I have to look out for my own interests. I have to do what’s best for me. If I don’t look out for myself, no one else will.” How many times have we heard those words from a free-agent athlete who has made more than enough money to last most people a couple of lifetimes? We’ve almost come to expect this “me-centered” approach to life, and not just from athletes. I think we’ve all bought into looking at life selfishly more than we’d like to admit.
Which is what makes the “others-centered” nature of what Esther Kim did at the US Olympic Taekwondo Trials in Colorado Springs so exceptional. At the start of the flyweight final match, Esther conceded, allowing her best friend and training partner, Kay Poe, to win. Kay, top ranked in the world, had injured her left knee in the semifinal and could barely stand up. “If we clashed hard enough, her knee might have been permanently injured,” Esther said. Esther Kim forfeited a spot on the US Olympic taekwondo team so her friend could go to the 2000 Games in Sydney. She later commented, “I wasn’t throwing my dreams away; I was handing them to Kay.”
In John 13 Jesus said that His followers could be identified by the way they loved each other. He said, “Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another” (vv. 34–35).
Have you done any “others-centered” loving lately? It’s a great way to let friends and loved ones know that you are a follower of Christ.