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Humility's Elevator

Staff Member
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, Philippians 2:3

We can find a kernel of cynicism in some of the good news we read. Consider this story: A little girl takes the meal she’s ordered at a restaurant and gives it to a homeless man on the street outside. It’s a beautiful story that gets a little cloudy when her father follows her outside with his phone camera, capturing the moment and then uploading it to social media where it’s shared repeatedly. Cynicism judges the motive of the father and the potential misuse of a child’s good deed. It questions where the idea originated or whether this was a staged event.

Cynicism only sees what it wants to believe. However, cynicism can’t get behind the outward gaze of the little girl who interacted with someone who had no ability to repay her. It doesn’t take into account how this interaction may impact her life going forward.

If we reconstruct today’s verse, it might read: “Motives associated with pride and selfish pursuits devalue others. Humility offers an opportunity for you to begin to see others with God’s vision.”

In God’s playbook, personal ambition takes a back seat to helping others when they need help. Godly wisdom never steps on others to get to a place you want to claim, never overlooks someone because of perceived differences, and never elevates self while looking down on those with needs.
love it thanks for posting brother !!

Nick what are you thoughts on ambition verse selfish ambition?? or should I say what would be some differences that could be spotted between the two?
Staff Member
Nick what are you thoughts on ambition verse selfish ambition?? or should I say what would be some differences that could be spotted between the two?
Hello Dear Brother Dave,

Now as far as Ambition verses Selfish Ambition. I'm sure you know that one is for and includes Christ, while the other does not.
Remember what you're asking in truth is how can we tell what has motivated the "works" of another to produce the abundance we see. What is that which is motivating a person?
Can we look inside each others heart to see what motivates ones actions? No, so we don't entirely judge another for why they do, but we can surely be honest with ourselves to know what motivates us. Is it gain for the purpose of gain, that we know satisfies self-interest or man? Gain, that we might please God and in so doing have joy?

And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, Colossians 3:23

Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31

For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I still pleased men, I would not be a bondservant of Christ. Galatians 1:10

But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
Hebrews 13:16

We can see the works of people without Christ in their lives and see benefit derived from them, while with those in Christ the fruits might not be as apparent. We can't be fooled by this, for which of us can see the end results of what we do, who we touch in life? Still, I also realize that we are a people who like to compare ourselves against others. Even the Apostles did that in trying to figure out who of them was greater! One thing I can tell you that is evident in those who reflect the love of Jesus. They are servants, and servants who don't gripe, or complain about what they're doing, but truly reflect the joy of being allowed to serve! I'm not saying we don't all have some good/bad days! :)

So, if I were to answer your question of how to spot the difference. I'd say do they show the love of the Lord even while serving, do you have to go find them in order to serve, or do you see them volunteering to help, when there is no perceivable gain. This also include those in leadership positions and how they treat those who are subordinate to themselves. This doesn't mean this is a catch all, because sometimes, a gentle reminder to the leader on how they are treating others, if servant's heart they have, will be appreciated and normally reflect a positive change. At times it can be harder to lead than it is to follow, being a servant to all.

I hope I was able to break it down a little further for you Dear Brother and that all is going well with you & yours.

With the Love of Christ Jesus.
Hey Nick

thanks for taking the time to write all that very insightful.

I would like to add, that to me this also is the reason Jesus tells us to give in secrete and to pray in secrete
Matthew 6:1-4

, so we don't even tempt our selves to becoming prideful which can lead to and is similar to selfish ambition giving so we are seen by others so we are thought highly of by others, we must only be concerned about what God thinks, this is way harder then it sounds .

I get worried myself sometime if I want to get good at something and start comparing myself to others this might lead me to pride (selfish ambition), so I am looking for ways to detect pride or selfish ambition early on before it takes hold.
I know one way is to not talk about myslef, not brag, give the credit to God for my improvements in what ever it is at the time being thankful and content is big part of this also.
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