Posted by: Jo | April 4, 2014

Whatever is a Selfie?

“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” (James 4:10)

imageAs I grow older I am having an increasing problem in keeping abreast with how vocabulary is constantly changing. I frequently hear words that I have never heard before and have no clue to what they mean. It was bad enough when we first bought our computer and then the problem was reversed. I knew the words that went with this new technology, but they certainly did not have the same meaning that I was familiar with. e. g. a “mouse” would have brought forth a shriek from me, but now a “mouse” sits beside my computer screen and certainly does not resemble the mental picture I have of the creature it is named after. Fortunately I have a tribe of granddaughters to turn to and they patiently explain and lead me through the maze of the ever changing spoken word. The latest one to arouse my curiosity is the new word “selfie” I now have discovered that if you have a smart phone ( that also needed to be explained at a previous granddaughter lesson) you can take photos of yourself wherever you are and send them to others or just admire yourself in all different locations or all different poses.

The explanation made me think of how this new word sums up what is happening in our present generation. We have become obsessed with ourselves. We may not be all taking photos of ourselves constantly, but “self” has become very dominant in our everyday life. I have also seen on a magazine rack a magazine entitled SELF. Other magazines feature copious articles on self-improvement, self-awareness, and self-beauty. What I haven’t seen are too many articles about being humble and meek, like this beautiful advice from our Lord;

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:29)

Jesus also stresses being meek in the Beatitudes;

“Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.” (Matthew 5:5)

image These two powerful (yes these words are powerful when they relate to the Christian life) words have become very misunderstood in our society. We intend to think of meek as meaning weak; and humble has become to mean lowly or somehow inferior. It is startling then to read Jesus uses both these words to describe himself who was neither weak nor lowly. I decided to research these words and was surprised to see how many verses mentioned them. As I read them I grasped that both these words only have true meaning when they relate to our relationship with the Heavenly Father. Self takes second place. We become humble when we realise this. We become meek when we acknowledge that the Lord knows better than us in how to live our lives. This then overflows into our relationships with others and we are more willing to think of others more highly than ourselves. Self doesn’t become so important. Thomas a Kempis gives us a wonderful piece of advice on this subject;

“A humble knowledge of thyself is a surer way to God than a deep search after learning.”

One of my favourite verses on being humble is found in 2 Chronicles where God tells his people the wonderful outcome of humbly seeking him in prayer;

“If my people , who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)

Imagine! By humbling ourselves in prayer we could become a part of bringing about an incredible blessing of forgiveness and healing. Self suddenly doesn’t feel to be that important.

Related Articles:

· Humility versus Humi liation (


  1. You are such a welcome soul to have in my life Jo! I love your gentle way of reminding us of how the lord would have us be.

    and how easily we slip in the fast changing life style we are apart of..Your words are always wise and welcome! .


  2. Thanks Jo – good Scripture choices. We, as a culture, are certainly heading farther and farther into “selfies” in everything. Everyone has “rights” to do whatever they want, whatever “feels” good. But, as Christians we need to remember what you remind us – in Kingdom living, Christ is first, we are last (but unbelievably blessed by it).


  3. Beautiful article


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