“Because of Christ Jesus I have found reason for boasting in things pertaining to God. And I will not presume to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me.” (Romans 15:17-18a)
Social media is all about Likes, Followers, hits, views, and comments. We are the “selfie” generation.
Humility is nice to see in others, but rather too limiting to practice ourselves. We watch those who push themselves forward. They get the attention, the privileges, and the benefits.
People tell us “God loves you, and has a great plan for your life.” We like that…a lot…though we barely hear the first statement. Instead, we latch onto the latter clause. We want to believe in our own importance, prominence, and greatness. “Yes. Of course God has a great plan for me. Tell me more!” It’s the affirmation we crave and the future we want. We refuse to eat the dust of others.
Over time, we come to believe that humility doesn’t help anyone. As Donald Trump recently noted (quoting Mussolini): “Better to be a lion for a day than a sheep for a century.”
Yet, in the kingdom of God, humility is everything. True humility requires at least two core traits; an accurate perspective of ourselves, and sincere trust of Christ.
We don’t need to force our way into the future. We have nothing but what has been given to us. Our future, even today, is not in our hands but God’s.
In Romans 15:17-18, the Apostle Paul mentions that he will speak of nothing except what Christ has accomplished through him. His personal credentials, learning, heritage, and achievements are entirely incidental. Nothing would be or could be accomplished but for the grace of God and the blessing of Christ.
It’s altogether too easy for us to become enamored with our own skill sets, abilities, or success. It’s a fallacy, an illusion, to think of them as ours in the first place. And as we increasingly take center-stage, Christ cannot.
The Bible reminds us that “God opposes the proud and gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6). Such grace does not end in fame or fortune. The pursuit of humility must never be a cloaked effort at self-service. Rather, could I be content with both obedience and obscurity? Could I live a quiet life and mind my own business (1 Thessalonians 4:11), and be entirely at peace?
Humility lies at the core of the Kingdom and kingdom-living, because it lies at the heart of Jesus (Philippians 2:3-8).
As we continue through this Holy Week, may we embrace the authentic humility of Christ and deflect all glory to Christ. Therein lies life, peace, and joy.