REPOST Today’s Spiritual Food for Thought, written by Pastor Sam Lee who leads Catalyst Agape Church in Northern New Jersey, was first posted on July 31, 2014. He is a graduate of University of Wisconsin (BA) and Biblical Theological Seminary (M.Div.).
Devotional Thought for This Morning
1 Peter 5:6
Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time.
For those who want to climb up the ladder of success, the least desired trait or attitude may be humility, because for many people, it means becoming a doormat. But humility is a beautiful and powerful characteristic in the Kingdom of Heaven. If you desire to be humble, then you desire to be like Christ.
Humility is the kingdom’s way to greatness: Jesus, putting a child in the midst of the disciples, said: “Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven” (Matt. 18:4). In looking back to those who had the greatest influence in my life, they weren’t people who were necessarily the most intelligent or the most talented, but they were those who were genuinely humble. Humility has power; power to stop wars, and power to open doors for transformation and growth. When we embody humility, we are “allowing” God to complete the work He is doing in us because, while “God opposes the proud. . . [he] gives grace to the humble” (James. 4:6). And the grace of God is what ultimately changes us to be useful for his kingdom work.
But let’s not mistake humility with insecurity. For instance, when Moses encountered God through the burning bush, Moses was not humble, but he was insecure: he was focused on what he couldn’t do rather than on what God could do through him. Many of us don’t realize that insecurity is an unhealthy focus on self, fed by fear, doubt, and faithlessness. On the other hand, humility enables us to hear and see what God can do in us, opening the door to real faith; a faith that doesn’t depend on self, but on the promises of God. Humility allows us to believe in something greater than ourselves.
Prayer: “Blessed are the poor in spirit. Blessed are those who mourn. Blessed are the meek. Blessed are the merciful. Blessed are the pure in heart. Blessed are the peacemakers. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness.” Jesus, help me to be humble. Amen.
Bible Reading for Today: Jeremiah 44
Lunch Break Study
Read Mark 10:42-43: Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them.43 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 44 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.
Questions to Consider
- What are the differences between having a low self-esteem as opposed to biblical humility?
- How does humility show greatness?
- One factor that fuels low self-esteem is comparing oneself to others, especially those who have worldly success. Who is going to feel good about oneself after that? Biblical humility stems from realizing that we are unworthy to merit salvation and too weak to do anything worthy of God. But instead of giving up, we look to God to strengthen us.
- Humility on our part can lead to greatness when people see how God has demonstrated his power through us and in spite of us. In Acts 4:13, Peter and John were described as unschooled and ordinary by their opponents, but God was glorified when they noticed the boldness of Peter and John, despite of them.
Examine yourself to see in what area of your life you need more humility.