Jesus Embodied Humility
Written by: Kailee Potgeter
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For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled,
and the one who humbles himself will be exalted.
- Luke 14:11
Sometimes I think that humility and the act of being humble is something that is meant to be full of honor. People who are humble do not brag about their accomplishments, they take care of others, and are honest, hard-working people. However, the true definition of humility is someone who submits to others. Webster’s Dictionary describes humility as “ranking low in a hierarchy or scale.”
When Jesus was born, He came from the lowest of the lows: He was born in a stable amongst cattle and shepherds, He was born out of wedlock, and may have been looked down upon in many situations. Philippians 2:7-8 puts into perspective how Jesus gave up his Heavenly ranking with God to humble himself to the lowest earthly rank; the true definition of humility.
“He (Jesus) gave up His divine privileges;
He took the humble position of a slave]
and was born as a human being.
When He appeared in human form,
He humbled Himself in obedience to God
and died a criminal’s death on a cross.”
- Philippians 2:7-8
Every aspect of Jesus’s life embraced the definition of humility. As the Son of God, He could have accused others, shamed them for their sin, and proclaimed how He was superior to us. But He didn’t. He prayed with the hurting, ate with the prostitutes, loved the thieves, and did not care about their skin colors, economic class, or past lives. He saw the value in each and every one of God’s children and poured his love and care into them. What an honorable task. It sounds so simple on the surface, but takes a special kind of person to love without boundaries.
It can be so hard to humble ourselves. Our world is constantly encouraging us to brag about what we are doing. Making sure that every good deed doesn’t go unnoticed. But what did God call Jesus to do? Was He looking to be worshipped on this earth? Or was He working to glorify God? Jesus was consistently doing miracles and pointed the praise back to the Heavenly Father. He told many of the individuals He helped to be silent about His healing powers. He wanted the glory and praise to belong to God, the rightful owner. This can be so hard for us to do. Sometimes humbling ourselves is doing things that we don’t want to do. Things that we may think we are better than, but God always has a reason for the journey we are on.
Reflection 1. What is God calling you to humble yourself to do?
2. Think of a time you humbled yourself to help someone else. How did it make you feel even if you didn’t receive any praise?
God, thank You for sending Your Son into the world as a humble baby. Thank You for giving us a perfect example of what it looks like to live for You. Help us to seek out spaces where we can humble ourselves to show Your glory and might. Especially during this Christmas season, help us to focus on glorifying You through our actions and words.
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