The Center . . .

Several weeks ago I was in a conference and one participant thought that American culture was superior to all other cultures.   What I saw that day was ethnocentrism — an attitude and position that assumes everything revolves around one’s particular cultural point of view — an attitude that believes that there is only way.  In a real sense, it is making one’s own way the center of the world.

Making ourself the center of the world may come in the form of the food we eat, the greetings we use, or the jokes we tell, the type of housing we believe is appropriate, etc.  When people make their way the center of the world, they judge other cultures solely in terms of their own culture. Such attitudes find expressions in feeling superior to others and labeling other people as inferior or even primitive.

I am thankful that my God did not have such an attitude and that we are given an excellent example of how we should live. The Bible says,

For, let this mind be in you that is also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal to God, but did empty himself, the form of a servant having taken, in the likeness of men having been made, and in fashion having been found as a man, he humbled himself, having become obedient unto death—death even of a cross. (Philippians 2:5-6, YLT)

That is the whole point of the Christmas season — our God, Immanuel, did not view us or anyone with an attitude of superiority, inferior, or even primitive. Instead, he became flesh and lived among us.

In this Christmas season, we can humble ourselves, not making our way the center of the world.  In what ways, could you not make your way the center of the world on behalf of others?

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