PRAY: Humble in Heart
(Today, I’m sharing with you an adaptation of a devotional I wrote for the Christian Authors Network. Enjoy!)
“Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest—relief, ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet—for your souls” (Matt 11:29 AMP).
My personality type tends toward the opposite of what my teenagers call hipster. In other words, I’m one of the last to adopt any popular trend. It took me three years to set up a Facebook page, another two to add a Twitter account. And PinTerest? Forget about it (so far).
It shouldn’t surprise you, then, that I avoided what I saw as the popular movement of choosing an annual watchword for my devotional life. Avoided, that is, until this January, when God whispered a single word into my heart: humility.
Really, Lord? Couldn’t it be “joy” or “blessing” or even “best-seller”? Haven’t I encountered enough humbling circumstances over the past few years without having this word as my focus in 2013?
Maybe not. Or maybe those humbling circumstances failed to produce what He wanted to see in my life.
A week or so after God gave me my less-than-desirable watchword, I wrestled in prayer over a situation with a friend. He expected a lot. He communicated little. He took me for granted. My mental list of complaints expanded and extended—until I remembered my watchword.
How could humility play a part here? I wanted to confront this man in anger, not respond in gracious humility. But once again, God drew me up short. “Make a list of ten things you appreciate about him.”
Say what? My already-lengthy list had nothing to do with things I appreciated. But, one deep sigh and a “Yes, Lord,” later, I began my inventory: heart for the Lord; genuine love for his family; well-worn Bible; unique insights into Scripture.
It didn’t take long to realize my complaints carried little weight against my friend’s fine qualities. And it took only a little longer for God to show me that true humility wouldn’t see the negative side. True humility would consider the other person more important than herself. And true humility would look like Jesus: “humble in heart.”
My profession lends itself to moments of contemplation and reflection. But if I’m not careful, I can move into the destructive downturn in which I found myself ensnared. And regardless of what you do for a living, you can find yourself accentuating the negative, too.
With or without humility as our watchword, Christ set the example when He took the form of a servant. And when He makes us “humble in heart,” we can find true rest for our souls.
Lord, thank You for taking the form of a servant and being made in the likeness of men. Thank You for living and dying as the ultimate example of humility and love. Live through us that we might take Your yoke upon us and become humble in heart. In Your holy name we pray—AMEN.
Action Point: How can you demonstrate true humility today? Share your thoughts and prayer needs in the comments below, or feel free to email me through the “contact” link above.