Appropriately Self-Centered

Did you know that our brains aren’t fully developed until our mid- to late twenties? So the idea that every person, especially adolescents and adults, should innately know the importance of thinking of others is unreasonable. Teens are developmentally appropriately self-centered. This article gives a general synopsis of the why behind “adolescent egocentrism”: This doesn’t mean that kids these days will never mature into contributing members of society. It just means every adult was also once a teenager. Those of us who have learned the value of service likely learned it because we saw it modeled by the adults in our lives or found ourselves in situations that built empathy and humility in our hearts. Claire Brosius writes that she found her time doing housekeeping at a summer camp a pivotal point in learning just how valuable service is in shaping a godly heart and why St. Benedict made everyone serve in the kitchen. To allow God to shape us through service means teens must intentionally choose to get out of their heads and put themselves in someone else’s shoes. For adults, it means modeling the humble joy of service and unconditional love for those you serve. Where can you serve this week?