The Tragedy of a Self-Centered Life

A self-centered life is not just one in which we simply put ourselves first, but one in which God is eclipsed by our own stardom. When we see ourselves as the main character in our story, the great protagonist in our decades-long drama, we are at best relegating God to a supporting role whose influence is minimal. We have taught, and been taught, that everyone is special and unique. After all, there is only one me, and this is my life. The reality is that our lives aren't even about us. God is both the author and the central character of our story, for our stories are but a part of his. As Christians we do not live or work for ourselves, or for any other person in this world. We have been created, and put where we are, for the glory of the One who made us in his image, redeemed us from sin through his Son, united us as one family in his church, and through the church sends us into the world to make disciples of all people. Yes, there is only one me, but I exist for Another. I am the supporting cast member in the divine drama. I am an individual, but I am not only an individual. As a human being I am a part of the world, and bear God's image as well as the mark of sin with everyone else. As a Christian I am a part of the body of Christ, and have been adopted with everyone else who has been born of God. I am one, but I am not alone.

The tragedy of a self-centered life is that in centering on ourselves we ultimately wind up alone; isolated from others and God. Even if we have many possession, friends, and prestige, by exalting ourselves to the highest point possible we have no one else to look to for help, because we allow for no peers. No one is beside us for genuine fellowship. Even worse, there is no God above us in whom we find our redemption, purpose, and identity.