage and uplift each other to make that light shine brighter.
“The Lord Almighty planned it, to bring low the pride of all glory and to humble all who are renowned on the earth.” – Isaiah 23:9