When we are mainly concerned for our own personal profit or pleasure, we behave selfishly. Although widely considered to be a good motivating force, a closer look shows that selfishness dampens enthusiasm and easily brings the worst out of others in the long run.
It is a well-known fact that we live in a world where we are dependent on each other and Mother Nature. If we think carefully, we can see that we live under a debt to various people we take service from (pause for a moment and think about it). So, what is our contribution to them? As the author N. Eldon Tanner, puts it succinctly, “Service is the rent we pay for the privilege of living on Earth.”
Selfishness is that evil force within us, which spoils the interdependence equation. If all people act selfishly, everyone will have to suffer and sooner or later, humanity (both within and without) will vanish. It is certain that by leading selfish lives, neither can we flourish for long, nor can we bring out our best.
A person who cultivates selfless service attitude will never face procrastination in his life. Instead this service attitude acts as an accelerator to carry out all one’s duties. Duty itself becomes a reward when we perform it in the mood of service. One can overcome any amount of personal discomfort with the help of selfless service attitude.
Seeing from another perspective, those who feel grateful for receiving so much service, carry a high sense of responsibility for their every act, speech and thought. A person who acts out of responsibility with gratitude will never be lazy and will be diligent in his duties, not succumbing to temptations to selfishly gratify one’s senses.
When the heart is filled with gratitude for all that we have received from God and his children, one does not perceive responsibilities towards them to be a burden. Rather he performs them to the best of his abilities and does not want to give them up for the cheap pleasures which may allure and dissuade him from his duties. There is a particular pattern in activities of grateful people. One, they act to their best today. And second, they perform even better tomorrow!