One of the requirements of the MDIV program here at Denver Seminary is to be involved in a fairly intensive mentoring program. Part of the mentoring is working on 'character contracts' which seek to help one develop their character in order to be healthier and more effective pastors. This semester my character contract is focusing on humility. How does one obtain humility, what does it look like, how did Jesus display humility? These are just a few of the questions I have been wrestling with throughout this semester and at times it feels like I now have more questioning about humility than when I started this process.
I was journalist a little bit about this process yesterday and wanted to share some of my thoughts. These are not completely polished or finalized thoughts on the topic of humility, but more just a glimpse of my mind working through humility.
Here he was, God's son, part of the triune God head, in a mans body, walking around in His Father's broken creation. I imagine Jesus was actually hurting in more ways than we often recognize. Here He was in a world that was meant to be beautiful and a representation of God, but instead it was/is broken, damaged, torn apart, filled with sin and yet there in the midst of everything was God's Son in all His glory. How did Jesus walk around day after day in this broken world without crying all day over the destruction of something so beautiful, yet do damaged now? Was it because He was God? Yes and yes. Jesus was able to walk the earth because of His great humility which he exhibited. Humility, humiliation, one can see it throughout Jesus' life. From His mother asking Him to perform miracles before He is ready, as if he were a magician to being spit on, mocked, and crucified on the cross. The question for me becomes am I willing to be spit on, mocked, or crucified for Christ, because these actions take great humility. Some days I think the answer is emphatically Yes! However other days I don't know if I could endure it. Thankfully these are the days Christ upholds me and reminds me that it is ONLY by His strength now my own. Praise God!
I believe that in our society today humility is not something at carries with it a high value. We believe that one should seek out power, wealth, and prestige rather than humility. As Christians we are called to a different lifestyle, one that is committed to humility, and with this humiliation at times. I am challenging myself (and you) to take some time this week to think about ways in which you are pursuing a humble life? How can you in your humility both become like Christ and also know Him more deeply.