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Home > 2013 > August Online Only > A Moment to Think About Me

I am tired of loving others. It is exhausting.

I am tired of "love thy neighbor."

I am tired of "these three: faith, hope and love, but the greatest of these is love."

What about me? What about a little me-love?

When I imagine me-love, I imagine a place that is all about me. This place would start with a chair, perfectly molded to my body. A chair so me-oriented that it adjusts and lumbar supports. I could sit in my me-chair for hours on end in perfect comfort.

My me-love-chair would come with remotes. But these remotes would never get lost (that pisses me off). I would not even have to lean forward to grab these remotes off the coffee table. In my me-chair, the remotes would all be built-in. I would never have to move.

In my me-chair, everything around would be all about me. The stereo system would be programmed to all my me-songs and me-stations. The surround of speakers would all be modulated and pointed directly at me.

In my me-chair I could control access. My remotes would include the ability to lock the door, so I could keep others out or allow them access to my me-space. Not just anyone should be allowed to a space about me.

My me-chair of course is climate controlled, but it is more than just temperature. Any space can have a thermostat. No, in my me-space I would be able to control more than the temperature. I would also have God-like powers to control the very weather. I could summon the wind with the push of a button. My me-chair is so powerful I can summon the sun to shine on my head. Now that is quite a trick.

It would not be enough to merely control comfort, entertainment, access and climate … my me-chair would also have to control space and distance. I can fix that. To my me-chair, I will attach four wheels, a drive train, engine and gas tank, so I can take my me-chair wherever I want to go.

My me-chair of course is also known as a "car."

It is an amazing invention that is all about me.

All about me

Who do all these other people think that they are? How can they possibly do what they do?

It is no wonder that I get so upset when the others, those outside my me-space, don't give me the me-love. Don't those folks realize that this space is all about me? The chair says it is all about me. The stereo sings it is all about me. The power windows, the sunroof, the cup holders; they are all about me. The climate controls say it is all about me. Even the steering wheel submits to my every desire.

So why don't these other fools act the same way? They have an agenda that is not about me. They cut me off. They drive the wrong speed. They get in my way. They live in violent dissonance to my perfect me-space.

Inside it is all about me.

Outside it is about, what? Someone else. That just can't be. So what do I do? I lash out when the me-bubble is prodded, just like a me-addict does. I scream the very me-thoughts I feel inside. I use me-fueled gestures to express my me-dissonance, to show my me-anger.

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Tony Kriz is a writer and church leader from Portland, Oregon, and Author in Residence at Warner Pacific College.

Posted: August 26, 2013

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Displaying 1–5 of 8 comments

Robert Charles

September 29, 2013  10:53pm

Very well written Tony. I think you really address a social issue here. And Richard, that's very sincere of you to state your concern for your brother via an internet forum. *sarcasm*

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Tony Kriz

September 08, 2013  4:44pm

Richard, I would like to extend to you my most sincere apology for the above article. It is beyond excuse and I need to beg you for forgiveness. I forgot to tell Leadership Journal's most professional team of editors to print the article in the "satire font." If they had, I am sure that it would have relieved some of your confusion and your very reasonable and wise consternation. Your humble LJ contributor, Tony

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Richard Pheasant

September 07, 2013  3:42am

I'm not entirely sure of the point of this article, except to say that you find security in your car because that is a place you can be yourself? By the time you get out of your car, it has allowed you to be someone you are not - someone 'exactly that I want people to see'. That comes across that you are faking and being 'Christian man' to please those at church. If you can't be yourself at church, I would suggest finding some sincere Christian friends and share with them the struggles you are going through and get some prayer. As a Christian leader, you appear to confess you are not genuine in your Christian walk, which is not a healthy place to be, especially if you are working with young Christians in a college? You are their example. On that note, can I add that using expressions like 'piss me off' does not come across well. Language we use is just as much a part of our witness and differs us from non-C's. Again, it could also express where you are currently at? Will pray for you

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Robin Swieringa

August 27, 2013  3:34pm

This piece suggests some of the benefits of attending a "parish" (or neighborhood) church. If I go to a church I can walk to (as opposed to going in my transformer), it's likely in my neighborhood. If there are other people from my neighborhood who attend there, then they may see me--and I them--out in the yard, playing with children, etc., and we have reason to stop and chat. We'd also have friendship- and community-building opportunities that commuters-to-church don't have: walking over to each other's houses; having in-home movie-date nights with other couples, or block parties; figuring how we could help a needy person or organization who/that lives nearby; starting a mid-week sports game for all neighborhood families (kick-ball, softball, etc.) together. Truly doing life together out of church makes it hard to present only my polished Christian persona; if I insist on limiting my contacts to "church," my image is tarnished, too! And no one can hide out for long in a small church!

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carol wilson

August 27, 2013  2:23pm

It's true. I am that fallen creature in the "me seat" and the "me home" -- the perfect example of the " why do I do what I don't want to do and don't do what I want?" Yet, because I do know that God - and His grace - is my only salvation, you will see me at times with hands raised during worship. Sometimes with a smile, sometimes with tears, almost always with a private conversation with God. It's not at all " I'm this wonderful, godly human." It's "Lord, I am such a wretch. Please forgive me and thank you for your mercy." Or, it's "Lord, I absolutely don't feel like worshipping You, but I give my stubborn, angry, weak, hopeless ...whatever...to You. You are my hope, Lord." It's surrender and trust and confession. There's hypocritical folks in our churches, for sure; but sometimes there's folks who are honest with themselves, have a circle of others with whom they're honest, and who raise their hands and smile because they understand it's all about God, in spite of their ugliness.

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