LEGACYouth: A Taste of "Humble Pie"

When examining ourselves, it’s important to inspect the type of humility we carry. After all, when we look at the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5), we find meekness taking center stage…not only within the Beatitudes, but also at the heart of who Jesus calls “blessed”. Thus, when we consider humility’s placement within the Beatitudes, we can better understand the role it's meant to play in the life of the believer.

With that said, it should be no surprise how one of the sneakiest, most underrated tactics of the enemy involves humility, more specifically, a replacement of what it is with a compromised version. For Satan knows full well if he can cause a logjam at the point of humility, we won’t be able to hunger, show mercy and love as effectively. Thus, it’s important we’re continually aware of our humility gauges as we aspire to be more like Christ.

As a refresher, let’s start look at some Scriptures about what true humility looks like:

  • God gives grace to the humble.” ~ James 4:6 (ESV)
  • So if there is any encouragement in Christ...complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility…value others above yourselves.” ~ Philippians 2:1-3 (NIV)*
  • Humility is the fear of the Lord…” ~ Proverbs 22:4 (NIV)
  • “…walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” ~ Ephesians 4:1-3 (ESV)
  • Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom.” ~ James 3:13 (NIV)


  • See how this set of verses connects back to the Beatitudes?

    For instance, starting out in Proverbs 22, we see humility equated to the “fear of the Lord” (i.e. a love of what God loves & a hate of what God hates), which essentially covers the first two Beatitudes. Then immediately following, we have humility landing as the third Beatitude (“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”).

    Yet, for the remaining verses, we’re given snapshots of humility’s evidence, each pertaining to a succeeding Beatitude. For instance, in James 4:6, we see a connection to Matthew 5:7 (“Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.”) And in Ephesians 4:1-3, we find a link to Matthew 5:8-9 (“Blessed are the pure heart in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.”)

    So it’s fascinating to see what leads to humility and what flows out of it.

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    Now, let’s talk about stumbling blocks in our quest to apply humility.

    Sometimes, the enemy will trick us into thinking we have to self-loathe if we want to “decrease” (John 3:30); other times, he’ll try to get us to buy the lie that we’re inferior compared to other people…and that somehow, this helps us “value others above ourselves.”

    But this is just a twisted lie in twisted truth form.

    You see, Satan would love for you to think taking up your cross means taking on the weight of sin…that in order to get to a better state, you need to embrace a stronghold as part of a “one step back, two steps forward” philosophy.

    But think about: how does this make sense when we consider Christ already took sin on…and conquered it! Clearly, the devil, as the father of lies, has no respect for history or redundancy.

    Truth is: You can’t beat yourself up to heaven. Being like Christ doesn’t mean we gotta lash ourselves 39 times or persecute ourselves in order to show God and others how sorry we are.

    After all, as Francis Chan says, “Humility isn’t pretending you can’t do anything right(see video clip below).

    On the contrary, humility starts when we begin to understand our need for Jesus…and aren’t discouraged about it!** Once we’re no longer ashamed (of the Gospel or of ourselves) and once we’ve accepted who we are and who God is, we can accept His grace and watch it permeate everything else!

    Thus, arriving at the place of humility means we’ve broken through our disappointment with a greater hunger to know God more…and to the point His grace makes sense as the only answer to being who we’re called to be.

    So go ahead and get yourself a piece of "humble pie"***and dig in! 'Cause once you encounter its sweetness, it won't be long until your mind, heart and strength starts to transform.

    Just remember…humility is like underwear; wear it, but never show it.

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    Footnotes

    *Note how this relates back what we’ve been discussing in Acts, particularly Acts 4:32: “All the believers were united in heart and mind…and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common." If you doubt this type of "church" can happen today, then you probably haven't tasted what happens when unity, community and humility come together.

    **Since godly sorrow, not despondency, is the type of mourning alluded to in the second Beatitude.

    ***In this case, we'll let "humble pie" refer to authentic humility as defined in God's Word.

Comments

Jan Ferguson said…
Great post and a healthy perspective.
Thank you, Jan! :) I felt like this was one message where I was preaching/writing more to myself than anyone else ;)