I recall an acronym several years back for the word JOY. How to be joyful was to put these in this order: Jesus, then Others, then You.
Jesus should be first in our lives no matter what. He is our perfect example of how to live our lives. That is the very definition of being a Christian. Paul tells us at the beginning of Romans 15 this very thing. We ought to put others ahead of ourselves; in doing so we will be emulating the actions of Jesus Christ.
Lets look at verses 1 and 2.
Romans 15:1,2 “We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbour for his good to edification.”
What Paul is talking about here is self-sacrifice. Giving of yourself for the sake of others. The first verse says we ought “not to please ourselves” or do what we want in spite of others. The next verse fills the void that normally would be there and says “let every one of us please his neighbor.” Instead of doing what pleases us, sometimes we have to do things that naturally we don’t want to do. I believe it is natural for us to do what pleases us, doing things that takes care of number one. We find it difficult to do things the opposite of what we want or what comes easy. For the sake of “edifying” or building up a weaker Christian, we ought to do what is in their best interest instead of our own.
In doing these things, we imitate Christ’s behavior. Look at verse 3.
Romans 15:3 “For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me.”
Christ bore the “reproaches” or sufferings for our sake. He could have called the angels to rescue Him but He chose not to. He did this for our salvation. We are weaker than He is, and He gave of Himself to strengthen us. This is the perfect example for us to follow in our daily lives: putting Jesus first, then Others, then Yourself.