Something greater than ourselves

[Note: After today The Up Devotional will go on pause for a week. It returns on November 21, 2022.]

Some Greeks wanted to see Jesus. “Anyone who loves their life will lose it,” he said, “while anyone who hates their life in this world will keep it for eternal life” (John 12:25).

Talk about heavy!

John Calvin says that Jesus is here warning against those who are “over-addicted to the present life…”* The Life Application Study Bible comments: “We must disown the tyrannical rule of our own self-centeredness.”**

I share this today for two reasons.

First, it’s November 11th. We give thanks for those who fought and died in the horrors of war. Their sacrifice shows us that they were anything but self-centred.

Second, it is important to remember that sacrifice is FOR something. The men and women who laid down their lives gave up their safety for our freedoms. 

When it comes to our daily discipleship, sacrifice is also FOR something. That same study Bible I quoted earlier goes on to say this. “By laying aside our striving for advantage, security, and pleasure, we can serve God lovingly and freely.”** 

That’s so true. When we start to make decisions which disown the tyrannical rule of our own self-centeredness, we seek God’s will more quickly; we feel less inconvenienced when someone needs help; and we find greater satisfaction in giving than getting.

Step one is simply acknowledging that your heart can only have one boss.

Brothers and sisters, the world around us will one day pass away. Our own bodies will be buried in the ground. Relatively speaking, time is short. Let’s live for something greater than ourselves.


Reminder: After today The Up Devotional will go on pause for a week. It returns on November 21, 2022.

–You can now subscribe to The Up Devotional and The Pulse Podcast with Matthew Ruttan wherever you subscribe to podcasts.

–Bible quotes are from the NIV.

–*John Calvin, Calvin’s New Testament Commentaries: The Gospel According to St. John, Part Two 11-21, and The First Epistle of John, trans. T.H.L. Parker (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1959), 37.

–**Life Application Study Bible (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2011), 1765.

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