“Morning by morning, O Lord, you hear my voice”
Humility — An Old-Fashioned Suit
(Please read 1 Peter 5:5-7)
American culture puts much emphasis these days on having high self-esteem and on winning. In the current infatuation with sports and sports figures, we see many exhibitions of pride, greed and other characteristics not associated with humility. But our text speaks of clothing ourselves with humility! How outlandish does that sound to a young man seeking to claw his way to the top in his profession in order to have the biggest house on the block?
To say that humility is old-fashioned clothing is not to say that everybody in previous generations was humble. Not at all. We have had social climbers, money grubbers and even slave masters in our history, none of whom were fitted with suits of humility. But Christians are to be figuratively clothed with humility as well as righteousness. If we forget Peter’s exhortation, there are a number of other passages that teach us to be humble. Even so, sometimes we lose our humility, maybe so gradually that we aren’t aware of what is happening. As ridiculous as it sounds, we can even get puffed up over some unlikely things, like a talent for speaking or singing or a position of preeminence in a congregation.
As our text indicates, God opposes the proud. Pride is dangerous territory, and Jesus went to great lengths to disabuse his disciples of that awful characteristic. This man who had humbled himself in coming to earth as one of us, who had no place to lay his head, even performed the servile task of washing his disciples’ feet. Let our efforts to become Christ-like show that same kind of humility.