Archive for the ‘Humility’ Category

THE GOD OF MEEKNESS

Friday, December 10th, 2010

Day 270

“Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth”
Matthew 5:5

It is not the nature of man to be meek. Our nature is the opposite. We are aggressive, assertive, claim our rights, and make demands for our privileges and position. Being meek is in direct contrast to the mindset of the western culture.

“Blessed are the meek” lies in not trusting our own strength, abilities, and power to organize and defeat sin. Christ demonstrated meekness through His life on earth and when He gave us the Beatitudes, He reflected the very nature and character of God. We are to imitate His character: “It should be … the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight” (1 Peter 3:4).

Meekness is not spinelessness, mildness, and being docile or timid. The Spirit of God produces true meekness. Meekness is related to all the Beatitudes. The first, poor in spirit recognizes our own weaknesses and inability while the second, mourning is realizing our own sinfulness. Being meek brings the summation of these two parts to our consciousness so we may walk in it that knowledge. It is radical and directly opposed to the world of self-esteem, self-worth and self-promotion. It is the true gospel and the way we are called to walk before God.

“For I am gentle and humble in heart”
Matthew 11:29

HIS NAME IS HOLY

Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010

Day 239

“For thus says the High and Lofty One
Who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy;
I dwell in the high and holy place,
With him who has a contrite and humble spirit”
Isaiah 57:15

Our God is elevated and exalted over universe, earth, created objects and beings. In fact, all of the universe and earth do not contain Him, for these He created and are within Him. He lives in timelessness, inhabiting eternity. His name is Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God. His thoughts and ways are loftier than ours, even as the heavens are higher than the earth. Our God is both a mighty and majestic God.

This is God’s pronouncement in Isaiah.

Yet, in the midst of this powerful declaration, He says, “I dwell . . . with him who has a contrite and humble spirit.” He leads and gives us rest in His pasture. In the midst of the magnificent declaration, when for a moment He seemed unreachable, we find ourselves under His very wing.

“. . . and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all fullness of God”
Ephesians 3:19

GOD’S WAY

Monday, July 19th, 2010

Day 137

“And you shall remember all the way which the Lord
your God has led you in the wilderness these
forty years, that He might humble you”
Deuteronomy 8:2-3

God led His people through a wilderness. Needless to say, the wilderness was a very dry place and not pleasing for comfort. After freeing them of 400 years bondage, you think He would directly take them to their new land. but, He didn’t. And for good reasons, as this scripture further enlightens us. He was testing them to know what was in their hearts.

Wait a minute! God didn’t know what was in their hearts? Far from it. In fact, He not only knew, He wanted them to know. They needed to see themselves and know how corrupt their natures were. And thousands of years later, it’s the same today. God sets us free with His salvation. He takes us out of Egypt, the world. But, there is still the need for Egypt, the world, to be taken out of our hearts. And until we see ourselves for who we really are, we cannot be humble.

This is God’s love for us. Christ said, “Without Me, you can do nothing” [John 15:5b]. He loves us so deeply that He must take us through the wilderness for us to see what is in our hearts. When we come to that place where we can cry out with Isaiah, “Woe is me, for I am ruined! Because I am a man of unclean lips” [Isaiah 6:5], then, and only then, can we lean wholly on Him for our sufficiency.

“Man does not live by bread alone, but man lives
by everything that proceeds out of the mouth of the Lord”
Deuteronomy 8:3b

GOD’S HEART

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

Day 97

“Though the Lord is on high,
He looks upon the lowly”
Psalm 138:6

What draws God’s heart to us? More than any one other aspect of our life, it is being humble. That is the heart of our Father and Savior. He is a God of such magnitude that it is literally impossible to comprehend His depth. Yet, our great God who created us lowered Himself to become man – to become one of us – so we would have hope. He humbled Himself and He consistently demonstrated humility during His earthly life as an example of His heart.

Man, on the other hand, is self-righteous. We are independent, self-sufficient, and occupied with ourselves and our thoughts. The parable of the Pharisee and Publican is a clear example of self-righteousness versus humility [Luke 18:9-14]. We really need to know ourselves and the Holy Spirit will open our eyes if we permit Him. Then we will stop looking at our own goodness and see how sin has blinded us with self-righteousness. We need to know the depth of our own corruption and sin to the point of crying out to God for mercy.

The Publican prayed, “God be merciful to me the sinner,” and God drew near Him. He knew the truth about himself and he was saved because of it. When he prayed, it was a request – petition – begging God’s mercy. Reach out today for God’s mercy in your life. God will draw near and then you will be exalted in Him.

“Humble yourselves therefore under the
mighty hand of God, that He may
exalt you in due time”
1 Peter 5:6

THE MASTER AS A SERVANT

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

Day 84

“But I am among you as one who serves”
Luke 22:27

Servanthood is an area of our walk with Christ that many people miss. In fact, even the disciples wrestled with this issue and with the way in which Christ carried it out in His life. They were perplexed, unable to understand what Christ was doing. The same difficulty exists with us today. We gain knowledge and understanding, but it never seems to reach the depth of our character.

It was the time of the Passover when this really came to light. Preparations were made. They secured a guest room, prepared for the Passover and gathered together at the table of the Last Supper. It was here where the struggle took place. Jesus got up from the meal [John 13:4], changed clothes, and washed the feet of the disciples. They were embarrassed; Peter even resisted Him. Jesus replied that unless He was allowed to wash his feet, Peter was to have no part of Him. It wasn’t the first time this happened. The disciples knew ‘someone’ should have done it. But the Master? No, no, He shouldn’t have to become a servant.

Have you read that we should be servants? The disciples heard it. They didn’t have a problem with understanding it, but often failed to carry it out. But when the Master was a servant it was too much for them. Their understanding of servanthood did not embrace true humility. Jesus came to do what Adam and mankind had failed to do – obey God. So the Lord and King of the universe and heavens became a servant.

Like the disciples, the same thing has happened to us – we have had our feet washed by the God of the universe. He has cleansed us, and now He tells us we are to do the same – we are to be servants.

“The greatest among you should be like
the youngest, and the one who rules
like the one who serves”
Luke 22:27

HIS TENDERNESS

Monday, April 19th, 2010

Day 61

“Do not let your hearts any longer be troubled.
Trust in God; trust also in me”
John 14:1

It was the Last Supper. Jesus announced Judas’ imminent betrayal, and Peter’s denial. His disciples didn’t fully understand why He had to go and die; they resisted even the thought of it. They were sad, confused, and troubled by the events. Jesus Himself was troubled in the spirit.

In the midst of these unfolding events and troubled hearts, two very powerful acts of love took place. Christ humbled Himself at the supper and washed the feet of His disciples, even the feet of the one who would betray Him. He did what they failed to do. In so doing, He forever set the pattern of true love and ministry. And then, in an unselfish and tender manner, He spoke to their very hearts with words of comfort and reassurance.

This brought the disciples to a realization of their own selfishness. Having the Master wash their feet was a humbling experience. His love revealed their self-occupation; it was almost offensive to them. Yet Christ neither focused on their failures, nor on their weaknesses; but brought comfort and assurance to them. Isn’t He the same with us?

“I am going there to prepare a place for you”

John 14:2

THE GREATNESS OF OUR SINS

Monday, March 1st, 2010

Day 18

We See, but . . .
Isaiah 6:1

We cannot enjoy true rest if we do not see the greatness of our sins. When Jesus healed the blind man, He said, “If you were blind, you wouldn’t have any sin, but you say you see, therefore your sin remains.” We are like that. We tend to be very blind about ourselves.

We need to see the true depth of our corruption. How we seek comfort instead of sacrifice, security instead of grace, self-honor instead of righteousness, and pleasure instead of God’s fellowship. When Isaiah saw God, he saw His holiness – and it shook him. “Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips” (6:5). God’s holiness brings the knowledge of our sins and unworthiness. It breaks us. If we truly see God, we will be broken.

The Lord has regard for those who see Him. Truly seeing Him humbles us and recognizes the magnitude and greatness of His saving grace, mercy and compassion towards us. Because He desires and wants to give us good gifts, He seeks and pursues us. He wants us to see that He is our all, and we are to look beyond the earthly temporal realm and its attractions. If we know our need and poverty, He will look to us with regard.

“This is the one I regard: he who is
humble and contrite in spirit”
Isaiah 66:2b

GIVING GRACE TO THE HUMBLE

Saturday, February 27th, 2010

Day 16

“Gives grace to the humble”
1 Peter 5:5

It doesn’t take much Bible-reading before we encounter scriptural directions that seem paradoxical. One is humility; it is contrary to our nature, culture and age to be humble. After all, we have rights. We are to told be aggressive and ‘make our way’ in life. We are to set goals and achieve them.

Jesus said the rich fool was not rich toward God. We probably do not think we fit that story, but this man did not know himself either. He was selfish, thought himself in control of his life, slaved to gain possessions, and did not look to the needs of others. What about us? The man who really knows himself and his own heart will never be a proud man. He will count himself unworthy of the least of all God’s mercies. In other words, the proud man, like the rich man, is an ignorant man and the humble person is in the know because he strives to know God.

Here is the freedom Christ purchased for us: in lowliness of mind, he will esteem everyone else to be better than himself (Philippians 2:3). Walking in that freedom is to walk in humility by serving others – and in that we find God. Jesus, on the last night before His death, washed the feet of His disciples as a servant. He forever set the way we are to live by this example.

“You, my brothers, were called to be free.
But do not use your freedom to indulge
your sinful nature, rather serve
one another in love”
Galatians 5:13