More Than Heroes, We Need a…

Of course, we need people to look up to, especially in an age of acute ambition – which is another good reason to have older saints, mentoring the younger.  More than heroes, though, we need a Savior.  Then we also need ordinary people around us who exemplify godly qualities and take the time to invest in our lives.  Paul even called his young apprentices and churches to follow his example.  Yet the characteristics he mentions are his undistracted focus on the gospel, humility, love for all the saints and contentment (II Thessalonions 3:9)

– Horton, Michael, Ordinary: Sustainable Faith in a Radical, Restless World; Zondervan; copyright 214; Kindle Edition; page 154-155

Our Greatest Problem is Not the Reality of Our Sin

Perhaps our greatest problem is not the reality of our sin, but our unbiblical expectations of what Christian growth should look like.  What if growing in grace is more about humility, dependence and exalting Christ than it is about our defeating sin?  How would that impact our struggle with sin and our Joy in Christ as we continue to live as weak sinners in a fallen world?  Surely it would make all the difference in the world.

– Duguid, Barbara; Extravagant Grace: God’s Glory Displayed in our Weakness; P&R Publishing; Philippsburg, NJ; copyright 2013; Page 18

Pride is Our Enemy

Pride is our enemy and humility is our ally. Pride compares us to other centers; humility compares his to our Savior. Pride covets the success of others; humility celebrates it. Pride is about me; humility is about Jesus and other people. Pride is about my glory; humility is about God’s glory. Pride causes separation from God; humility causes dependence on God. Pride is pregnant with all sins; humility is pregnant with all joy. Pride leads to characters; humility leads to confidence. Pride causes me to do things in my own strength; humility compels me to do things in God’s strength.

– Driscoll, Mark; Who Do You Think You Are? Finding Your True Identity in ChristThomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, copyright 2013; Page 40

Knowing This Helps Us Maintain the Radical Middle

Humility includes both knowing and accepting the truth about God and yourself as revealed in the Bible. A saint will grow in humility by rightly and biblically understanding identity in Christ. Knowing we are sinners saved by and kept by grace will keep us from a prideful, high self-esteem. Knowing we’re also saints in Christ will keep us from a painful, low self-esteem.

– Driscoll, Mark; Who Do You Think You Are? Finding Your True Identity in ChristThomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, copyright 2013; Page 41

The More Our Hearts Are Awed…

Because God is holy the utmost reverence becomes our approaches unto Him (Psalm 89:7; 99:5).  Yes, “at His footstool”, in the lowest posture of humility, prostrate before Him.  When Moses would approach unto the burning bush, God said “Put off thy shoes from off thy feet” (Exodus 3:5).  He is to be served “with fear” (Psalm 2:11).  Of Israel His demand was, “I will be sanctified in them that come nigh to Me, and before all the people I will be glorified” (Leviticus 10:3).  The more our hearts are awed by His ineffable holiness, the more acceptable will be our approaches unto Him.

Pink, Arthur W.; The Attributes of God; Kindle Edition; page 43

Among the Greatest Gifts Given to Us

True repentance is among the greatest gifts given to us because of Jesus’ work on the cross for our sins.  It it we find our humility, joy, forgiveness, hope, redemption, perspective, identity, and future.  Instead of going through killing shame or superficial ritual, true repentance looks deep into the new heart to discover the godly desires that are at the core of our being by virtue of regeneration and actively turns away from anything and everything that hinders our deepest regenerated desires to glorify God.

– Driscoll, Mark and Gary Breshears, Vintage Church: Timeless Truths and Timely Methods, Crossway Books, Wheaton, IL, 2008, p. 168-169

What Humility Is Not and What Humility Is

Humility is not dishonesty.  It does not baptize your inferiority complex, turning into a Christian asset.  Neither does humility deny God’s grace in your life.  Humility is simply knowing who you are and feeling comfortable with it.  Humility is never lying to yourself about your gifts, the knowledge you have acquired, or the value God has said you have or don’t have.  Humility is always measuring yourself by the Infinite.  It is not standing next to your fellow Christians and determine your comparative worth.  When you’re good, it is saying so.  When you do something right, it is knowing you did it right.  When you shine, it is knowing you shine.  And then humility means giving all of those flowers and bouquets back to the God who gave them to you.

– Steve Brown, A Scandalous Freedom: The Radical Nature of the Gospel, copyright 2004, Howard Books, page 225

What Characterizes You Leadership?

The point is, you don’t need to fear investment of any kind.  Investment represents a visionary decision to give freely, as often as you can, within the bounds of sound discipline and good sense.  Remember also that you set the tone as a leader.  If your leadership is characterized by love, humility and self-discipline, you will reap loyalty and devotion from the people you lead.  If they recognize that you invest your very life for their good, they will more readily follow your leadership and example.

– Haggai, Dr. John E, The Influential Leader: 12 Steps to Igniting Visionary Decision Making, copyright 2009, Harvest House Publishers: Eugene, Oregon, page 147