by Rick Warren — August 24, 2023
From Essentials for Living
“Look out for one another’s interests, not just for your own.”
Philippians 2:4 (GNT)
Everything in our society conditions us to think of ourselves first. But the Bible says, “Look out for one another’s interests, not just for your own” (Philippians 2:4 GNT).
That is such a countercultural verse. We don’t naturally think about other people’s needs. That’s something we have to learn to do. We more naturally think about our needs, our desires, our goals, and our ambitions. As a result, millions of people are disconnected because they’re only thinking of themselves and not anyone else’s needs.
Recently, when I was watching TV, I saw three commercials, one after another, with the same tagline: “You deserve it.” “Buy this shampoo! You deserve it.” “Buy this expensive car because you deserve it!”
But let me share two very basic truths about life. First, the world does not revolve around you. You’re incredibly special in God’s eyes, and you were created for a purpose—but the world does not revolve around you.
The second truth is this: God has promised that when you focus on meeting the needs of other people, he will meet your needs. Why? Because he wants you to learn to be unselfish. He wants you to learn to be loving and generous like he is.
When you’re considerate of other people’s needs, you don’t expect them to be perfect. The Bible says, “Make allowance for each other’s faults” (Colossians 3:13 NLT). You’re not perfect, so why should you demand it of anybody else?
Proverbs 17:9 says, “Love forgets mistakes” (TLB). When you are trying to make a connection with someone, you don’t have to remain blind to that person’s faults. You can just choose to overlook their imperfections.
Great friends are good forgetters. Instead of dwelling on someone’s mistakes or faults, a good friend considers the other person’s needs.