Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Not "I", but "Christ"

I'm convinced that the vast majority of time and effort one spends defending themselves or promoting themselves...is wasted.

"Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time." 1 Peter 5:6

Perhaps it is just that we sometimes have a hard time discerning the line between defending and promoting God and His purposes in the world verses defending and promoting ourselves.

Unfortunately, I think most of the time it is merely our desire to be right and popular.

We think we must defend ourselves from unjust accusations to prove we are right, rather than humbly allowing our lives to prove our accusers wrong. We worry about what others will think who don't know us well enough to know the accusations are false. But does it really matter what they think of us anyway? Does it matter at all?

We think we must promote ourselves and our ideas, names, and programs, rather than allowing God to do the lifting up. We (and I'm talking about worship leaders, preachers, writers, bloggers, etc.) worry that no one will know how wonderful we are if we don't get our name out or toot our own horn. But isn't that a little too much like "taking the place of honor" (Luke 14:8)? I really believe that when God has a good thing going, He'll take care of making sure the right people find out about it.

I remember reading a long time ago that on his first several cd's, Dennis Jernigan would not allow them to put his picture on the cover. He desparately did not want it to be about Him, but rather about God. I love that kind of humility. Don't you? In a world full of people stepping all over each other to get to the top, isn't that refreshing?

God, please forgive us for selfish desires to be popular, liked, or right. In its place, fill us with a desire to promote Your name and Your work, with all of the credit and glory belonging to You. Give us patience, trusting that if a good work is from You, the word will get out in due time. Keep us humble, acknowledging that the power always comes from You, and we are merely Your vessels in this broken world. May it be true by the power of Your Spirit at work in our hearts - Amen.


Lindsay said...

That's good stuff, Shane. I definitely agree; I love that kind of humility. And I love reading it here daily and hearing it from you every Sunday. You are an awesome example to us all of how to exalt Christ, not ourselves. Keep up the good work, my friend!

Cornelius Crew said...

This is such a good reminder! It makes me think of things in the past that I know I should have left in God's hands rather than handle on my own. Thanks goodness for God's grace and mercy!