Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Wrapping a towel around my waist as I head out the door

When pride comes, then comes disgrace,
    but with the humble is wisdom. Proverbs 11:2

So Dave from 4Tucson preached again Sunday. And it’s all about humility, as in

So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, by taking the form of a servant.

Because, as Dave likes to remind us again and again, unity is what was on the heart of not only Paul as being the point of it all, but also, unity is what was on the heart of Jesus, on the night he was betrayed, this was His prayer: May they be brought to complete unity so that the world know that You sent Me and that You have loved them even as You have loved Me.

Jesus chose humility at every step of life...from where to be born to how He died. Humility is thinking of yourself less, not thinking less of yourself. It doesn't say, "be humble," it says, "Humble yourself." Choose to go low.

 So that we come a step closer to being the answer to Christ's prayer.

And Dave passed out this green sheet of paper outside under the olive trees, a little private in-your-prayer-closet sort of self-test on how one is doing in the realm of humility, and choosing to go low. Choosing the mind of Christ. And I sort of breezed through it yesterday, yeah, yeah.  And the Spirit brought it back to me time and time again, throughout the day, this thing about going low.

Because I noticed some offensing taking place throughout the day, when I didn’t leap into “hardly even noticing when others do it wrong.”

And He in all His kindness had already pointed out that I wasn’t so good at point number eight, about not labeling people or avoiding quick judgments. And yesterday was full of number nines, about accepting unfair criticism and number thirteen, accepting blame when I have compromised because of fear. Yep, sometimes I compromise because I am afraid of fifteen-year-olds.

And then there’s fifteen and twenty, “I accept God’s testing and discipline without grumbling,” and “I am a thankful person.”

And the little green paper ends with “There’s no grading curve. Nothing that says, 15 out of 20 means ‘Christ-like attitude,’ and 10 out of 20 means ‘nice start.’” Rather Jesus expects them all out of me, all the time. If I scored less that 20, then I need to step into the humbling me as I take my sin to the cross.

And all of this reminds me of Tom Copp's big word, that he used to work into almost every sermon: 
hupomenó: to stay behind, to await, endure
Original Word: ὑπομένω
Part of Speech: Verb
Transliteration: hupomenó
Phonetic Spelling: (hoop-om-en'-o)
Short Definition: I remain behind, endure
Definition: (a) I remain behind, (b) I stand my ground, show endurance, (c) I endure, bear up against, persevere.

I remain behind.