24 October 2011

Multitude Monday - 1000 Gifts: Thinking about Humble Pie for Thanksgiving

Missed church this weekend because of some sickies - and ended up reading this (WARNING - do not click unless you'd like to have your toes stomped on at least a few times).
"Humility is one of those qualities that every leader says they admire, but few want to experience.
Think about it. Ask any group of leaders if humility is important, and almost every one of them will nod their heads and tell you that the world needs more humble leaders in every field, from business to politics to, well, everywhere. Ask that same group if they would like an opportunity to be humbled, and virtually every one of them will decline."
It is a painfully truthful, thought provoking, and if I will allow the truth it contains to penetrate and change, humbling perspective. As I've meditated some on what the Lord might be trying to say to me, He keeps drawing my thoughts back to Philippians 2...

"Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. Have this attitude of in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Hmself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient..."
The first thought that crossed my mind as I've chewed on the above quote (and article) was that Christ humbled Himself... I most often must be humbled by an outside source - be it  my children, my students, my spouse, my God. I don't choose humility unless it is forced upon me. The Lord has taught much in the past few years about accepting His humbling will for my life with gentleness - but I certainly don't ask for it - well, unless it accidentally comes out as mindless verbiage when trying to pray aloud in the presence of other people, and trying to sound good. Ironic, right?

My other key thought was that as I read through the above scriptural quote (NASB), it seems awkward. "...being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man..." As I've read and reread it - it hasn't grown any less so. I guess I'd never noticed the repetition before. Repetition obviously emphasizes the importance of the humanity of Christ as Savior and Messiah.

Looking at the context, however, another thought has also managed to fight its way to the surface, a thought that will require lots more ponderings for this particular person. The first occurrence is contained in a sentence talking clearly about His humility to God the Father. The second sentence certainly includes this in His obedience to the sovereignty of the Father's plan and will for His earthly life, but I think it also manifests His humility, submission and obedience to the will of men - evil, selfish, power-hungry, pride-filled men. Understood - His submission to men was the result of His obedience to God. It also included His choice to allow those weaker and so far below and less than Him to have their way. I don't know how He did it. It is easier to accept, to be "humbled" by one I respect, by one I consider more: more powerful, stronger, more intelligent, more educated, more experienced... or at least an equal.

It is not so easy to swallow being humbled by one I consider less... (like my child). Jesus allowed His creation to humiliate Him ~
  • degrade, defame, reduce in rank or status, demote
  • to lower in dignity, dishonor or disgrace
  • to deprive of self-esteem or self-worth
Humbleness defined as the gentle acceptance of losing face, choosing downward mobility and transparently allowing those I look at as "less" to be the tools of my demotion.

That is the standard I'm reading in the article to which I've linked. That is what I'm hearing confirmed in my heart. I can't say I like it, for it is a chalky and bitter pill to swallow. Do I have the courage to seek, praying for (and really meaning it), these types of opportunities to learn and practice humility, to be like my Savior?

this week's gratitdue list
(#'s 1579 - 1603)

little by little progress

learning to appreciate the practice of downward mobility

funny, snuggly little one

clean floors

a new marking period at school

better grades than expected

seeing what classes where we still need lots of work

distance, both physical and emotional, even when it hurts

homemade bookshelves - no nails included

new beginnings next week

learning persistence in prayer

loneliness, even amidst busyness

not understanding but trying anyway

questions without answers

forks in the road

imagining what might be

anticipating pumpkin roll, pumpkin cake and freshly roasted pumpkin seeds

coming to the bottom of the barrel

the coolness of my waterbed when the power goes out

watching the ants work with m&m this morning

freshly washed comforter

the puzzle of what happened to my bedroom curtains when we moved

little blondie on my lap chattering away as I type out all for which I give thanks

smelling the stolen perfume in her hair as she sits here

1 comment:

  1. stopping by from Ann's...great post...good words to take away...Humbleness defined as the gentle acceptance of losing face, choosing downward mobility and transparently allowing those I look at as "less" to be the tools of my demotion. AMEN...by God's grace...


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