Thursday, October 4, 2012

Unattainable Quality?

Some things I don't understand.

Like Baseball on TV... Really!  Who decided that was remotely entertaining?
And letting 3rd graders learn how to "play" the Recorder....  Worst screeching noise ever.... like a dying Banshee.

But I want to know why one of the most desirable Christian qualities seems to be unattainable. Just when you think you've got it... you've lost it.

I'm talking, of course, of humility.

First, to examine the opposite characteristic: that of pride.  Pride is referred to multiple times, particularly in the Proverbs, as being an abomination to God. There seems to be no middle ground to cling to.  You are either humble or proud. So is this a sin that we are constantly in servitude to?  Can we never gain victory over it? If our relationship with God is constantly out of whack... are we never to enjoy the privileges of children of God?

Sounds extreme.... but... well... it makes sense if you follow the thought to it's natural conclusion....

You know what... it's hopeless. We all fail at Christianity. Let's quit trying!.... to do it ourselves....

And now that that is out of our system, we can figure out how to "attain" the unattainable....

And. you. can't. do. it.

This is where God comes in. Actually, He should have been at the beginning, if we were to truly put Him in His rightful place.

We have before us, the best example of humility to be found anywhere. There are 4 biographical books written on Him in the New Testament. Of course I am referring to our Lord, Jesus Christ, Creator of the universe.

One thing that stands out to us, as it has to Christians for millennia is the incident when He washes the disciples' feet. God, kneeling down to wash filth off of the lowest of the low's feet.  Wow. This is humility.

It still feels a bit ambiguous to me, though. Here's some definitions/anti definitions of humility.

  • Humility is not insisting you don't deserve something. Christ never set that example anywhere that I can see. He deserved everything, and yet gave up all... which leads to my next point
  • Humility is knowing what you deserve, and yet giving all up for the benefit of another.
  • Humility is when we realize that life is not all about us, but rather about God, which leads us to serve others.
  • Humility and confidence are not mutually exclusive
When your life becomes about something Bigger than your life, it will change your life. What humility really is is a switch of focus. Pride is complete focus on yourself, Humility is focus on God, which produces the fruit of service.

One final facet of humility comes with confession of sin. In our pride, we rationalize all of our sin: the blatant outward sins on bad days or other people, the quiet inner sins that "didn't affect anyone else". I wrote a post here about being willing to apologize for your "justifiable" sin, but before our relationship with others can be mended, we need to repair the relationship with God. It takes a lot of humility to view yourself in the light that God views you and your sin.

So, is humility unattainable? Yes... in your own strength. God gives us the proper tenderness of heart for us to properly represent Him in this world with humility.

Because of Him,

1 comment:

  1. I stumbled upon your blog today. Enjoyed reading your post. Good stuff, thanks for sharing. God bless