I came across this powerful quote by Charles Spurgeon, “Every Christian has a choice between being humble or being humbled” and it reminded me how often the Lord has to humble me. That ugly sin of pride continues to raise its head in my life and I desire to keep killing it. Wretched man that I am!! I can understand the issues Paul was struggling with in Romans 7. By God’s grace I need to keep resisting sin’s power and control in my life.
The hope I have is stated in Romans 7:22-25 and it reminds me that because I am redeemed, I can joyfully agree with God’s law. I can give thanks to the Lord and I know I will triumph in this struggle against the ugly sin of pride because Jesus Christ is my Deliver. So I continue to persevere and fight the good fight.
Humility is defined as “a personal quality in which an individual shows dependence on God and respect for other persons” (source).
I desire to strive for the virtue of humility in my life. The choice I would like to make is to be humble and not to be humbled. Unfortunately the latter happens more in my life than the former.
How does a person who is humble live differently from one who is prideful? This list is not exhaustive but maybe it will be a start for you to make your own list of areas that you need to be mindful of when we think of how gracious our God is towards us and that we have no right to be prideful in any area of our lives.
Marks of Humble People:
1. They trust in the sovereignty of God. They see themselves rightly before their Creator and know that God is perfect in all His judgments and don’t feel the need to question God. (Romans 9)
2. They are thankful people. They give thanks to the Lord in all things. (1 Thessalonians 5:8)
3. They are in awe of God’s goodness and grace towards them. We are sinners that were destined and deserving of Hell and our gracious Savior raised us from the dead and gave us new life in Christ. All undeserved. This is one I need to be mindful of always. (Romans 6:23, Psalm 116:12-19).
4. They can rejoice with others. We need to take our eyes off of ourselves because it takes selflessness to truly rejoice with others. Battling self is the issue we must overcome to rejoice with others (Romans 12:15).
5. They practice unity based on their salvation. The reality is we are never going to see eye to eye on everything with everyone. We are not to set aside doctrinal truth and compromise the Gospel in any way but we are to set aside personal preferences for the sake of unity. (Ephesians 4:2-3)
6. They are not wise in their own eyes. The sin of intellectual pride is ugly. Adam and Eve thought they knew more than God and that led to disaster. Leon Morris states it well, “The person who is wise in his own eyes is rarely so in the eyes of other people.” (Proverbs 3:7)
7. They forgive quickly because they have been forgiven much. They are mindful of the Gospel and the forgiveness they have received in Christ. They desire to be peacemakers. (Colossians 3:12-14)
8. They have a a teachable spirit. They understand that they don’t know everything and can learn much from others by listening. (2 Peter 3:18, 1 Corinthians 4:7)
9. They build others up. If we applied Ephesians 4:29 in our lives there would be much peace in our homes and churches. “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” ~ Ephesians 4:29
10. They have servants hearts. They are washing the feet of the saints. Loving and serving others is the mark of their lives. (Galatians 5:13-14).
There is nothing that will put you in your place, nothing that will correct your distorted view of yourself, nothing that will yank you out of your functional arrogance, or nothing that will take the winds out of the sails of your self-righteousness like standing, without defense, before the awesome glory of God.~ Paul David Tripp
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