Today I continue the series on Dangerous Prayers. This blog is full of potential landmines so let me say from the very beginning, I’m not humble and proud of it! I don’t think I’ve arrived when it comes to understanding humility. And I often fail in applying what I do know. And I’m not just being humble. Can you see the problem here?
However, since God asked me to pray for humility I’ve learned a few things. First off I’ve learned God doesn’t need a lot of help here when it comes to humbling me. Life will humble you plenty if you live long enough. I can make so many problems for myself, I don’t need lessons. If God just leaves me to my own devices life will quickly humble me. Additionally there are many people very glad for the opportunity to humble me. Oh, and I should mention that we have an enemy of our souls who absolutely loves the opportunity to rub our nose in any mistake. He will gladly heap on shame and make you feel responsible for anything that goes wrong and anyone else’s poor choices. I learned you don’t have to pray for humility. It will find you.
The second thing I learned is that humility is not what I thought it was. Humility is not having a lowly opinion of yourself. At its essence humility is dependence on God. Humility is seeing yourself and your situation clearly and accurately. It is a proper understanding of reality but a determined commitment put God’s will first and to do things God’s way. Humility is the willingness to wait on God’s timing and to give God your surrendered spirit to bring glory to His name.
Humility might mean you are strong and courageous when you feel like playing it safe. If God says go humility says, yes Sir. Humility might be pressing on when it appears that the plan isn’t working because God pointed that way. It is not retaliating when people misunderstand you or misjudge your motives. Sometimes it is not arguing and at other times not having to have your way. Sometimes it is standing up for the principal of the matter or standing with someone who has been unfairly treated. There is nothing mousey about humility. Humility is strength under fire because you know the strength is not your own. If you’ve died to self then humility rewards you with a sense of well done thou good and faithful servant. Humility is far from having a low opinion of yourself—it means you have a high opinion of God.
So I do pray for humility because that means I want to have a greater sense of dependence on God. I want to die to selfishness and I want to live for the will and the glory of God. Moses was humble and he was one of the most effective leaders of all time. And no one modeled humility better than Jesus as described in Philippians 2. If I’m honest I still shudder at times when I pray for humility but I do it because Jesus asked me to do it. And I’m learning it is one of the best things for which I could pray.