This is the age of the Selfie. Selfie sticks are flying off the shelf, and it’s a sign that not only this generation of Millenials, but even my generation has become self absorbed with their own selves. Let’s be honest, this generation emulates and exceeds what they see in the previous generation. If we complain that Millenials are self absorbed, that’s because we’ve taught them to be, maybe not consciously, but they’ve emulated what they’ve seen adults do. As much as I don’t want to admit it, I’ve had my own issues with self absorption and it’s annoying cousin passive aggressiveness. For me, getting involved in helping others, pouring into the lives of others is a great way to combat that. This particular season I’m in I can’t say that I’m actively doing that, which means I’m constantly battling my own self absorption issues, and it annoys me. There’s a great statement that I’ve come to learn and live by, I’m not sure where I heard it first, but the statement is: “It should never be about ‘me’, it should be God first, others, and somewhere down the line is me”. We should always be trying to make others better. In dating relationships, it shouldn’t be about how this person makes me feel, but are we making each other better. If the focus is on how I feel when I’m with that person, then when I’m not with that person, then who am I? As a volunteer youth worker working for a Youth Pastor, my focus has been more of how I can help, and what can I do to make the youth group better, when I focus on if my needs are being met or if I “feel”…whatever, then it’s time to check my motivation for serving. Anyway, this is a pretty good article. Enjoy it.
Gazing in the digital mirror, we lose the habit of seeing ourselves as part of a bigger story.
(From The Wall Street Journal)
By Ryan Dobson
Aug. 19, 2014 7:22 p.m. ET
The headline made me laugh. ” Morning Joe Thinks Kim Kardashian’s New Selfie Book is a Sign of the Apocalypse.” Yet Ms. Kardashian’s “Selfish”—a collection of pictures she took of herself—is no joke. Some enterprising publisher is betting “readers” will pay $20 per to flip through 352 pages of bad lighting and self-absorption.
And if it does sell well, maybe the end really is near.
Another selfie made the news this week for a tragic reason. On the coast of Portugal, a Polish couple climbed over the guardrails to snap themselves with the sea as backdrop. While their two young children watched, mom and dad backed off the cliff and fell hundreds of feet to their death.
What’s with this culture of all-me-all-the-time? More important, what’s the alternative, and does anyone have a picture of that?
A Facebook FB +0.94% timeline goes back to 2007. The timeline for my father, James Dobson, goes back four generations to his great-grandfather. My great-great-grandfather was on his way to kill a man when he was diverted to a tent revival in a small Texas town. Instead of taking a life that night, M.V. Billingham gave his life to God. He left his gun on the altar.
M.V. was unarmed, but after that he habitually deployed a secret weapon. For most of his adult life, he routinely prayed for his son, for his son’s children, and for their children to the fourth generation . . . all the way to my dad. Whatever a “selfie” says about a person, this man was the opposite. With a strong sense of “more than me, more than now,” more than a century ago, he prayed for people he’d never meet.
Did it make a difference? My family says yes. Among other things, my dad grew up aware of his place in a bigger story. He knew the next leg of the race was his to run; the baton was his to hand off.
Who’s going to drop out of a relay like that? Not me. Once I grew up—I mean, once I matured enough to be humbled by his unselfishness—I committed to the intergenerational prayers, too.
I won’t say every Millennial is stranded in adolescence, glued to screens, thumb-calloused from texting or unable to think past the end of Grand Theft Auto. But we’re losing the habit of thinking past ourselves. As we do, we lose our best selves and our best chances to help shape what comes next. We drop the baton.
While I was dating, before I met my wife, dad would ask me about the women I was seeing. I’d say this woman made me feel good, so-and-so seemed to support me, that sort of thing. My reasons for dating, he told me, seemed selfish. He said, “Do you make each other better people?” Of course, now I see how right he was. Marriage isn’t about me; it’s about us. And very soon it’s us with children.
So page after glossy page of Kim Kardashian in her mirror may ring up dollars for a woman who hardly needs the change, but what’s the point of 15 minutes at the epicenter of attention?
As the great writer Peter Drucker said to social entrepreneur Bob Buford : “The fruit of your work grows on other people’s trees.” When a couple takes the hard road to stay together, when parents can manage a strong-willed child without breaking her spirit, when adults feel the pain in a child’s outrage and not a reflex to punish, when families live for more than themselves, when unwanted babies get to the parents who want them, the baton is passed, and the lesson is learned: A great life is less like a selfie, more an album of group photos.
View this original article at The Wall Street Journal
Mr. Dobson is author of “Wanting to Believe” (B&H Books). He co-hosts the nationally syndicated radio show “Family Talk” with his father, Dr. James Dobson.
It’s the life you were meant 2 Live 4.
2 Live 4
What comes after dying to self? Abundant life in Christ! Ryan Dobson reveals in this follow up book how to live the only life truly worth living-one that is filled with purpose, courage, love, and serving. Anything less isn’t life.