“What makes humility so desirable is the marvelous thing it does to us; it creates in us a capacity for the closest possible intimacy with God.”
Gate Handle by Vera Kratochvil
Humility is a hallmark characteristic of a successful life. While the best leaders are not always humble, there is a certain transcendent quality to those leaders who possess a true spirit of humility.
Another of my favorite all-time books is The Call by Os Guinness. If you are looking for your true calling, this is a life-changing book. One of my favorite excerpts from the book is about humility:
At times the church of Christ has created institutional ways of challenging pride. Few are more moving than the burial ceremony of the Hapsburg emperors, who were laid to rest in the vaults of the Capuchin monastery in Vienna.
When Emperor Franz Josef died, the grand cortege arrived at the closed doors of the monastery and a herald knocked at the gate. From within the voice of the Abbott could be heard asking:
“Who are you, who knocks?”
“I am Franz Josef, Emperor of Austria, King of Hungary,” the herald replied.
“I don’t know you. Tell me again who you are?”
“I am Franz Josef, Emperor of Austria, King of Hungary, Bohemia, Galicia, Lodomeria, and Dalmatia, Grand Duke of Transylvania, Margrave of Moravia, Duke of Styria and Corinthia…”
“We still don’t know you. Who are you?” the sepulchral voice reiterated. Whereupon the herald knelt down and said:
“I am Franz Josef, a poor sinner humbly begging for God’s mercy.”
“Thou mayest enter then,” the Abbott said and the gates were flung open.
This is a wonderful picture of true humility.
Do you believe that there are resources in Christianity that allow us to increase our humility? Humans are deeply self-centered creatures. It seems we use anything in our power to justify ourselves – our jobs, our money, our family, our possessions. There is no limit to our capacity for self-centeredness.
This self-centeredness flies right into the face of humility. How can we truly be humble and yet constantly trying to justify ourselves? This is an exhausting life.
But, when Jesus came (not a religion), He blew the doors off of self-centeredness. Through Christ, justification is no longer needed. He saw us at our worst and still accepted us. The need to be “good enough” is gone through what Jesus accomplished. Jesus did not choose us because we were good enough. He chose us because he loves us – period.
Do you believe this? Have you ever spent time thinking about this resource?
What are you using to justify yourself today? Will you set it down and put your eyes on the One who loved you and me when we were unlovable? The path to true humility is only found in the restful arms of a loving Savior.
“True humility is contentment.”
~Henri Frederic Amiel
~Henri Frederic Amiel
Question:Why is self-justification such a powerful force? Please leave comments below.