A Prayer: When I Think Of Others

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Okay God, let’s be honest. I’m pretty damn self-righteous. (I don’t use that word lightly, just as you never shied away from condemning the Pharisees.)

When I think of others, I do not think of them as you do. Rather, I measure them against myself: are they as smart as I? athletic? attractive? gifted? and- ironically- humble? And not just with good traits goes the other way too: are they hurting like I am? do they have my scars, my fears, my insecurities? do they doubt their faith, doubt themselves, doubt you, as much as I? or am I the only one with these kinds of unending thoughts racing, running bouncing and smashing against the inside of my psyche? My insecurity dominates my ability to see your children as anything other than competition for your approval.

I think of others, dear God, because I do not want to be alone- which is not bad- but I wish to be with other people just so long as I am above them.

I ask that you save me from the siren’s call of mirrors, report cards, earning statements, 5k results, blog views, ‘like’ notifications and looks of admiration from others. Save me from the condemnation of insecurity, the anxiety of gaining others’ approval, the facade of humility that masks deep disbelief in the power of your gospel.

When I think of others, help me to think of them as sisters and brothers:to think of the least of these (literally & metaphorically) as higher than me. When I think of myself, create in me a humble heart that thinks only of myself as one who needs and receives grace. Apart from this- please, God, please– aid me in training myself instead to think of you.

Amen.

 

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