Monday, April 9, 2012

"Humility" by Andrew Murray

Was Jesus really meek and mild?
It has caused me to wonder about the way we see Jesus - was He "meek and mild" or strong and forthright and bold? Yes, both. Sometimes Murray seems to paint Jesus as so meek and unassuming that it doesn't match what I see in Scripture. Jesus was humble enough to be "obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross"...but He also overturned money tables in the temple and spoke outright against falsehood in religious authorities! It just makes me wonder what humility really looks like - and I think it looks meek and mild in some circumstances and bold as a lion in other Jesus. The difference, I suppose, is that Jesus was acting in defense of truth and the character of the Living God. We often act like lions when we are simply trying to defend our own, often foolish, selves. Big difference. I once heard the expression that those who are proud are concerned with WHO is right, but those who are humble are concerned with WHAT is right. hmmm.

True Love & Humility Shown Through Everyday Life
I'm only part way through the book - but here are two portions that hit me square between the eyes, based on I John 4:20 "Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen."

(1) Murray states: "What a solemn thought, that our love for God will be measured by our everyday intercourse with men and the love it displays; and that our love for God will be found to be a delusion, except was its truth proved in standing the test of daily life with our fellowmen. It is even so with our humility. It is easy to think we humble ourselves before God: humility towards men will be the only sufficient proof that our humility before God is real; that humility has taken up its abode in us; and become our very nature; that we actually, like Christ, have made ourselves of no reputation."

(2) And another one... "...the only humility that is really ours is not that which we try to show before God in prayer, but that which we carry with us, and carry out, in our ordinary condcut; the insignificances of daily life are the importances and the tests of eternity, because they prove what really is the spirit that possesses us. It is in our most unguarded moments that we really show and see what we are. To know the humble man, to know how the humble man behaves, you must follow him in the common course of daily life."

I wrote in my journal not very long ago that its so much easier to humble myself before God - He is holy and just. His judgment is true. His mercy is never-ending. His forgiveness is beyond comprehension. Humbling myself before men who might twist my words or use them against me is an entirely different choice to that involves trust in my Sovereign Lord above the choices that men may make.

Two Different People
Two images popped into my mind of two different people that I have walked with in a busy, bustling city: the first one pushes his way through and starts arguments with those that are in his way; the second one offers to carry my bag for me, and stops to ask a homeless person about their health. Guess which one I'm going to attempt to emulate.


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