By now we have all understood that life is one big learning experience. However, for those of us who have a relationship with God we understand that more than anything else, His desire is to teach us all that there is to know about Him so that our journey of life can have quality. Part of learning who He is, is understanding that not a single one of us can accomplish any real good if we depend on our own supposed ability, strength, or wisdom. In fact, He tells us “Without me (Apart from Him) you can do nothing”, and in a different verse, the bible reassures that “we can do all things through Christ” .
At some point we have to learn to trust and let Christ do things through us, as opposed to trusting our own ability and doing things apart from Him. Getting to this place will never happen overnight, in fact personally speaking this was my greatest struggle for years – how do I let Christ do things through me? Does that mean me taking the back seat? For those who know me personally will know that, I am the type of person who likes to be in control, and likes to do things precisely my way. So, as you can imagine warming up to this idea of “letting Christ do things through me” was one I struggled to understand. For a split moment I felt as though I could do things better than Christ could through me (or for me). However, with time and plenty of experiences that started stripping me off this attitude little by little, it became more clear as to what it really meant.
The bible gives us an endless list of people whom God had to humble before He could use. The first perfect example is King David. Although there is much to learn from his life, in his earlier years he was nearly hunted for death by King Saul. Years after David finally became king, his own son drove him from the throne for a period of time, yet through EVERYTHING he had gone through David was humbled and reminded that it was God who made him the great king that he was. Yet another reference is Joseph. He had to endure the jealousy of his brothers, the slavery, and be condemned as a criminal, before God could exalt him as the Prime Minister of Egypt AND use him to save his people from the famine. Moses was groomed as the prince of Egypt for 40 years under Pharaoh’s care, yet God couldn’t use him until he spent another 40 years in the wilderness tending to sheep. Paul is yet another perfect example. He was a man whose purpose was to destroy followers of Jesus, but after his encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascus all that he was about him, changed. God had to break him and make him into a new man before he could use him to save many others.
There are times when so many things will take place in our lives that lead us to believe our life is spiraling out of control, but the truth is, in the process of all these unpleasant experiences what God is actually doing is dealing with our core. In order for God to get to our core He first has to break that outer shell that’s made up of pride and confidence in our own self, *apart from Him*. In other words, there will be times where He will need to strip you of all that you are so confident in (within yourself) to show that your very core, and all that you are is because of Him. Almost anyone who has ever been of any real use to God had to first come to the end of themselves. What does this mean? This means that all the pride, and ego we have in our own ability and strength must be stripped off so that no man takes credit for himself; so that man can see the greater works of God that surpasses the abilities of man.
God uses humbleness to do His greatest of works. If you have trouble understanding or accepting this, then think of Christ – the ultimate example. In Philippians 2:8 the bible tells us “And being found in appearance as a man, he [Christ] humbled himself by becoming obedient to death – even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place …” Think about it. If Christ who was blameless, and perfect in all ways had to come down to earth, live a human life, and humble Himself to the point of death, then why are WE struggling with this idea? Remember, Christ was humbled, and for His humbleness He was greatly exalted by the Father.
“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and HE will exalt you.” James 4:10
See you next Monday!