Still proudly trying to be humble?

Sometimes it shocks me at my ripe old age to see how much I still have to learn. Doesn’t that sound ridiculous? Am I so proud I think I’ve learned it all? Not really, but I am trying to see the truth of humility. I was praying daily that the Lord would make me humble. Was I mixing humility up with spiritual gifts? Was I expecting a dark gray cloak to float down from Heaven and envelop me to prove that I was finally humble? Suddenly the gracious Holy Spirit startled me with a fresh insight. Being humble is not something I pray for but something I choose. See if you agree with me on the thoughts that came from just a few of the many verses I dug into.

(2CHRON.7:14) - If My people shall humble themselves. Themselves - - they have to do the humbling. God does not do it for them. But if they humble themselves they are then in a position to pray – seek – and expect God to answer.

(PS.9:12) - The Lord does not forget the cry of the humble. This promise is not given to the proud. Why not? Because only the humble are humble enough to acknowledge they have needs which only God can meet.

(PS.10:17) - Lord You have heard the longing and desire of the humble and You will strengthen their hearts because You hear. I’m seeing that the Lord always responds to genuine humility.

(PS.69:32) - The humble who seek the Lord will be glad and their hearts revive and live. When we come to God in true humility we receive more than we ask.

(ISA.57:15) – This is one of my favourite verses. The High and Holy One dwells with him who is of a humble spirit. Not gifted or endued with a humble spirit but is OF a humble spirit. I’m getting the sense that a humble spirit is a chosen pattern of life. Would you agree?

(MAT.5:3) - Blessed are the humble. No sense of self-importance in fact thinking of themselves as insignificant and yet – theirs is the kingdom of heaven. So it’s not the self-styled “kings” who own the kingdom.

(MAT.18:4) - Whoever humbles himself will be greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Achieving greatness requires stooping low.

(MAT.23:12) – Whoever willingly humbles himself will be raised to honour. I think if a person was willingly humble the thought of honour would never cross their mind.

(JAS.4:10) – Humble yourself in the Presence of the Lord and He will make your life significant. I’m beginning to grasp the principles but how to go about it is something else.

Let’s eavesdrop on the Personification of humility – His Name is Jesus. It’s the night of the Last Supper. The usual custom at a gathering if there was no servant there, the first 1 or 2 to arrive would wash their own feet and then the feet of others as they arrived. The 12 arrived but certainly none of them had any intention of taking the place of a servant. They had in mind something far more important to them. What? Jesus had just told them that one of them would betray Him. They questioned among themselves who it might be but then got into a fierce argument about which of them (LK.22:24) was the greatest. Jesus was the last to arrive. As he heard their boasting, without a word (JN.13:4) Jesus left His supper, got up and washed their feet. Then He went back to His supper and explained why and what He had done. Are we getting it? Humble deeds are not to be announced beforehand - - that would make the whole thing rotten with pride - - making sure others would see and know (and hopefully tell others) what he had done.

There is one more Scripture I’d like to mention because it has been rattling around in my head.

(1PTR.5:6) – Humble yourself under the mighty hand of God. YOU DO IT! Those words have been a merry-go-round in my thoughts to-day as I try to understand it fully. This is what it says to me. Because I know God is Sovereign, I should accept my circumstances whatever they be – also – because the mighty hand of Almighty God can arrange, change or cancel my circumstances according to His purpose. To-day was quite an opportunity for me to leave the circumstances to Him. This morning I had a scheduled meeting with someone who didn’t show up until I went looking for them. It was not their fault – a family matter – but I waited an hour postponing other things I had planned to accomplish. This afternoon a booked ride did not show up even though I waited long past the time. So I had to take a long expensive ride in a taxi -- in addition to arriving much later than usual. Through it all, the verse was no longer rattling but singing in my head and heart as I chose to accept the circumstances – knowing that God is in charge.

I do want to be like Jesus and I see that being humble is not a spiritual gift, a personal choice. I choose - - the Holy Spirit enables me to live my choice - - Jesus is exalted - - and I am still learning.

What is humility? Jesus has shown us clearly that it is the glorious privilege of serving others for His great Name’s sake. As I seek the Lord’s enabling to live my choice I must remember that God resists the proud (JAS.4:6) and gives grace to the humble.

I really think the secret of genuine humility is found in (PHIL.2:5-7) LET this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus Who made Himself of no reputation - - and therefore - - ourselves your servants for Jesus sake.

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