Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.
Our Executive Pastor at Cedarcrest Church, Scott Kelly, kicked off 2016 with an excellent message yesterday focusing on Philippians 2:3-4. The purpose of his message was to encourage us as we focus on new habits for the new year. As he looked at these verses, one of my favorite points reminded us to reset our motive and focus on God getting the glory rather than ourselves. Be humble enough to put God first and to consider the needs of others. Be known for loving well and serving others.
After hearing that great message and doing some further reading and study, I ran across Humility: The Journey Towards Holiness by Andrew Murray. This book is a quick read…but chock full of helpful information of what it looks like to truly treasure Jesus and serve others in a way that points them straight to Him and His glory. I hope you will consider reading this. I know that it has caused me to think and to shift some thoughts as I head into 2016.
I highlighted several things while reading and have posted those notes below…
- As theologian Walter Brueggemann has said, “Sabbath means to be in a mode of receptivity for gifts to be given and that requires one to slow down, to pause, to wait.”Set a regular time each week for this, and fight to protect it.
- It needs to be made clear that it is not sin that humbles but grace. It is the soul occupied with God in His wonderful glory as Creator and Redeemer that will truly take the lowest place before Him.
- “Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant” (Matthew 20:26)
- They lay their crowns before the throne and say: “You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.” Revelation 4:10–11
- Humility, the place of entire dependence upon God, is from the very nature of things the first duty and the highest virtue of His creatures.
- His humility became our salvation. His salvation is our humility.
- Humility is the only soil in which virtue takes root; a lack of humility is the explanation of every defect and failure. Humility is not so much a virtue along with the others, but is the root of all, because it alone takes the right attitude.
- It is not something that we bring to God, or that He bestows; it is simply the sense of entire nothingness that comes when we see how truly God is everything. When the creature realizes that this is a place of honor, and consents to be—with his will, his mind, and his affections—the vessel in which the life and glory of God are to work and manifest themselves, he sees that humility is simply acknowledging the truth of his position as creature and yielding to God His place.
- “If you are looking for an example of humility, look at the cross.” THOMAS AQUINAS
- It is pride that made redemption necessary; it is from our pride that we need, above everything else, to be redeemed.
- Let us consider how our lack of love, indifference to the needs and feelings of others, even sharp comments and hasty judgments that are often excused as being honest and straightforward, are thwarting the effect of the influence of the Holy Spirit on others. Manifestations of temper and touchiness and irritation, feelings of bitterness and estrangement, have their root in nothing but pride.
- “The only hope of a decreasing self is an increasing Christ.” F. B. MEYER
- I am among you as one who serves. Luke 22:27
- Learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart. Matthew 11:29
- “God created the world out of nothing, and as long as we are nothing, He can make something out of us.” MARTIN LUTHER
- Humility is a virtue that only comes in power when the fullness of the Spirit makes us partakers of the indwelling Christ and He lives within us.
- We have our pride from Adam; we must have our humility from Christ.
- It is when the truth of the indwelling Christ takes the place it deserves in the experience of believers that the church will put on her beautiful garment and humility will be seen in her teachers and members as the beauty of holiness.
- Humility before God is nothing if it is not proven in humility before others.
- “Honor one another above yourselves” (Romans 12:10)
- The humble person feels no jealousy or envy. He can praise God when others are preferred and blessed before him.
- Humility always seeks, like Jesus, to be the servant, the helper, and the comforter of others, even to the lowest and most unworthy.
- May we have true faith in the sufficiency of God and admit to the inefficiency of self, that by God’s power we will serve one another in love.
- Where the spirit of love is shed abroad in the heart, where the divine nature comes to full birth, and where Christ the meek and lowly Lamb of God is truly formed within, there comes the power of a perfect love that forgets itself and finds its blessedness in blessing others.
- “Nothing sets a person so much out of the devil’s reach as humility.” JONATHAN EDWARDS
- Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. 1 Timothy 1:15
- “Humility is the most difficult of all virtues to achieve; nothing dies harder than the desire to think well of oneself.” T. S. ELIOT
- He humbled himself and became obedient to death. Philippians 2:8
- Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses…. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:9–10
- We shall find that the deepest humility is the secret of the truest happiness, of a joy that nothing can destroy.
- Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 1 Peter 5:6