<<self-absorbed unhappiness>>

Self-pity happens when things are not going my way so, trying to justify my attitudes and actions in my carnal mind, I get discouraged and feel sorry for myself.  Tiredness, stress, hassles, strained relationships, criticism and being taken advantage of accentuates these negative, pessimistic thoughts. However, remember we won't get what we do deserve (which is hell because of our sin), so the outlook is not as bleak as it would be otherwise. Focus on the good, positive factors, and who represents you, not what opposes you (Rom 8:31; Phil 4:8; 1 Jn 4:4).

When we are experiencing hardship or injustices and begin to complain ‘why me – it’s not fair’ this is saying to God what you have allowed is not reasonable (Isa 45:9). Trials are the means of development and refinement if we learn and grow through them by responding correctly rather than trying

A great antidote to self-pity is “I will bless the Lord at all times” – Psalm 34:1

to get out of them or retaliate, for the truth is “All things work for good to them that love God” (Rom 8:28). The numerous, daily challenges to our faith and Christian character give us opportunities to gain the victory over self-pity as we ‘die’ to ourselves.             

When Martha complained, “Don’t you care, Jesus, the load is unbearable”, He told her to get a proper perspective on things, and change her attitude (Lk 10:38-42). For a Christian self is not to be the centre of our world, Christ is to be the focus. If self is dominant God is not. In trust and confidence claim the words of Scripture, “He will fulfill His purpose for me”…, for “my times are in your hands” (Ps 31:15, 138:8). Commit yourself to God, allow Him to outwork His plans, and acknowledge His presence with you (Ps 23:3, 37:5; Prov 16:3).

A limited understanding of God’s ways sometimes leads to self-pity. “I have done right but it counts for nothing...” said David, but when he entered God’s presence he saw things from a new perspective (Ps 73:12,13,17). He could encourage himself – “Why are you cast down, my soul? Put your hope in God” (Ps 42:5,11).

At other times, being ignored or overlooked may lead to the festering of wrong attitudes. God sees and hears even if others don’t. Rest assured He has your interests at heart – He died for you. To cling to attitudes of resentment and self-pity can rebound with unexpected consequences (Est 3:2-6, 5:9-14, 7:9,10).

See also: attitude, compare/comparison, complain, focus, moods, not being ministered to, others, perspective, selfishness, self-talk, victim mentality.