Saturday, October 2, 2010

To Me or Not To Me

The other day a student inquired about coming to CedarWood to acquire credits to graduate early. The disturbing thing about the interview was that the enrollment prospect's entire focus was her desire to graduate early and what teachers could do for her to get special individual courses and attention. There was no awareness that, as a high school student, she would be looked up to by the younger students and could contribute something significant to the school and the other students.

This caused me to reflect on how easily human nature operates in what can be called "tunnel vision." We tend to only think in terms of what we want and fail to consider others or that our life is designed to bless others. Fallen human nature thinks we are "God" and that life should revolve around us and our wants.

Jesus in the parable of the talents addresses the one who hid the one talent with the words, "You wicked and lazy servant..." Since this whole section in Matthew 24 and 25 is really talking about the end times, it becomes apparent that men will continue to regress in these choices, both to wickedness and to laziness.

Entertainment has never been so great in quality and quantity. Everything from HD video games, streaming sporting events, social networks, and a myriad of other activities which consume time and attention, there clearly are more great diversions available. Attraction to wickedness such as pornography and perversion through media options will increase in the last days, even more than now.

On the other characteristic, maybe because of all these distractions, more and more people will choose to not get really involved in any worthwhile pursuits that take whole-hearted commitment, but rather just do what they have to do to get by. An example is a student being content to get "C's" with no effort or the employee only doing the bare minimum to pick up a paycheck. Unfortunately, sin does not stand still and the laziness quality demonstrated in society will likewise grow out of proportion as we approach the end.

We can't change the world but can seek to influence it by our truth and example. Jesus has changed our heart by making us new creations "in true righteousness" (Ephesians 4:24) and has given us His power "to will and to work" for His pleasure. We do not have to be like the "Me" world. We can draw our life from the Word of God and be led by His Spirit in a daily choice to live for Him. To pick up our cross daily means to choose "Not to Me."

1 comment:

  1. Well said, Gene. Our modern conveniences mean that we generally don't need to put as much effort into providing for our families... but instead, we spend our extra time and money for fun and pleasure, instead of doing the Lord's work. We get lazy and complacent because we can. But if we get lost in the things of the world and forsake our first love, come that Glorious Day He will say, "Depart from me, ye workers of iniquity. I never knew you."

    Now as for that girl who wanted to graduate early, it sounds to me like laziness was furthest from her mind. True, she would not have had as much time to be a role model to her younger schoolmates, but again, she would be a role model for working hard to achieve one's goals.

    Why should students want to do well in school? Is it for themselves? Or is it so they can be productive members of society and provide for their families and communities. Without a good education, it is very difficult to get a good enough job to support a family, as my wife's siblings serve as constant reminder. And if you cannot provide, you become a ward of the state and spend your time trying to get by, instead of giving back to the community. But being well-to-do is no guarantee of giving back, because people's hearts are often in the things of this earth and themselves.