WHAT ARE SOME VERSES TO HELP ME STOP FOCUSING ON MYSELF?
by Shawn Brasseaux
Christian friend, your flesh (sin) is controlling you. You need to overcome it by walking in the Spirit: “And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit” (Galatians 5:24-25). The following verses will allow the Holy Spirit to renew your mind (Romans 12:1-2; Ephesians 4:23; Colossians 3:9-10), which will then shift focus from you to the Lord Jesus Christ. You need to prayerfully memorize portions of the following Scriptures, or at least have these verses/references ready when you focus on yourself.
The Christian life is exactly how Jesus Christ lived while He was on Earth. It was constant dependence on, faith in, what His Heavenly Father had instructed Him to do and say. He was never self-consumed, so neither should we.
Hebrews chapter 10: “ Then said I, Lo, I come (in the volume of the book it is written of me,) to do thy will, O God.  Above when he said, Sacrifice and offering and burnt offerings and offering for sin thou wouldest not, neither hadst pleasure therein; which are offered by the law;  Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.” (This, of course, is Christ’s words to Father God concerning Calvary.)
Matthew 26:39: “And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.” Mark 14:36: “And he said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt.” Luke 22:42: “Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done.” (This too, of course, is Christ’s words to Father God concerning Calvary.)
John 4:34: “Jesus saith unto them, My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work.” John 6:38: “For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” John 7:16: “Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me.” John 9:4: “I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work.”
Jesus Christ was always looking to accomplish His Heavenly Father’s will rather than His own. He was conscience of the fact that He was on Earth to serve His Father rather than Himself. Ultimately, He served His Father by preaching to and then dying for sinners (in perfect accordance with His Father’s will).
Philippians 2:1-8: “ If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies,  Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.  Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.  Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.  Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:  Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:  But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:  And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”
Watch now how Jesus Christ manifested His life through the Apostle Paul.
First Corinthians 15:10: “But by the grace of God I am what I am: and his grace which was bestowed upon me was not in vain; but I laboured more abundantly than they all: yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.” (Paul knew it was because of God’s grace that he was what he was. His religious works had gotten him nowhere. Christ Jesus working on his behalf [at Calvary], as well in and through him in ministry, was the issue.) Second Corinthians 4:5: “For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake.” The focus was not Paul but Jesus Christ! Colossians 1:27-29: “…Christ in you, the hope of glory: Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus: Whereunto I also labour, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.” Paul preached Christ Jesus, not himself! He worked in ministry according to Christ’s working.
Philippians 3:1-9: “ Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things to you, to me indeed is not grievous, but for you it is safe.  Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.  For we are the circumcision, which worship God in the spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.  Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more:  Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee;  Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.  But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Christ.  Yea doubtless, and I count all things but loss for the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord: for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and do count them but dung, that I may win Christ,  And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith:….” (As a lost/unsaved man, Paul had been religious, focused on self, self-righteous. He had given that up when trusted Jesus Christ. Now, he has no confidence in his flesh’s performance. He relies by faith in Christ’s performance and Christ’s righteousness! A sure way to focus on yourself is to labor under the Mosaic Law—religion/legalism. A sure way to focus on Christ Jesus is to remember the message of grace!)
If there will be any boasting, it will be in Christ and it will because of Christ, not because of something we have done. First Corinthians 1:30-31: “ But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:  That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.” Remember, Romans 3:26-28: “ To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.  Where is boasting then? It is excluded. By what law? of works? Nay: but by the law of faith.  Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.” Never can a Christian boast about anything done on his or her part. The only boasting is in the cross of Christ, in what He did for us! Galatians 6:14: “But God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world is crucified unto me, and I unto the world.”
Pride, focusing on self, was the original sin of Lucifer before he became Satan, the Devil. Ezekiel 28:17 is God speaking to Lucifer: “Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness: I will cast thee to the ground, I will lay thee before kings, that they may behold thee.” God also said in Isaiah chapter 14: “ How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!  For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:  I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.”
Hence, in 1 Timothy 3:6, one of the qualifications of a bishop, a church overseer, is that he not be new to Christian (grace) doctrine. “Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.” These are all wonderful verses to help us remember, “yet not I, but Christ!”
SUPPLEMENTAL: CHRIST AVOIDED ATTENTION WHILE ON EARTH
When Jesus Christ saw that His miracles drew too much attention to Him, He left the area as quickly as possible. He wanted His Heavenly Father to be praised instead. Notice the following samples:
- Matthew 9:8-9: “But when the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men. And as Jesus passed forth from thence….
- Matthew 9:26-27: “And the fame hereof went abroad into all that land. And when Jesus departed thence,….”
- Mark 1:28-29: “And immediately his fame spread abroad throughout all the region round about Galilee. And forthwith, when they were come out of the synagogue, they entered into the house of Simon and Andrew, with James and John.”
- Mark 1:45: “But he went out, and began to publish it much, and to blaze abroad the matter, insomuch that Jesus could no more openly enter into the city, but was without in desert places: and they came to him from every quarter.”
- Mark 2:12-13: “And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion. And he went forth again by the sea side; and all the multitude resorted unto him, and he taught them.”
- Mark 3:9-13: “And he spake to his disciples, that a small ship should wait on him because of the multitude, lest they should throng him. For he had healed many; insomuch that they pressed upon him for to touch him, as many as had plagues. And unclean spirits, when they saw him, fell down before him, and cried, saying, Thou art the Son of God. And he straitly charged them that they should not make him known. And he goeth up into a mountain, and calleth unto him whom he would: and they came unto him.”
- Mark 5:20-21: “And he departed, and began to publish in Decapolis how great things Jesus had done for him: and all men did marvel. And when Jesus was passed over again by ship unto the other side, much people gathered unto him: and he was nigh unto the sea.”
- Luke 4:37-38: “And the fame of him went out into every place of the country round about. And he arose out of the synagogue, and entered into Simon’s house….”
- Luke 5:24-27: “But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power upon earth to forgive sins, (he said unto the sick of the palsy,) I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy couch, and go into thine house. And immediately he rose up before them, and took up that whereon he lay, and departed to his own house, glorifying God. And they were all amazed, and they glorified God, and were filled with fear, saying, We have seen strange things to day. And after these things he went forth, and saw a publican, named Levi, sitting at the receipt of custom: and he said unto him, Follow me.”