We can all agree that whether seen in ourselves or in others, arrogance leaves a bad taste in our mouths. Conversely, there is nothing quite as refreshing, disarming, and attractive as genuine humility! James 4:6b says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Humility is not self-degradation. It is, however, recognition of our inability to do what is right apart from God’s provision and an openness to receive what Jesus wants for, in, and through us by His Spirit! Humility is depicted by child-likeness that allows us to remain teachable, moldable, and responsive to God’s heart!
How is a humble heart cultivated?
Jesus said in Matthew 20:25-28, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. It shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first among you must become your slave, even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” We practice our humility before God by seeing the face of Christ in each person and so serving Him continually. Murray in his book Humility said, “May God teach us that our thoughts and words and feelings concerning our fellow-men are His test of our humility toward Him. May He teach us that our humility before Him is the only power that can enable us to be always humble with our fellow-men. Our humility must be the life of Christ, the Lamb of God, within us.” Every day we have opportunity to serve Christ by being the servant of all.
Is change possible?
We have a tendency when reading about humility to strive to be more humble. This only continues a cycle of being self-focused. We must come quickly to the conviction that it is impossible and then in despair, turn our eyes upon Jesus who alone gives us the grace to be transformed. Jesus said in Matthew 11:28-29, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” May we daily fix our eyes on Jesus and receive grace from Him. May we not miss the opportunity to see His face as we encounter people every day!