Do not put yourself forward in the king’s presence or stand in the place of the great; for it is better to be told, “Come up here,” than to be put lower in the presence of a noble. ~ Proverbs 25:6-7
Every time I think of the word humble, I can't help but sing that old song by Mac Davis in my head: "Oh, Lord, it's Hard to be Humble." I grew up in Texas where we sang that song a lot!
Of course, I think (hope) Mac was being a little tongue in cheek there because don't we all know that we should be humble?
I mean, that's the lesson most of us get growing up. Or should get, anyway.
But in practice it is often hard. Really hard.
I think there are two basic reasons it can be hard. The first reason is that the messages we've gotten in our lives have told us that we are better than others. Life has been easy or comfortable and so the affirmation comes that we are special in some way. Better than others.
But I think the second reason is one I've noticed more often. It comes from a complete opposite reason. The people in our lives as we grew up told us instead that we weren't worth much. Maybe even that we weren't loved. Or that we were special only in that everyone else was better than us.
We were emotionally abused (or physically).
Many of the people I've known in my life who seemed to be of a bragging nature, had this as their background. Somewhere along the line they needed to compensate for all the negative feedback they'd gotten in their lives.
The truth of the matter is that we each one of us is special. We each one of us is beloved. For who we are. We can be humble because we know that we all share this wonderful blessing of love from a God who wants to say to all of us:
"Come up here."
"You are mine, regardless of any message you get anywhere else, know that I love you."
Lord, help me to see each person I meet as my equal: equally loved by and dear to you. Amen