Parenting ~ Pointing out Selfishness

speck

“Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?” (Matthew 7:3 ESV)

“I’m still kind of mad at him for going on all of the rides without me,” Jonah admitted. His friend had invited us to an evening at a water park. Jonah’s cast was still on and he knew he might not be able to go on the rides. We wrapped it up, making it waterproof and he wore a shirt to cover. He was allowed to ride some of the rides but others required him to go shirtless. This was a bit disappointing, but a little is better than nothing, right?

Jonah rode the rides he was allowed and after a couple of hours was ready to go home. But he had this nagging resentment toward his friend. His friend rode all of the rides leaving Jonah behind. He reasoned, “If it were me, I would have stayed with him.” I know he probably would have. He’s thoughtful like that. Although a couple of weeks had passed, Jonah still struggled to forgive.

Jonah and I had a long talk. We talked about friendship, forgiveness and selfishness. We talked about what he expected from his friend and how unreasonable it was. And I pointed out he was being selfish. You see, Jonah considered his friend the selfish one. Jonah wanted his friend to forgo his desires and only think of him. After I explained it, Jonah got the picture. He was so consumed with his hurt feelings, he didn’t think of his friend.

No matter how old you get, the same feelings rise up in us. It goes against our grain to think of others before ourselves. It’s natural to want what we want and become angry when we don’t get it. It can turn into a pity party if we’re not careful. Self examination is important. The only one we should be comparing ourselves to is Jesus. He proved to be the ultimate Unselfish Servant. That’s what we should be striving for. If we focus on Him, we won’t have time to reach for the specks in another’s eye.

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