God blesses those who are humble, for they will inherit the whole earth. — Matthew 5:5, NLT (Jesus speaking)
Maybe you’re puzzled like I am. You’re in your Lazy-boy watching Hollywood’s rich and famous gathered for yet another love fest. The announcer calls out the name of some budding young starlet. The room bursts into applause, the spotlight illuminates the smiling beauty — and she’s clapping, too, applauding herself along with the rest of the crowd.
What’s with that?
Maybe it’s honest. I suppose clapping for yourself is better than faking humility, which is what most of us do — myself included.
It’s hard to be humble. And really, what’s the point? Why not wear our pride proudly?
What does humility get you these days? Can you imagine a humble Rosie O’Donnell? A humble Donald Trump? A humble Barry Bonds? Is it an oxymoron to be a humble NBA star? A humble CEO? A humble presidential candidate?
What did Jesus mean?
Humility isn’t self-hatred. You aren’t being humble if you go through life thinking you’re a rotten person.
Humility isn’t living in denial about your gifts and abilities. Jesus isn’t saying “don’t achieve” or “don’t be excellent.”
Humility isn’t a theatrical performance. Faking it doesn’t count. Nor is it a hairshirt.
Humility is a frame of mind that grows out of a frame of reference. For Christians, it’s the simple recognition that God is everything I am not, and He has made me everything I am.
Jesus put it this way:
Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in Me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from Me you can do nothing. — John 15:5, NLT (Jesus speaking)
Apart from Jesus, I can do nothing. Zip. Zero. Nada. The big goose egg.
Everything I am comes from God, the vine, the source of my being.
With that recognition, with that world view, we begin to live in true humility.