Published on November 26th, 2018 | by Millennium Magazine Staff0
LEARNING THE MINDSET OF CHRIST
by Taffi Dollar
Having the right attitude greatly impacts our quality of life, because it determines our relationships with others. We’ve all seen people with proud, haughty attitudes that no one wants to be around. We have a choice as to which mindset we adopt, and it’s important to choose wisely. The world may tell us to put ourselves first, but humility can take us much farther in life than pride.
Pride can cause friction, strife, and bitter arguments, and many friendships have been destroyed because of it. A humble attitude, however, can cause others to gravitate toward us and can make life sweeter. “A man’s pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit” (Proverbs 29:23). When we learn to put others first, we stay out of self-centeredness and keep contention from making us bitter and angry. Jesus Christ perfectly modeled a humble mindset; we can learn much from His example.
During His ministry, Jesus was admired by many people. He had plenty of opportunities to exalt Himself, but He chose not to. Instead, He put others first. “But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many” (Matthew 20:25-28). This way of thinking is the opposite of worldly reasoning, and it keeps us safe from pride and selfishness.
Learning to think like this may feel very strange at first if we’re not accustomed to it. We’ll most likely feel the temptation to fall back into our old, familiar way of thinking. We can’t change without God’s help. When we’re too weak to break out of our wrong-thinking, we can depend on Jesus, who did it first. “For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15, NKJV).
This doesn’t mean to become a doormat for other people; it means showing the same kind of love and respect toward others that Jesus displayed. We’re able to do this when we love and respect ourselves, first. We can love and value ourselves because Jesus loved us first. “Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another… And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us…We love him, because he first loved us” (1 John 4:10, 11, 16, 19).
Putting others’ interests before our own gives the message that we really care about them and what goes on in their lives. “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 2:3-5). This enhances our relationships and gives us a new perspective on what life is all about. When we trust God on this, we see amazing results.