Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 5or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.
1 Corinthians 13:4-5
Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves.
Don’t be concerned for your own good but for the good of others.
1 Corinthians 10:24
The generous will prosper;
those who refresh others will themselves be refreshed.
It took me a long time to admit that I was being selfish in my marriage. Let me say that a different way. I knew that I was being selfish, I just did not want to admit it. I wanted to see myself as a generous, thoughtful person who would never be selfish to my spouse, but that was not always true. In the early years of our marriage, my selfishness was probably rooted in my immaturity. Nancy and I were married so young that a lot of our growing up years were done together within our marriage relationship.
Some of my selfishness was subtle and some was overt. Both hurt my marriage. Some of the most selfish things that I did occurred when I would point the finger at Nancy and accuse her of doing the exact thing that I was doing. Selfishness can play out in some very strange ways. Finally, I had an amazing revelation. The marriage that I wanted for us was not happening and if something was going to be different, it had to begin with me.
God showed me such grace and mercy as He brought my selfish lifestyle to light. He showed me that I was not putting Him first and if I did things would change. That was an understatement. Putting God first in my life turned everything upside down but then everything landed where it was supposed to be. My life was better. My marriage was better. My relationship with Him was amazing.
Can I still slip into selfishness? Yes, but because I now know the difference He can make, I am much quicker to fall on my knees and give it back to Him.
1. When do you find yourself out of balance with God?
2. Think about the times you can be selfish in your marriage. How would those times look different if you were “into God” instead of “into yourself”?
3. What is one way you can begin to fight together as a couple?
What steps can you take to never give selfishness a foothold in your marriage?