It’s obvious with celebrities and politicians, they want to be seen and heard. It’s the nature of their careers. They put themselves out there on the stage, in public events, on social media or television, all for the purpose of recognition and presence. The more we see of them, the more we know who they are and what they stand for.
Sometimes it’s a bit to much and you feel like they’re everywhere you turn — an obtrusive presence to your calm existence.
Thankfully, we can turn off the TV and avoid social media, if we really want to.
Yet, there are other people in our lives who seem to have the same, obtrusive effect. Whether it’s in our family, among friends or at work, they push themselves forward in every conversation or gathering. It’s harder to turn those off.
I ask myself the question: Do I so long to be heard and known that I intrude on others’ space? Is it all about me?
According to Jesus, it shouldn’t be. He said:
Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.*
For the Christ follower, making a difference comes with self-sacrifice. Oswald Chambers uses the big word I used for the title of this piece:
The secret of a disciple’s life is devotion to Jesus Christ, and the characteristic of the life is its unobtrusiveness.*
As we focus this Friday, I choose to focus on Jesus, not me. When self is in the center, I neglect the feelings and needs of others. When Jesus is in his rightful place, it’s not me who matters, but the other, as I now see with the eyes of Christ and not my own. I can move willingly into the shadows in order to let Jesus take prominence over all.
I’m not perfect at this yet…my obtrusiveness pops out from time-to-time, but he knows I’m trying.
What about you? Obtrusive or unobtrusive? It’s all about focus.
Grace and Peace
John 12:24 (NIV)
Chambers, Oswald. My Utmost for His Highest. June 19, devotion.