And we wonder what’s wrong with society today…Last night I saw someone wearing a t-shirt that had the school’s football logo (not Edgewood) on the front, and on the back the shirt read “Team Me”. If you are the person that was wearing that shirt and are reading this, I apologize…and this is no reflection on you personally. Every time I saw those words I just kept thinking that there was something not right about them. I mean, I know I’m a girl but, first of all, from a football standpoint, it’s pretty much a team sport, right?! But as the phrase settled in my mind, I know that it’s really about something so much bigger. In our society we are bombarded with the idea that life is really all about ME. Life here in America is about looking out for #1 and stepping on anyone who gets in the way. We are teaching our children (and ourselves) that WE are the center of the universe and that what WE are doing, wearing, eating, is of utmost importance to the rest of the world. If our society was not so driven on being so self-centered, would we be overwhelmed with a non-stop barrage of SELFIES?
This concept of TEAM ME is so counterintuitive to the teachings of Jesus.
Jesus says, “If any of you want to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me.” (Luke 9:23, emphasis mine). The world says “You can’t be number 1 if you’re following.”
In Galatians 2:20, Paul says, “My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.” If anybody out there would understand dying to self it would be Paul. He was a zealous persecutor of Christians who believed whole-heartedly in what he was doing…until Jesus showed him the true way to life. And that true way to life was in death. No longer living for oneself and one’s selfish desires. Not needing to be number 1.
In the book of John are written the words that I must remind myself each and every day when I become selfish and want my way rather than following the way God has planned. “He must become greater, and I must become less and less.” Is this what we are teaching our kids? There IS someone greater out there. And we must make him the leader over us as we become less. His desires for us become more, our selfishness becomes less. His way in our lives become more, our plans become less. His love in our hearts for others, our love for ourselves becomes less.
There is no room for TEAM ME if we want to follow Jesus.