Here’s another good one from Lee for us to ponder…. Enjoy! -anita
IS GOD REALLY MASTER OVER YOUR LIFE?
Let me be completely honest here for a moment. There was a lengthy time in my life when I resented God having power over my life. There, I’ve said it! I also want to say that I’m not proud of that fact—not in the least.
I resented the fact that God could judge my actions and call me to account for actions that opposed Him. And I didn’t like that fact. I had always counted on myself to get me where I wanted to go, and rather felt like I didn’t need God to help me get there. Being honest here, even after becoming a Christian, I could praise Jesus and call Him Lord, Savior, and Almighty God…but had a really, really difficult time calling Him “Master.” It made me feel really subservient to Him to call Him master; like I was not much more than a slave and He was all-important. I will tell you I have come to the place in my walk of faith where I regularly, consciously, and reverently call Jesus my Master. And do so gladly!
So what’s really going on here? Seems to me I’m really talking about pride versus humility. An article I read recently entitled, “False Humility,” by Dr. John Blanchard, quotes Augustine saying this answer to the question, “What are the ways of God”: “…the first is humility, the second is humility, and the third is humility,” was the response. Augustine concludes that thought by saying, “…if humility does not precede all that we do, our efforts are meaningless.”
I grew up in a single-parent home, one where my mother worked constantly to pay the bills. In turn, I had to do a lot of my own parenting, working jobs for spending money, taking care of myself and meeting my needs in large measure. Not that I did this well, mind you, but I was all I had, or so I thought (that my life didn’t go completely off the tracks is a big part of my testimony). In fact, as the years have gone by, there have been countless instances where I really had to admit I was not as capable as I would like to think. There have been times when I had to come to acknowledge that I was completely fallible and not self-sufficient. As our pastor preached recently, God has allowed me to be “crushed” enough for me to come to know how much I need Him in my life. To acknowledge that He is God and I’m not!
As I’ve tried to work hard to make humility the watchword for my life (I’m still working on this!), I had to better understand some others words often associated with humility. I’ve come to believe that humility does not mean powerless and weak (although compared to our great God, we are both of these). No, I believe humility takes strength and resolve and is outward-looking. It’s really about others rather than self. “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and HE will exalt you.” [James 4:10] If we do for others while seeking their accolades we are walking completely in pride. As Blanchard put it in his article: “Great men never think they are great, and small men never think they are small.”
I want to be a man who uses whatever strength and talents I have to serve those around me. First family and friends, then anyone else God chooses to put in my path. One who expends his energy working for others rather than using that energy to plot ways where I can garner the plaudits of men. Our Lord Jesus described Himself in the book of Matthew as one who is “gentle and humble in heart.” [Mt 11:29] I’m sure I won’t ever attain that to the degree of our Lord, but I want to do what I can. My Master will take care of the rest.