That’ll be a resounding Yes. I am self-righteous. I don’t want to be. I don’t want to come across that way. Hopefully no one thinks I am, but I’m sure someone does. When you have opinions and you stand up for them, some people will always view that as self-righteous, even if you don’t mean it that way. I accused someone of being self-righteous today. I don’t know her. She’s some lady in a Youtube video, claiming that Monster energy drinks are covered in Satanic symbols and profanity. It got on my nerves.
Watch the annoying video here: Monster Energy Drinks Are From Satan!
Then, after some reflection, I asked myself, Am I self-righteous? I had to answer Yes. I think we’re all at least a little bit self-righteous. We all think we’re right about something. For example, I am still breastfeeding my toddler. She’s 20 months (that’s a little over a year and a half to you guys who aren’t parents and don’t speak month-ese). I think it’d be great if more mothers would do the same. Does that make me self-righteous because I’m proud of the fact we’ve made it this far, and that I’m more than likely going to hit the World Health Organization’s recommendation for breastfeeding for at least two years for optimal child health?
*Ahem! Que applause!*
Does being proud of yourself equal self-righteousness? I’m not sure. Therein lies the struggle. We all want to have a healthy self-esteem. At the same time, as Christians, we want to always remember that our righteousness comes only through what Jesus did for us when He died in our place and took our sins. Because of what He did, we are righteous. Here’s what I really think self-righteousness is: thinking you’re better than others because you’re doing it all right and they’ve just got it all wrong. I honestly think we have to walk a fine line. This seems to be a delicate area.
So, since I still breastfeed (mostly just morning, naptime and nighttime), I should never cross over into self-righteousness by thinking that moms who don’t breastfeed are terrible people. Because they’re not!! There are so many situations where the mom wants to, but her body won’t cooperate, or the stress of juggling it all (life, work, family opinions, relationship issues…) just finally got to her and she had to let go of something, or she would just go nuts. I completely get that. I’ve been there! I was a crazy person (well, not crazy, but very, very stressed out) for nearly the entire first year after I had my daughter. Trying to juggle it all was super hard. And pumping sucked!! But I got through it. Am I self-righteous about that? Well, I’m glad I made it through it, for sure. I’m glad that part is over and for the past few months I’ve been able to stay at home.
In the end, I don’t know how to define the difference between self-righteousness and just plain being proud of yourself. I just knew the minute I watched the video of the woman I don’t even know, that I didn’t want to be like her in any way. It was repulsive to me. Her attitude of…superiority (maybe that’s it), well it really just rubbed me the wrong way. So, my goal is never to come across that way. I hope I don’t. I don’t know everything!! There are decisions I’ve made, as a new parent, that I feel are the best possible decisions. But this is my life, and I will answer for how I’ve raised my little one. Your life is yours. You will make decisions based on what you feel is best.
Here’s the thing: some truths are absolute. Set in stone. Like Jesus. Yes, He is the only way! He died for us! Because of that, if we believe, we are made righteous through what He did. Not anything we do. Not anything we do. Even if we buy a Monster energy drink! Sorry, couldn’t resist. But seriously, an energy drink with 666 on it (maybe??) and a possible (highly unlikely) upside-down cross inside the “O” of the word Monster? Come on. Can we all at least agree that it’s ridiculous to focus on crap like that? Who cares?!
Okay, so I’m self-righteous. So are you. We aren’t good people. We aren’t perfect. Only God is perfect. Let’s all just be kind. Let’s remember 1 Corinthians 13:2-4:
“If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing. Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant…”
Are you self-righteous? What are your thoughts?