“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.” — Philippians 2:3-4
Have you ever thrown a rock into a perfectly calm pond or lake? After the rock breaks the surface of the water, the ripples move outward and seem to go on forever.
Many of the decisions we make in this life have the same kind of ripple effects. Our decisions can make negative or positive impacts depending on whether discernment was used when making the decision. Those impacts don’t just affect us, they also influence those around us.
In 2 Samuel 11, King David was supposed to be at war with his troops. However, at home late one night, he spotted the beautiful Bathsheba from his rooftop. King David’s lack of discernment with his next several decisions sent destructive ripple effects that were felt in his family, Uriah’s family and throughout the entire kingdom for generations. In this case, his prideful and self-seeking responses led to poor decision-making. Fortunately, King David confessed and repented when he was confronted by Nathan.
Afterwards, thankfully, we have many more stories recorded in the Old Testament where we are told that King David humbly “inquired of the Lord” before a decision. He sought God’s perspective and others’ advice and considered the impact of his choices.
To be like Jesus, we need to live out Philippians 2:3-4. If we desire to lead with wise discernment, we should memorize these verses and put them into practice so the ripple effects that go out from our lives bless all those who encounter them.
— Mickey Weston, Chicago White Sox chaplain
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