We’ve all heard the term “high-maintenance” used as a negative characteristic when it comes to a person with whom one is connected. Those people are draining, hard to handle, irritating.
But we do admit that every relationship takes some kind of maintenance. If I don’t pay attention to my marriage the relationship won’t thrive, won’t be mutual, won’t be loving. What would life be like with your partner if you thought only of yourself?
I saw a Tom Toles cartoon today that showed a globe. Each country was labeled thus: “America First,” “Venezuela First,” “India First,” “China First,” “France First,” etc. The little cartoonist guy in the corner says, “Where does that leave peace?”
Which sent me to the Bible to look up something in the letter to the church at Philippi. Advice from the Apostle Paul to that church was, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others.”
If there exists such a thing as “enlightened self-interest” that would be it. We will make our country great — we will make ourselves great — by loving our neighbors, especially the enemy and stranger. Peace on earth.