Tidbits and Blessings Blog
by Jeanie Malone
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Jesus gave us two commandments—to love God with all our heart, soul, and strength and to love others as ourselves. The focus is not on loving ourselves well or putting our needs and wants first. Yet somehow, we have twisted His words into our own theology better termed as me-ology. Our thinking and decisions, our priorities, how we view and behave in our relationships, and how we steward our blessings is centered around what we want—our creature comforts that feed our fleshly desires.
Occasionally, I turn on our local contemporary Christian radio station in my car. Yesterday as I listened for the first time in a while, I remembered why it had been a while since I turned it on. My stomach turned and my soul sank as I listened to the words of the songs and advertisements.
Almost every song and mini encouragement from the DJs was steeped in me-ology. Apparently, we cannot even worship God simply for who He is without basing our worship on what we want or expect from Him in return. We act like God needs us and not the other way around.
Every commercial break featured a lengthy commercial from a plastic surgeon specializing in breast enhancement. The words of the ad get you to visualize swimsuit season and suggest that as a woman, you must be dreading summer because your breasts won’t look as you’d like in that swimsuit top. Oh my, do I even need to list all that’s wrong with this? I am all for a healthy body, but I am not all for body image focus or saturation. We should seek to be healthy as good stewards of the body God gives us which is the only one we will have to do His will as His hands and feet on earth.
With Mother’s Day just a few days away, there was an ad for a contest in which women were encouraged to nominate themselves as the most deserving mom of a goodie basket of beauty supplies to be given away. Yes, women were encouraged to write an essay on why they are the best mom and most deserving of the prize basket. I understand nominating someone else, which was also an option, but that women were encouraged to nominate and brag (and likely embellish) on their own mothering is nauseating. The next likely downfall in nominating a mother for a gift basket will be for men to nominate themselves as mothers.
Our society is way off track, and the only way to get on the right track is to focus on and continually seek God. As long as we focus on ourselves, we will fall farther into the pit of sin. Individuals can make a huge impact on society, and it’s time we look at what God says and do what will bring Him honor instead of glorifying ourselves. It’s time for us to learn and live by true theology instead of me-ology. If you need clarification on what is me-ology, this brief blog post written by concerned pastor, Harold J. Miller, is an excellent resource.
This Nigerian website gives ten scriptures about being humble. It includes 1 Peter 5:6 which says, “Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:” Many people love this verse as they focus on being exalted by God. Sadly, those folks miss the point entirely. The entire chapter of 1 Peter 5 is about humility. Looking at this entire letter from Peter, we see that he was writing to Christians living as aliens in a land where they stood out and endured unjust persecution. He emphasized for them to exercise brotherly love, charity, hospitality, and perseverance. Their focus was the love of Christ, not what He could do for them. They lived the truth in submission and full belief. They lived the truth for its own sake, not for selfish gain.
I think our me-ology culture is in part shaped by our desire to be self-sufficient. It goes back to the garden of Eden. We won’t go in depth right now, but simply put Eve wanted to be like God. Adam and Eve depended on God for everything. If Eve was like God, she wouldn’t need to depend solely on God. We have inherited that god complex in our desire to be self-sufficient. As we seek to depend less on God, we seek to perfect ourselves. Ironically the more we focus on self-improvement, the worse mess we become as we drift farther away from the God who made and loves us and is the only One who can complete us.
You are enough—quite possibly the biggest lie known to man. We know deep down that we are not enough. That’s why we keep digging and seeking for more, because we know that alone, we are not enough.
It is finished—absolutely the powerful truth ignored by most. Jesus Christ said, “It is finished,” with His last breath as a man. It was so powerful that He ensured it was heard before He died on the cross where He laid our struggles to rest. He took our shame and bore our grief; He was beaten and mocked, willingly, that we would have hope. Often, we ignore that hope, and we ignore His sacrifice. We mock and abuse Him again and again as we live outside of the powerful truth of “It is finished.”
We desperately seek something to make us whole while we ignore the One who paid the price and made a way. Does it seem too far-fetched that God would or could come as a man to reconcile us to Himself? Does it seem too simple or maybe way too complicated? Do we find it hard to believe because we can’t quite grasp why anyone would do such a thing? Do we write it off as an ancient tale while we seek some other enlightenment? Do we think we will find the truth digging deep into our own sinful hearts? Do we think we will connect with God in some other way?
Jesus Christ is the only reconciliation between God and man; besides Him there is no way. He is the way, the truth, and the light. He is the peace we seek. He is the power over sin that we seek. He is the one true God. Without Him we are lost. With Him, we are at one with God.
He is the center of the Gospel, the good news of truth; we are not. We are made to worship Him and not ourselves or another. Each person who lives truth lives Christ-centered, not self-centered.
Here are some actions for you to move closer to God and away from me-ology:
I'm tired of running from God and am trying to learn to run to Him instead.