- Before you can arise you have to be dead.
My word for the year is “humble.” I’ve been asking myself: “Is that a humble way to act?” “Is that a humble thing to say?” “Is that a humble thought I just had?” I have caught myself many times in prideful thinking and the process of eliminating it reminds me of getting a facial. Before you receive the relaxing massage, you have to go through the extractions, which can hurt a little. God has to extract pride (and it may hurt a little) in order for us to be a more beautiful vessel.
James 4:10 says, “Humble yourself before the LORD and he will lift you up.” 1 Peter 5:6 says, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you.”
Sometimes the way God removes pride is to allow humbling circumstances in our lives. I’ve experienced that recently. Over Easter weekend, I badly sprained my foot. While helping to set up a conference near Atlanta over the weekend, I strained my back when lifting a box of books. After that, I could not carry anything heavy and was a little off-balance with both a sprained foot and a bad back. When it was time to leave the Atlanta area, I had to have help taking my suitcase down the stairs. For an independent woman like myself, that was very difficult.
I’ve been reading a Jewish spirituality book called Everyday Holiness by Alan Morinis. Morinis says one way to be humble is to make space in our lives to listen to others, even ones who happen to hold a lesser station, rank or intellectual attainment. He then told the story of a rabbi who made what appeared to be an arrogant statement. The rabbi said, “I’m smarter than a thousand men.” However, after saying that, he followed with: “Because of that, my obligation to serve God is also that of a thousand men.” The greater our capacity, the more we need to use for God’s glory. He wants our gifts to spill out to others.
God’s kingdom is upside down. The way up is down to our knees placing our lives at the feet of Jesus. When we do that, he raises us up in His power.
“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom” (Proverbs 11:2).
Will you consider taking the pride test for a month? Ask yourself the questions I ask myself daily:
“Is that a humble way to act?”
“Is that a humble thing to say?”
“Is that a humble thought I just had?”
This practice has changed my life and it could transform yours as well.
Will you join me for POP Chat tomorrow night from 6:30-7:30 p.m. CT? I’ll be sharing a message I believe God gave me called “The Majesty of His Mercy.” Our worship leader is gifted flautist Katherine Legg. If you would like to sign up for a wonderful time of teaching, worship, fellowship and discussion, just click on the link:
 Alan Morinis, Everyday Holiness, (Boulder: Trumpeter, 2007), 51.