Though a contradiction, some people love to tell you how proud they are of their humility. Oh, they may not say it in those words, but the message is clearly communicated nonetheless. And if they do, they aren’t.
The LORD is my shepherd; I have everything I need. He lets me rest in fields of green grass and leads me to quiet pools of fresh water. He gives me new strength. He guides me in the right paths, as he has promised. (Psalm 23:1-3 GNB)
If I asked you to list some passages in Scripture that speak of humility, you would likely not put Psalm 23 on your list. I suggest that it presents an excellent profile of a humble person. How so?
Humility requires us to acknowledge that we need help and accept it when it is given. This is the essence of Psalm 23. Read today’s passage with that thought in mind.
From where then comes the idea that admitting we are unable to do something is weak or that asking for or accepting help is showing weakness? (You know, but I will not acknowledge him here.) Let me offer some thoughts:
- Asking for or accepting help is viewed as a sign of weakness by those attempting to maintain an “I can do anything.” persona (image).
- Some do not ask for help because they fear being a burden, imposing on someone, or being seen as needy.
- Some do not ask because they do not feel worthy.
- Some think needing help is declaring that they are useless or inferior.
None of these are true. In fact, they are outright lies from … you know. So, what is the truth? The real weakness in asking for help is in not asking for it.
While asking for or accepting help requires admitting a shortcoming, the very act of asking for or accepting help reveals wisdom, strength, confidence, and character. Admitting that we cannot do everything or need help doing something is a core characteristic of humility.
David was quick to acknowledge that he needed help. His writings are filled with pleas for help from God. He was equally quick to receive it and to acknowledge God as the source of his help. Again, read today’s passage with this in mind. You will begin to see it in a different perspective.
In Psalm 121:1, he asks, “Where does my help come from?” The immediate response is clear and unmistakable: “My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.” Though I have not done a study on this, “off the top of my head,” I would say that David asked for God’s help more than anyone of whom we have a record. And would anyone dare to call him weak?
God declared David to be a man after His own heart. This implies that David understood humility because it is not possible to have such a relationship with God without it. Therefore, he is a reliable mentor after whom we can pattern our lives. (I consider him one of mine.)
I have heard humility described as strength under authority. I like this. I believe it describes the humility we should exemplify in our relationship with God. In this new year, I hope that you will acknowledge what you are unable to do and never hesitate to ask God for help.
I will go a bit further: Even if you CAN do something, ask God for help anyway because He can always do it better. David did, and look where it got him. You can, and only God knows where He will take you–if you will let Him.
From ministry friend Randall Vaughn. © 2024 Randall Vaughn • All Rights Reserved • http://www.e-min.org