A thought has been reinforced all week as I have been listening to the I Am Series done by Jame Macdonald. It is the the idea of humility and how it is the key to finding and living in the given Identity of Christ versus our self image and user defined Identity we find in the world. There is point one right away, humility is key to thinking and walking with Christ! I could stop there, but it has been the development of this truth that has me writing and spending focused devotional time today. To start developing this further I have to define humility as it is misunderstood numerous times in our lives.
Joh 3:30 He must increase, but I must decrease.
Joh 3:31 He that cometh from above is above all: he that is of the earth is earthly, and speaketh of the earth: he that cometh from heaven is above all.
Humility, defined by God’s word, therefore the true definition in context to life is: esteeming your self as nothing and having God esteemed above all. Self esteem, self image, and self worth all must be decreased to nothing for true humility before God. See why its difficult? We cannot put our self aside for a even a day, but God can with His grace. You will realize as you lay yourself aside, Christ replaces our gap with abundantly more. Christ administers life to us as we exchange our death. A quote from the sermon I received this Sunday sparked many of these thoughts of humility, ” We do not change for the better, Jesus Christ just increases in us”. Its concise and pointed delivery is amazing as it is something I cannot fully comprehend. regardless of my lack of understanding I have come to appreciate its depth and truth for experiencing life. To think I cannot change myself to become better in the sight of God . . . The truth in this statement is that, we as sinners do not change for the better in God’s eyes( the only eyes worth satisfying). We actually wane worse and worse without Christ. There are higher and lower forms of this progression, but it is a truth nonetheless. Apart from Christ, I am a miserable and evil man. Can you wrap your head around that? it is true for each and every one of us, we are miserable and evil apart from God’s work in us. Look into the mirror and say that to your face. can you do it even more can you believe it? Many times I cannot but as I get older I realize this is true more and more as things I thought unimaginable have crossed my mind, been said sometimes and in some cases acted on. It only takes a detachment from me, an act in humility towards God to see it clearly. An act of surrender to see the disgrace and the hopeless one that is me. Have you ever felt that hopelessness catch up to you as a Christian. Maybe you are not a Christian and have that hopelessness meet you in the mirror every morning without the one that came to give hope and life. Why do I exist? what am I doing with my life? where am I going with things? What is the point of everything? . . . I don’t have the answers, few can have the answers to these things ultimately. What I do know is I don’t need answers, I need a SAVIOR, a COMFORTER, a FRIEND, an EVER LOVING FATHER, I NEED JESUS CHRIST. I have seen the other programs, the other religions, the other pursuits and none administer and faithfully give LIFE as Christ does for me. Christ must increase in our life if we want and desire to see true change. internally rejuvenating and lasting change externally as every program and system we devise falls short and fails.
1Pe 5:6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:
This verse leads right into the next development of humility I have received this week, it is centered around the end of the verse” exalt you in due time”. To be exalted by God is to be delivered from ourselves . . . To be exalted by God is to be delivered from ourselves. . . This is Gods amazing grace that detaches us from our old nature, our sin, and our corrupted minds. This is true freedom and liberty in Christ as we think and act with Him! So much of our struggles are fueled and ignited by our lack of humility before Christ. With this we find a result of unbelief of God’s mighty hand of deliverance from that flaw or circumstance that besets us. To be exalted by God, delivered from our trials and delivered from our struggle we run into this phrase “in due time”. Three main points from James Macdonald’s series was deliverance is delayed for a greater: 1. Victory 2. Display of our depravity and 3. surrender. These are amazing revelations from God’s word! To know that in due time I will be victorious in God’s sight, I will see my depravity before God and in result have an amazing humble surrender! To know and be secure that God will win in the struggle is truly the battle. God fully intends to deliver us in due time. Looking towards the Exodus account we see God’s greatest historical display of deliverance with the nation of Israel. It took nine displays of extreme power to convince and bend the situation the Hebrews had in Egypt. Nine disasters, Nine emotional roller coasters, NINE! All this delay was truly for the greater glory of God as Egypt was destroyed, Israel escapes, and God is glorified for it all. By the end of Exodus we see that Moses, Aaron, and the tribes of Israel had no grounds for taking credit for anything as God clearly displayed His mighty hand. This is amazing, we don’t have to search for receiving credit,reputation, or status as God in the end of His plan will receive the greater glory. We will be exalted above our trials, receive victory and overcome struggle but the credit is beautifully laid down before Gods throne, crowns throne at his feet as the glory and honor is all His! We can still celebrate and enjoy these achievements in life,but the glory is God’s. I could go into how we revel to much in these things and try to usurp the glory, but Exodus gives a good account of that with Pharaoh (check it out). It should be our base desire before God in humility to give Him the greater glory. This should be why we wake up and do the things we do, and this is the truth for those who claim Jesus Christ as Lord.
2Ti 4:7 I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
2Ti 4:8 Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.
Rev 4:10b . . .and cast their crowns before the throne, saying,
Rev 4:11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.
When we see God our Lord we will respond this way, we receive a blessing as Paul explains in Timothy and we cast it right back to Him who is worthy of it all! Why do we not live this way now? why do we neglect and forget the One who is worthy of our fervent and complete worship? The answer among many things, is that we do not know who we are. We do not know what God has imparted to us for His pleasure and His glory. We do not know how to stand in stability in humility. Our pride combats it, our lusts distract us from it, and the enemy reinforces these things against it. Oh what a humble man could do, secure in his spirit and empowered by You! We have a reiterated promise of ultimate victory in life if spent in humility before God. Here are just a couple:
Psa 10:17 LORD, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear:
Pro 16:19 Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud.
Pro 29:23 A man’s pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit.
Mat 23:12 And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.
Jas 4:6 But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.
1Pe 5:5 Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.
The list is extensive,and the lines upon lines and precepts upon precepts of humility all point towards greater LIFE. A Saved, born again, Redeemed saint of God starts in humility, as it is the only way to accept a gift of grace. To regard our self no more and hold God’s grace in highest regard, what a life that would be and what a moment that is to experience. You need grace, you may not know it but you need it. I need it daily. To look in the past and see I am not who I was is amazing as in reality I am still the same but Christ has greatly increased in me. Part of me has died! I have exchanged depravity for grace, death for life, and Worthless for worthy! Live transformed to His way in humility before Him and HE WILL EXALT YOU….in due time 🙂
If you read this and do not have a clue what is going on or have questions about a walk or life with Christ feel free to leave comments. or if you would like to receive Christ today simply pray “God Save me. I need Christ’s life as what I have is not life. I believe Jesus is the provision for my sin and has the power to deliver me from it. Be my helper in time of trouble, be my comforter, and be my Lord as I am Yours today. humbly before you I pray, Amen
Rom 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. This a promise from a God who does not lie