Caring for our own ambitions and achievements may seem innocent, but God reminds us to do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. It can’t be all about God if it’s even a little bit about us. Selfish ambition and vain conceit will always pull us further away from God. Getting rid of vain conceit is necessary.
During my recent trip to LA, I realized that I was tolerating vain conceit. I love taking photos of myself but it no longer was about glorifying God but glorifying myself. I was convicted by the Holy Spirit as I was posting my stories on Instagram. The question hit my heart, “Am I posting this for God’s glory or for my own glory and fame?”
It’s not bad to use social media, but we must remember that social media can easily position us for vain conceit. This means we must always check our hearts when we are posting on social media. People tend to use social media to highlight their achievements and looks. By definition, vain conceit is when we are excessively proud of our own appearance and achievements.
It’s okay to highlight our achievements if the glory is all for God and not our own.
Social media can easily be all about us, causing us to be excessively proud of our appearance and/or achievements. As children of God, we are called to do everything for the glory of God (1 Cor. 10:31).
We were created to glorify God— not ourselves. It can be tempting to allow a bit of what we do be for the purpose of glorifying ourselves, however, only God deserves the glory. Like I said earlier, it can’t be all about God if it’s even a little bit about us. A great way to check your heart motive is to ask yourself, “Why am I doing this? Is my pursuit to please God or to please others for my own status and merit?”
God makes it clear in Phil 4:3, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit.” Anything done out of selfish ambition or vain conceit is done from pride. Pride will always draw us away from God.
When we tolerate selfish ambition or vain conceit, we are partnering with the spirit of pride that will destroy us. Pride does not come from God because pride will always take our devotion away from Jesus. Anything that pulls us away from God isn’t of God, but sin.
Lucifer fell because he was filled with pride; proud of his beauty and all about his own splendor (Ezekiel 28:17). Pride makes us look more like the devil, but humility makes us look like Jesus.
Jesus did not consider equality with God to be used for His advantage, rather He took the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness, and humbled Himself until death on the cross (Phil 2:6-8). Jesus lived in humility and God raised Him up to the highest place. When we humble ourselves, God always promises to lift us up (1 Peter 5:6).
Tolerating a bit of selfish ambition or vain conceit will only open the door for pride to come into our hearts. Pride will blind us from seeing our true worth in Jesus.
1 John 2:15-16 says, “Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world.”
God makes it clear that we can’t love the world and God. We must choose whether we will devote our heart to the world or Jesus. Let us check our hearts and ask God to reveal any selfish motives we may have. Jesus wants our whole heart. 90% won’t settle for Him— He needs 100% of our heart because if He doesn’t have 100%, He doesn’t have it all.
Are there certain pursuits that have been done for yourself and not for God? What is God asking you to lay down?
God alone deserves the highest praise and glory. Let us continue to fix our eyes and behold Jesus in our everyday life. So remember, get rid of vain conceit.
Prayer: Jesus, let all that I do be unto You. Purify my motives and help me to see You rightly every single day.