Jesus said, “No one can serve two masters.” While one master he had in mind was God, the other master is usually taken to be wealth as personified by an ancient god called Mammon.
But for those of us not enamored of wealth, there is another master drawing us away from serving God, and that other master is ourselves. We turn from the creator to the creature we call “me.”
In the battle against self-absorption our patron saint is John the Baptist, who, referring to Christ, said, “He must increase while I must decrease.”
In considering one’s self as rivaling God for calls on our efforts, there is no need for anyone to be severe in ignoring himself or herself. God is lenient with us: as the old saying goes, “He knows the clay we are made of.”
But should we not worry about our relationship with our heavenly master if over and over in the course of our days we go to the fridge or the couch or the TV or the phone instead of applying ourselves to what would be useful in God’s eyes?
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