Many of us have used terminology about others that speaks to their ego. “He’s too big for his britches” or “Don’t say that or she’ll get the big head,” are both commonplace when we discuss how someone seems to be overtaken with their egotistical ways. Ego can overtake someone, but when we get down to the real center of it all, the definition of Ego can be summed up as this, “Edging God Out.”
When we become wrapped up in our everyday comings and goings, how we approach them can show us where our mind is really at. When we get so buried in our work, our activities, or even our families, we many times find that we are forgetting the most important factor of them all, keeping God at the center. One thing I would encourage you to do is to see where your focus lies. Look deeply into your heart and see who you are praising when things go well? Where do you turn when things get rocky?
For many of us, the answer to the second question is the same…we turn to prayer when things start to go wrong, because we can’t see any other way out. This should also be our attitude toward the good times in our lives as well. God is the same whether things are going well for us, or things are going badly; He is always the same, never changing, no matter the circumstance.
Too many times in our lives we only remember God when we need Him, forgetting that we need Him in every aspect of our lives. God is not just our go-to-guy in the time of trouble. Scripture tells us that God is our “very present help in trouble (Psalm 46:1).” Many of us only remember this verse when it comes to our dealings with God.
In those times of trouble, however, we do seem to find ourselves forgetting the words that David shared a few lines later: “Be Still and Know that I am God (Psalm 46:10)”. God is always there, and we are asked to be still at times and let Him be there. When we let our Ego take over, we still turn to God in our times of trouble, but we let pride allow us to hold on to what we are turning to God for, because we feel as if we need to do something ourselves…letting go of our problems at the foot of the cross is not a bad thing.
This can also be translated into the good times in our lives as well. We too many times forget how we got where we are…we have done nothing on our own, and what we have is a gift from God. We are His. We have nothing without His blessings, and we need to remember that in the good times we must also give Him praise for what we have.
John the Baptist understood this, he had a following…everything was going great for him in his ministry, but when asked if he was the chosen Messiah, he responded that he was but a messenger sent to prepare the way. When Jesus entered the scene and was baptized, John again proclaimed praise and informed those who followed him that Jesus was the one they were seeking. We should put on a mind like John and remember his words when asked how he felt when his followers departed from him to follow Jesus. “He must increase, I must decrease (John 3:30).”
We must get out of the way for God to truly bless us in the way He intends…when we hold on to the problems and seek praise for the accomplishments, we limit God in what He can do in our life. We are His children, we are His messengers, and, simply put, we are His. What are you doing today in your life? Are you seeking the glory that is rightfully God’s? Or, are you seeking to praise Him in every aspect of your life? Don’t let your Ego edge God out of your life.