I recently heard about a speech the CEO of Chick-Fil-a gave at a college graduation. After providing key insights and encouragement, Dan Cathy told the students he was going to give them something that would change their life. Everyone waited with great anticipation. Mr. Cathy then asked the college president to stand and as he did, Mr. Cathy stooped down to begin polishing the president’s shoes with a shoe brush. When done, Mr. Cathy stood and raised the brush for all to see. “This gift will change your life,” he said. “For may this simple brush serve to remind you what your purpose and place is in this world. To serve others, over self.”
This story stands out to me as a great illustration and reminder as to the competing “true love(s)” we encounter each day:
Stuff: Admittedly, there are times I get distracted and begin longing for more. But then I remember the verse that says, “whoever loves money never has enough and is never satisfied with his income“. This jolts me back to recheck my priorities and my heart’s desires. Has money become my true love? May it never be – this caught and tripped me up once before and by God’s grace may it never again. For when Christ is first and foremost, we discover the miraculous peace and contentment only He can provide.
Self: When I want more, it’s because I’m focusing too much on me. This again once tripped me up. For I was busy building my kingdom and expanding my influence. We see this often when we get preoccupied with our titles, trophies and treasures. Again, none of these things are bad, but when they become a priority they do become dangerous and burdens to our Christian walk.
Savior: Obviously, for Christians, our true love should always be Jesus Christ. For through Him all good things flow, and when He is first, all our other needs fall into place. He knows what we need and He will work through us in miraculous ways when we have hearts of integrity – undivided by any worldly devotions. As a result, we become better stewards and servants of our lives and what we have been entrusted with for the benefit of others and ultimately God’s Kingdom. This is when we experience “change” in our life.
Application: “Matthew 6:33
When God is first and foremost, we may still be tempted to replace Him with our self-interests and motivations for more, but we won’t succumb to them. For He can be trusted to provide for all our needs and desires and when we surrender to Him He provides the true abundant life nothing on this world can match.