Submitted by Andy McIlvain.
We live in a MeWorld. We are only one click away from “my documents,” “my calendar,” “my favorites,” “my music,” “my pictures,” and “my shopping cart.”
The term “MeWorld” comes from Anthropologist Thomas de Zengotita. In his book Mediated: The Hidden Effects of the Media on You and Your World Zengotita examines the ways in which the world of media shapes our lives. Zengotita sees the technologically advanced, media-saturated West as a world filled with millions of individual “flattered selves,” each living in its own insulated, personalized world. He believes the narcissism that comes from living in MeWorld has been fashioned and fed by media representations in all areas of our lives, from private self-representations that make us the star to public advertisements, television, to even magazines that ever address us personally.
Sadly, the most precarious part of flattered living is that we gradually lose sight of both life and self. Despite all of the declarations on my phone or computer, this is not, in fact, “my world.” Although we are flattered by the attention of our MeWorld, WE are not the center of all existence.
French philosopher Rene Descartes outlined one reason why: “Now, if I were independent of all other existence, and were myself the author of my being… I should have given myself all those perfections of which I have some idea, and I should thus be God.” What he is saying is if I were truly independent, if the world actually revolved around me, why should I find in myself any imperfection at all? Would it not then be irrational to live as if I am the center of the world?
This is why C.S. Lewis said that, in the pursuit of humility, “It is better to forget about yourself altogether,” and that the humble person, “will not be thinking about himself at all.” Humility is what John the Baptist wanted, for Christ to increase while we decrease (John 3:30). R.C Chapman said, “What is most precious in the sight of God is often least noticed by men”
All of us have known people that are selfless. My mother and my wife’s mother are examples of women who gave up their dreams and aspirations in life to devote themselves to their families. Their accolades and trophies were found in the everyday, the laundry room and the seemingly endless and tiresome needs of their children.
None of us are celebrities; we are all called to be servants. Jesus calls us to embrace where he has placed us in life and to serve those with us, beside us, and in front of us.