Self-pity and selfishness are all cunning schemes used by Satan to ensnare humanity; those God created for His glory. Self-pity and self-focus are the natural state of fallen mankind. They are woven into the very fabric of our conscience, through the constant bombardment of self-importance that people are fed while viewing and listening to in the media. People’s emotions are trained by what they have seen in advertisements andwitness through peer pressure. This have cultivate a craving for things and creates a since of lack or failure when they do not have these possessions. But, God has told us to be thankful in all circumstances knowing this is God’s will for our lives.
Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.
1 Thessalonians 5:15-18 See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
Whenever the problem is centered around something concerning self, or if the explanation of the troubles are flooded with the words “me, my or I” , then the focus is on self andone’s self-importance which are character traits of Satan. The deception is to get people to indulge in self-pity and to turn their focus from God while they elevate their importance in their own eyes. The enemy would rather have people focusing on their problems and not their God. The word tells us to show the love of God when we have been wronged because love is patient, kind and is not arrogant or puffed up.
Isaiah 14:12-15 “How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground, Youwho weakened the nations! For you have said in your heart:
‘I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; I will also sit on the mount of the congregationOn the farthest sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, I will be like the Most High.’ Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, To the lowest depths of the Pit.
1 Corinthians 13:4-7 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Self-pity may sound as though it is directed toward one’s self but it is actually an emotion that is targeted toward others. Self-pity is when a person is feeling sorry for themselves, theirtroubles and they are preoccupied with themselves, but their goal is to attract attention or empathy from others for attention or some other benefit. Self-pity reveals itself in the form of questions as; why me, why did this happen to me, or why am I always so unlucky? It is natural fallen state to feel self-pity but the continued focus on self will only pull people down into more misery. We are called to transform our lives from this fallen world system to that of God’s ways and our new citizenship in the kingdom of God. We are to renew our mindsand to change the way we think.
Romans 12:2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
Everyone in this fallen world was born with an ego, a sense of self-importance and with thoughts of their rights and how they should be treated. When people are not treated as they believed they should be, then they tend to fall into self-pity, whichcauses them to focus on their hurts. Some people want to decide how their lives should go and how they should be treated and they want to become rulers of the providence over their lives and others. In doing this they are refusing to acknowledge God and His sovereign reign over all creation. This cultivates an ungrateful and thankless attitude towards God and His plans for their lives. Followers of Christ are called to walk according to the Spirit of God and not in the ways of this world.
Galatians 5:16-17 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish.
Many Christians, in their lack of understanding of God’s word, will feed into this pandemonium and uproar of self-pity and despair in others, thinking they are doing the right thing. Theytend to feed those who are in this pit of self-pity a continuous diet of validations, agreeing that these things should not have happened and also feeding their self-pity. Some will even add confusion by questioning, why did this happen, or why is life so unfair, while making a reference or implying that God seems to be unjust. Though it may not actually be verbalized, it is the unspoken consensus that somehow God allowed these injustices and cruelties to happen and somehow God was not fair. Rather than taking a stand on the word of God, the faithfulness of God and His love.
Philippians 2:13-15 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure. Do all things without complaining and disputing, that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without fault in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world,
We are told we would have tribulations in this world and people would persecute us, we are told to not be weary in well doing because God is faithful and a rewarder to those who diligently seek Him. We can refuse to indulge in our sinful, human nature of self-pity and choose to have a thankful and grateful heart, trusting in God and His love for us. We may never be able to see God’s providential way in our circumstances but true followers of Christ must hold fast to their faith in His word and the proof of His love that He displayed toward us in the life, death and resurrection of Christ.
Romans 5:8-10 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For if when we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.
Changing our thoughts and actions to line up with God’s word is a challenge for all true followers of Christ and can only be done by the power of the Holy Spirit and faith in God’s word. We are told we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us and if we are suffering we are to pray to God and give Him thanks for who He is and what He is doing in our lives.
Philippians 4:12-13 I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
James 1:2-4 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
James 4:7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.
We are called to be dead to the things of this world and alive to those things that are important to God. Nothing is more precious to God than the souls of mankind. When the people offended Jesus, His disciples wanted to call fire from heaven on them, but Jesus told His disciples that they did not understand what manner of Spirit they were of. God’s wrath has been satisfied in the death of Jesus that His mercy and love can be extended to all humanity. As followers of Christ, we are to stand in the gap for those who are lost, love those that hate us and pray for those who misuse us. By showing the love themwill know we are of God.
Luke 9:55 But they did not receive Him, because His face was set for the journey to Jerusalem. And when His disciples James and John saw this, they said, “Lord, do You want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them, just as Elijah did?” But He turned and rebuked them, and said, “You do not know what manner of spirit you are of. For the Son of Man did not come to destroy men’s lives but to save them.” And they went to another village.
The way to live this life with joy, peace and love is to die to self, self-centeredness, pride and self-importance. A dead man is not concerned with what you do or say to him or how you treat him because he is dead and will not respond to those evil and hurtful things. True followers of Christ are called to be crucified with Him, no longer living for self or for self-importance but by faith in the love God has for us and to pray for those who persecute us.
Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.