For those of us with children and grandchildren, we’ve heard at least one of the above statements—or some variation of them. We’ve struggled with the challenge of teaching them to share with siblings, friends, and strangers. Although they aren’t married, the old saying applies: “What’s mine is mine and what’s yours is mine.”
Selfishness doesn’t always leave after childhood. Not learning to share early in life leads to selfishness in adulthood. But as adults, the toys are bigger, and the consequences of selfishness are more acute.
I admit my periodic selfishness. Being a collector of old and new books, I’ve frequently had other people want to borrow some of them. The wheels in my mind turn before I answer, “Yes.” Will they take care of it, spill coffee on it, let their dog chew it up, or their kids tear it up? So, I often think up a reason to decline their request. “I use that book a lot,” “I don’t loan my books,” or “I know where you can get a copy cheap.”
David had a personal connection with God: “The LORD is my shepherd” (23:1 KJV). But his relationship didn’t lead to selfishness. The Lord was his God, but many other people were connected to David’s God, too, and God answered their prayers just as he did David’s. He also protected and guided them, as he did David.
God’s plan was always that he be shared with everyone, so all can enjoy his love, guidance, and provision. He wasn’t just David’s God. He belongs to anyone willing to repent of their sins and trust him in faith.
When we do, God wants us to share him with those who haven’t. And we can by the practical selfless things we do every day.
Are you sharing God with others or keeping him to yourself?
Martin Wiles is an author, pastor, English teacher, and freelance editor who resides in Greenwood, South Carolina. He is the founder and editor of the internationally recognized website, Love Lines from God (www.lovelinesfromgod.com). Wiles is the Managing Editor for Christian Devotions, the Senior Editor for Inspire a Fire, a Proof Editor for Courier Publishing, and Assistant Editor for Vinewords.net. He has also served as Web Content Editor for Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolina. Wiles has authored Don’t Just Live…Really Live (Ambassador International), A Whisper in the Woods: Quiet Escapes in a Noisy World (Ambassador International), Grits & Grace & God and Grits, Gumbo, and Going to Church (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas), Morning By Morning, Morning Serenity, and Grace Greater Than Sin (America Star Books) and is a contributing author in Penned from the Heart (Son-Rise Publications), Rise (Chaplain Publishing), and Love Knots (Vine-Word Publishing). He has served as Regional Correspondent and Sunday school lesson writer for the Baptist Courier and has also written for Lifeway’s Bible Studies for Life curriculum. He has also been published in Christian Living in the Mature Years, Mature Living, Parenting Teens, Open Windows, Proclaim, Stand Firm, The Secret Place, The Word in Season, The Upper Room, The Upper Room Disciplines, Light from the Word, Reach Out Columbia, Mustard Seed Ministries, Journey Christian Newspaper, Common Ground Herald, The Quiet Hour, Power for Living, Halo Magazine, Joyful Living Magazine, Christian Broadcasting Network, Converge, Sharing, Today’s Christian Living, These Days, Plum Tree Tavern, Eskimo Pie, The Scarlet Leaf Review, Creation Illustrated, LIVE, Purpose Magazine, The Banner, Relevant, Bible Advocate, Reasons to Live, Author Magazine, and Lutheran Digest. Wiles has also written for the Bridges and Pathways Curriculum (Warner Press) and is a regular contributor to Christian Devotions, PCC Daily Devotions, Theology Mix, Inspire a Fire, The Write Conversation, Inkspirations, and VineWords and is a regular writer for the Dorchester County Eagle Record, the Orangeburg County Times and Democrat, and the Greenwood County Index Journal. Wiles has also served on faculty for the Asheville Christian Writer’s Conference. crat, and the Greenwood County Index Journal. Wiles also serves as the Managing Editor for Christian Devotions , the Senior Editor for Inspire a Fire, and as a Proof Editor for Courier Publishing. You can follow him @linesfromgod.