Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.
James 4:10 NLT
Yes, our job is to humble ourselves. We are to be a servant to others. We are to love our enemies. We are to give open handedly to those in need.
We are to recognize “little me, big God”.
I saw a tattoo the other day on a girl’s wrist, small and humble, on the inside of the wrist, just under where her watch band might rest. It was clear that he tattoo was not meant to be an outward sign held up to others, but a quiet reminder to herself. It simply read:
Yes, he is greater than me.
If there was ever a tattoo that I’ve seen that reminded me of Jesus healing on the Sabbath, it was this tattoo. I know there are those lost in legalism that would condemn this girl for having a tattoo as they clutch their 1611 KJV translations, pointing to Deuteronomy, and sling stones at others like the best of the Pharisees – missing the beauty of the humility and love in these 4 tiny characters that are a hidden reminder to this girl.
Yes, love covers a multitude of sins. But no, grace does not give us a license to sin. Our heart is what matters. I’m sure many raised up to speak against Hosea when He went out and married an unclean prostitute. I’m sure they mocked him after she left him and he had to go back and buy her back. But you see, it wasn’t about Hosea receiving honor and glory amongst men, it was about God receiving the glory and honor.
How many times do we get that wrong, wanting to do things so that we might appear more honorable – instead of asking, “What will bring YOU honor and glory, Lord – even if it is at the sake of making me look foolish?”
Humility before the Lord is us letting Him lift us up – not us lifting ourselves up and hoping that it will bring Him glory. I ask you, how are my own filthy rag works going to bring any glory to an Almighty God?
We need to stop trig to look righteous and actually be righteous.
We need to stop “practicing” religion and start living Christ.
Yes, we need to find the humility that comes at the foot of the cross, that bends our knees and bows our heads before Almighty God – that convicts us of our sin, no so that we might know shame and guilt, but so that He will wash it clean and lift us up as His own prized possession.
Yes, this is humility, that we are all so very small at the foot of God – but that He values us enough to choose us and to use us to bring glory and honor to His name.
So we must ask ourselves, is He using me? Am I chosen? Does my life show the evidence, the proof, that Christ lives in me? Is there fruit that is being born in my branches?
And I am humbled by how much still needs change, how far my life is from look like the perfection of Christ’s example – but I am even more humbled by how much He has already changed in me. I can see the changes, little by little, and I will boast of the things the Lord is doing, while still remaining humble, understanding that these are things that I did not overcome on my own, but under the power of the Word of God and the Holy Spirit of Christ who lives in me.
In what areas of your life does the Lord need to humble you?
Is it your pride in a position or title or recognition amongst others?
Is it your comfort and wealth while others are hungry and in need?
Is it your physical health and ability while others struggle with disabilities and challenges daily?
Is it your gifts that are being used to glorify and honor yourself and to build up a kingdom of your own – instead of being used by the Lord to fulfill His, Kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven?
We each have time to repent, to choose, whether we will humble ourselves before Him – or whether we will be taught humility come our time of judgement.
Who is doing the lifting up makes all the difference in eternity.