Nobody likes to see prideful people win. Neither does God. In fact God likes humility so much that the Bible says, “He resists the proud but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6 This means that he “blocks” the proud person’s efforts and “helps” the humble person succeed. Do you want God’s help? I’m sure you do. So, here are some ways to actively humble yourself which will usher God’s grace into your life today:
- Obey God
This is the ultimate sign of humility, trusting God. And this trust is evidenced by simply following His lead. Whenever you have a choice to either do it God’s way or your way, choose God’s way.
“Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.” James 4:10
- Honor Others More Than Yourself
I don’t know if you have seen the video of that ESPN reporter who berated and insulted a lowly clerk at a towing company today or not, but that would be a classic example of what humility does not look like.
Because we are all so insecure, it is tempting to use our accomplishments in this life to boost our self-worth, and then use them as a weapon against others to make ourselves feel better about ourselves. But Jesus did the opposite. He was the most celebrated person in all of heaven but He came down here and took on the form of a servant, a clerk, so He could lift us up! Wow. Amazing. That’s why the Bible says:
“When you do things, do not let selfishness or pride be your guide. Instead, be humble and give more honor to others than to yourselves. Do not be interested only in your own life, but be interested in the lives of others. In your lives you must think and act like Christ Jesus.” Philippians 2:3-5 CEV
“Isn’t everything you have and everything you are sheer gifts from God? So what’s the point of all this comparing and competing?” 1 Corinthians 4:7 MSG
- Admit Your Weaknesses and Ask for Help
Coming to a place where you are not afraid of your own humanness, weaknesses, limitations and faults is incredibly freeing. It is a place of great peace. His grace flows to and through your weakness and the primary way God’s grace comes to you is through those around you. Let others help you. If you don’t you will miss out on a whole lot of grace and you will rob those around you of fulfilling the “law of Christ”, to help “bear your burden.” We have all been through some very difficult things in life; think about the people who helped get you through it. They were God’s grace to you.
Over the years I have learned to ask for help. I would rather set my pride aside and get more grace. One night God gave me a scripture during one of the hardest times in my life. The next morning a young man in our college group walked up to me and said, “God told me to give this scripture to you.” It was the same scripture!
“The Lord is for me among those who help me.” Psalm 118:7a
Admit your faults and weaknesses and let others help you.
This next one is going to be a fun one!
- Submit to Authority
Oh boy. Just hearing those words can raise the hairs on the back of your neck a bit, can’t they? I wonder why? Did you know that this is the biggie? And it all began in the Garden. Authority was, and is, and always will be the issue until Jesus returns and sets up His rule. Until then the question remains: Who is going to rule my life? Satan successfully sold the lie to Adam and Eve that if they would come out from under God’s rule they would be better for it. This was the big lie that is still working today. It wreaks havoc. But wait, it gets worse. It’s not just with God’s direct authority, but also with God’s delegated authority. The Bible teaches that all authority is from God.
“Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves.” Romans 13:1-2
Whether it is civil authority, parental authority, spiritual authority, etc… just know that when you are submitting to delegated authority you are submitting to God – and if they mistreat you God will deal with them. This will be the biggest character test of your life. But in the meantime He is developing your character and if you do it God’s way, in due time He will exalt you.
- Endure Trials
I like what one of my Hawaiian friends posted this morning: “Be humble. Don’t grumble.”
It is critical to understand something about God’s grace: God’s grace does not always deliver you from the trial but gives you the power for the trial. Why? I believe one of the reasons is because He wants to reveal Himself to you in them and make something great out of you through them. The sooner you accept this, the greater peace you will find. I’m sure you have gone through some very hard things in life and trusting God has become difficult. I understand that and don’t want to attempt to give you a pat answer or to minimize your trauma, but what I do know is that the answer is to trust Him beyond your understanding and know that He is doing a beautiful work in you. When you are suffering you must hang on to the truth that God is good and has a plan for your life.
“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” 2 Corinthians 4:17
“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 5:6-11
You may think this is insensitive of God, uncaring, and even cruel. But if you will partner with the process, when it is over you will see the results–that you are a better person, deeper, wiser and braver. Then you will see His wisdom.