At the root of all our failings and rebellion is selfishness. It is when we put what we want and what we think ahead of other people and our God. Why is it so hard to obey our God, to accept what he wants? Because our perspective is that God just wants us to be happy whereas God's perspective is summed up in "Say no to yourself, take up your cross and do what I have done".
Can we take a sludge hammer to this point and drive it home? Can we use this to underline the difference between the world and the Kingdom of God? The world loves. The world cares. The world has compassion. But all these things are still filtered through a self-centered heart. Only Jesus can save us from ourselves. Only Jesus can strip the selfishness away from us. Only Jesus can enable us to love without us getting in the way.
Apostle Paul wrote:
He died for the sake of all so that those who are alive should live not for themselves but for the one who died for them and was raised. (2 Corinthians 5:15)
So do we live for ourselves? Live for our family? Live for some noble theme? No, we live for Jesus and only Jesus. He defines everything we are, everything we do, everything we say, everything we think and feel. It is not about what we perceive as being how God created us but who we have become and been transformed into through and in Jesus.
This is why it is hard for us to have a conversation with a person without Jesus. It is very difficult to find any common ground to start the conversation. They reject everything that defines us. So the only way it can produce anything is if the conviction of the Spirit is in it. This means we need to be sensitive to the Spirit more now than ever before. We need to be directed by him and not by our own wisdom.
May things become clearer for us as the days get darker.