Humbleness

Humbleness

Humbleness, or humility, is a virtue that appears incongruent with the nature of humanity.  Much of the conflict that emerges in relationships relates to the lack of humbleness.  Rather than give you a definition of humbleness, just consider that the lack of humbleness usually is seated in self-centeredness.  Anything or any ways of self promotion or aggrandizement for our benefit is an anathema, abhorrent to the way of humbleness.

Society has hijacked humility, changing the truth about what humbleness is, a strength of character that promotes fairness and equality, to a perception that humility reveals weakness. In fact, humility is risky business.  Humility requires that we put ourselves in a position of vulnerability.  Humility takes courage, a strong awareness of purpose and worth in the eyes of God, and trust that no matter the circumstance, our way of humility is the way of Christ.

Jesus revealed humility in his interactions with people.  Those seeking him were not turned away because of their place, or lack of status in society.  He ate with the disenfranchised, the lepers, he taught women, healed indiscriminately all who sought relief from life’s pains and sorrows.  The penultimate act of humility was when Jesus stood before Pilate and others who could release him from sure death, he stood silent.  His humility in strength, not weakness enabled us to be reconciled by God.  Jesus could have brought the full force of God down on the nation of Rome and the people demanding his death.  Jesus’ choice to be obedient unto death for our salvation is our most profound witness to the way of humility.  

When we react with retaliation, verbal or physical, to win the upper hand, we have lost our way as Christians.  This need to be in control over others has been with us since Adam and Eve were cast out of the garden.  A lack of humility separates us from the love of God, and the way of Christ.  Consequences abound.  

We are witnessing a world of upheaval these days that originates with a practice of inequality  against people of color.  The fuse has burned long and deep, causing generations of pain for our black brothers and sisters, a form of enforced humility pressed upon them.  We, who are privileged white, have mistakenly bought into the message of “we are better, smarter, etc.” and have taken this sense of entitlement to heart.  Some have only just begun to examine the ways of speaking, interacting and relating to the black community individually and moreover as a whole that reflect Christ.

We have allowed the “way we were taught or brought up” to be our shield against a more vital mounting pressure of a spiritual nature.  This call of Christ to show humility and repentance must now overshadow our former “comfortable” ways of speaking, our communal ways of accompanying the disenfranchised, only seeing ourselves as beneficent givers.  We must accept that generations of black men, women and children have suffered under the heavy hand of oppression in education, job opportunities, healthcare, and even the freedom to vote.    

As followers of the first Way-Maker of life and salvation, we can no longer excuse our lack of awareness, turn a cold cheek to the ways we may be propitiating a practice that diminishes black people, for that matter, anyone. If God can humbly take our form, becoming both Human and Divine, how can we not humbly take on the same form of love and mercy that has been given to us?

A Prayer for our Spirit.

Lord, give us the courage to examine our hearts.  We can not change the world without You. We desire to please You, so change us Lord.  We trust you with our all.  So, Lord, bring to light the hurtful and harmful ways that we have, without thought, or with intent, diminished our brothers and sisters of color.  

Help us to repent of our actions. We humbly invite Your Holy Spirit into this vulnerable moment of our soul.  As we confess, we humbly pray that you would release us from the shame of our own actions, planting within us a new conviction and a fresh insight into the adjustments we need to make in our thoughts, words and actions. 

We worship You, Lord Jesus, and give thanks for the grace you continue to bestow on us.  We have not earned your love, you have given it freely.  May we embrace Your love and give freely to the world, unencumbered by our past, emboldened by You for our future.  May we be your love and light for Your Glory.

Amen.

Pastor Lisa 

“Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.” Philippians 2: 5-8

“He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” Micah 6:8

“Humbly We Adore Thee”. May the simplicity of the song bring you near to God.
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