C.S. Lewis said:
“As long as you are proud you cannot know God. A proud man is always looking down on thing and people: and, of course, as long as you are looking down you cannot see something that is above you.”
In the crazy world we live in, the concept of humility often seems counterintuitive. Society tells us to climb the ladder of success, to assert ourselves, and to stand out. However, as followers of Christ, our understanding of humility is rooted in the example set by our Savior. The apostle Paul, in his letter to the Philippians, captures the essence of humility by pointing us to the life of Jesus. Philippians chapter 2 teaches us not only the value of humility but also the transformative power it holds in our lives.
3 Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. 4 Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too.
In a world driven by personal gain, Paul's words stand as a stark contrast. He challenges us to put aside our selfish desires and instead focus on the needs of others. This shift in perspective is the hallmark of humility. By valuing others above ourselves, we demonstrate the selflessness that Christ displayed during His earthly life. True humility seeks to serve and uplift others, reflecting the very nature of our Lord.
"In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus."
Humility begins with a change in mindset. To embrace a life of humility, we must adopt this attitude that Christ has shown us. His mindset was one of complete submission to the Father's will and a willingness to serve humanity, even unto death. By following Christ's example, we align ourselves with the very heart of God. This mindset reshapes how we view success, recognition, and our purpose, enabling us to view them through the lens of humility.
"...who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death— even death on a cross!"
The pinnacle of humility is found in the life of Christ Himself. Despite His divine status, He willingly laid it aside to become a servant, entering our world in human form. This act of self-emptying, of making Himself nothing, exemplifies humility in its purest form. Christ's humility led Him to the cross, where He endured the ultimate sacrifice for our redemption. This profound act of humility reveals the depth of God's love for us.
"Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."
The story of humility doesn't end at the cross. God exalted Jesus, honoring His humility with unparalleled glory. Comparably, as we embrace humility, God promises to exalt us in due time (1 Peter 5:6). Our humility magnifies God's presence in our lives and draws others to His light. Just as every knee will bow before Jesus, acknowledging His lordship, our humility testifies to the transformative power of Christ in us.
Today, as we wind down our thought, Philippians chapter 2 is an invitation to embody the humility of Christ. It challenges us to set aside our selfish ambitions, adopt Christ's mindset, and embrace the sacrificial love that led Him to the cross. In humility, we find true purpose, genuine relationships, and a deep connection with our Savior. As we journey through life, may we continuously seek to walk in the footsteps of the humble Servant-King, Jesus Christ.