Hello friend! I’m so glad you’ve stopped by! This post is part of a 31-Day writing adventure, of which I only have two days left! I’d love for you to read along for the rest of the series (and beyond…). You can find the introduction to the series, and a “Table of Contents” as each day goes live, right here. Thanks so much for dropping in!

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Have you ever been in the middle of what felt like the biggest catastrophe ever, some major crisis-life-event moment, and had a sudden reminder that the rest of the world has no vested interest in your crisis whatsoever? Like when you arrive at the hospital, contractions happening fast fast fast, you’ve barely managed to make it through the halls, to the elevator and up to the birthing floor. You step out of the elevator, and your husband tells the nurses you’re about to have a baby.

They ask you to hang on and turn back to their computer to try to figure out why something isn’t working properly.

Life momentarily feels like a movie, and your scene is reaching a climax… but some new twist in the plot reminds you: Sorry, darling, but you’re not the star of this show.

{And, yes, that totally happened to me. See birth story number three.}

There’s this very interesting moment described in John 3 where John the Baptist’s followers realize Jesus, whom John baptized, was now baptizing — and lots of people were following Him.

It seems as if they asked in a sort of So what are ya gonna do about it, huh? way.

John had a cool and collected reply for them:

“You yourselves bear me witness, that I said, ‘I am not the Christ,’ but, ‘I have been sent before Him.’ He who has the bride is the bridegroom; but the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom’s voice. Therefore this joy of mine is fulfilled. He must increase, but I must decrease.” {John 3: 28-30, emphasis added}

John’s answer in a nutshell: I am really, really happy about this. This story isn’t about me, but I’ve had the privilege of being a part of it. Jesus is going to grow in fame and importance, and it’s necessary that my story heads toward a resolution, as a result.


You may never have been told to just hang on a minute while trying to make it through contractions, but I’m sure you’ve had a moment where life had its own special way of reminding you that the world is not revolving around you.

If we listen to the hype, seeing ads on TV or in magazines or online, we might start to believe it actually is about us. We might even say I do deserve a vacuum cleaner that can give me everythingYes, I want makeup with a perfect finish because I am worth it. Advertising is generally geared toward appealing to our more selfish natures.

But in the ways of God, to go higher, you’ve got to get low. John the Baptist was full of joy because he had the privilege of going before Jesus, whose story was just beginning.

And the truth is, for each of us, we are likely to find much greater joy in serving a greater cause, living our lives with the purposeful decision to remember that we are not at the center, rather than trying to convince the world that we are in fact at the center, and the world needs to revolve accordingly.

So how do we decrease?

Well, sometimes, life has its own special ways of teaching you to decrease without you necessarily making the decision to do so. Unless you have enough money to pay someone else to raise your children, parenthood is a good example of a time when, from Day 1, someone else’s needs are going to precede your own in levels of importance.

It is really hard. But you begin to learn to let go of the belief that you need to make sure things happen the way you want them to all the time, or else you stand to be quite frustrated, because, they just won’t.

While life may hand us some decrease on a platter, it is good for us to make the conscious decision to “decrease ourselves.”

Because in the Lord’s glorious goodness, He decided to build this inverse paradox of greatness in smallness into the laws of His universe.

He will use the weak to shame the strong. He will oppose the proud, but give grace to the humble. He blesses the meek, and says they will inherit the Earth.

So what can we do about it?

Let go of the belief that it is all about you. This is hard. We are born, and we come out hollering, I’ve got needs and I’m gonna holler until somebody meets ’em!!! There are absolutely days where I want it to be about me. When I lost my Dad, I wanted the whole world to stop so that I could just have some clear time to deal with my own pain.

Choose to give in ways that will not tangibly benefit you in return. If I clean my house, I reap the benefits of enjoying a clean house. If I pray for my children, I’m praying with a vested interest in seeing the will of God accomplished in their lives. If I commit time to praying for the child refugees in Syria, I am giving time to a cause that will not benefit me personally. I am saying “This is important, even if, on a surface level it seems like it has nothing to do with me. I can let go of the importance of myself and serve.”

If I commit my finances to sponsoring a child through Compassion, I am choosing to decrease the amount of money I spend on myself, in an effort to further the desire of God that His children care for people in poverty around the world.

I read an amazing story last night about a woman who sponsored a child in each of the countries where Compassion worked. She is currently sponsoring 27 children, writes each of them letters every month, and has visited many of them in their native countries at Compassion centers. Not having children of her own, she chose to give and pour into these children instead.

Her comment at the end the story? That it was a blessing to give, and a privilege.

In this world, it doesn’t make sense that we will be blessed by choosing to decrease — but here is another unexpected treasure from the hand of God. We absolutely are.