Sunday, August 30, 2009

Want a piece of humble pie?

One of the greatest workings of God in my daily life is when he opens my eyes to truth, allowing me to see something new. When this happens, I have a choice to walk in that truth, adopting it into my internal posture. Or I can choose to slough it aside, especially if I find it too hard or too painful.

This summer I had one of those light bulb moments. This profound "Aha" moment was, of all places, during memory verse time while I was helping with my 8 year old's VBS group. The theme for the week was "Be a World Changer" and the virtue for the day was "Be Wise" The scripture being James 3:17

But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere.

I have always highly valued wisdom. As a teenager I remember praying for wisdom above all else. I love the story of Solomon. Proverbs is one of my favorite books of the Bible. As I thought about this passage that I've read many times before, it dawned on me that I have valued the wrong kind of wisdom. Verses 13 to 16 told me more about that wisdom.

If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom. But if you are bitterly jealous and there is selfish ambition in your heart, don’t cover up the truth with boasting and lying. For jealousy and selfishness are not God’s kind of wisdom. Such things are earthly, unspiritual, and demonic. For wherever there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there you will find disorder and evil of every kind.

Wisdom breeds humility and yields to others. It puts others first rather than self. When I examined my own desire for wisdom I squirmed as I realized that it came from selfishness and pride. To be painfully honest, I want wisdom so that I will look good. I want to be able to always know what the right thing to do or say is without ever making a mistake. I want others to like and admire me. I want to be better than others. It has nothing to do with humility at all! It looks so ugly when I write it down like that but it never seemed that way. It's so deceiving.

If you have been tracking with me this past year you know that I have been struggling to be free from resentment. The Lord's answer has been to yield my spirit to others and cultivate a servant's heart. And now I learn that God has actually been giving me the keys to obtaining the wisdom that I have prayed for all my life.

In the topsy turvy kingdom of God, the key to wisdom is found in humility. The wisdom of the world stems from pride and selfishness. I do value humility as well. I just never saw how wisdom and humility were so closely connected. In fact, it was the topic of my very first blog post.

Now that is humbling. It's time to go and eat my pie.


kari bryant said...

Hi Ruth! I really like this, and identify.

Daveda said...

Really good post. I enjoyed reading it. I always tend to think of humility as being able to admit I am nothing and can do noting apart from God. I need HIm to be a vital part of my life in every way :)

Hi there I stopped over here from A Former Leaders Journey and thought I would say hello.

It's nice to meet you. Please stop by sometime and say hello :)

Ruth said...

Thank you Kari.

You know what I've noticed about you - that you have a wisdom about you that is humble and unassuming. Sometimes it looks like you ramble but it all makes so much sense. It's so delightful and unpretentious. I wish you would get back to blogging.

Ruth said...

Hi Daveda, thanks for stopping by. I always like to make new friends. I'll check your blog out too.

Chocolate Girl said...

Ruth-I read this article and think I really feel like this also,but I didn't realize it!
You are so gifted with words.
I feel about as intelligent as a slug :)

Ruth said...

Hi CG - good to see you. Thanks for joining me in my pie. It's nice to know I'm not alone. And you are so not a slug!

Valorosa said...

Humble pie is very tasty ... :-)