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Psalms 8:3-4 "When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?"

When we look at God’s great creation, we wonder how God can possibly be concerned about people who are a constant disappointment to Him. I live close to the Great Smoky Mountains and, let me tell you, if you want to feel small, take a drive up to one of the overlooks with me. When you look out at the vastness of the mountains and see the works of God’s hands, you will find the meaning of the word humble. Looking out over Niagara Falls will render that same effect. How can anyone look upon these majestic, natural wonders and not believe in an all powerful God? I’ve viewed both and felt His greatness and my smallness!

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Deuteronomy 8:2-3 "And thou shalt remember all the way which the LORD thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no. And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live."

What would it take to humble you? Why did God lead the Israelites in the wilderness for forty years? Most people will answer this question: “because they murmured and complained,” or “because they were not ready to fight the Philistines.” But that is only part of the answer. In the scriptures above (Deut. 8:2-3) Moses said He ”led thee these forty years in the wilderness to humble thee.”

WHAT IF

What if some of the things that have happened to you in the past, things you have wondered about, things that have caused you to ask, “Why Me,” happened to humble you. Did it work? Were you humbled or did it just make you mad? Were you humbled or did you become depressed and good for nothing? If it truly humbled you, you will come out of the desert stronger and ready to conquer a new land, like Joshua and Caleb were when they came out of the wilderness after the forty years of wandering were over. On the other hand, if the wilderness adventure does not humble you, it could possible kill you, like it did all but two of all those that came out of Egypt!

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Exodus 3:1-6 "Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb. And the angel of the LORD appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I. And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God."

Moses learned humility long before he crossed the wilderness and came to the point in the scripture in Deuteronomy 8. Moses didn’t enter Canaan, either, but not from lack of humility for he learned that back at the burning bush in Exodus 3. When we come before God, we need to adjust our attitude to one of reverence. Now, that doesn’t mean we can’t speak to God as a friend. That doesn’t mean we have to fall down on our face every time we talk to God. God hears you pray when you are driving along in your car. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 says to: “Pray without ceasing.” He doesn’t expect you to remain on your knees 24 hours a day 7 days a week. He is constantly on my mind and I feel I can consult Him about anything at any time. I don’t have to wait until I get in my bedroom at night and get on my knees by my bedside. He’s my loving Father who I can go to at any time with any problem. But I do reverence Him, and I do feel humbled in His presence. He is also still almighty God and can blink me out of this world with one word!

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Psalms 131:1-2 "LORD, my heart is not haughty, nor mine eyes lofty: neither do I exercise myself in great matters, or in things too high for me. Surely I have behaved and quieted myself, as a child that is weaned of his mother: my soul is even as a weaned child."

TRUE HUMILITY WILL BRING CONTENTMENT

Sometimes we elevate ourselves a little higher than others and this is not a good Christian attitude. When we set our eyes on what others have or begin to compare ourselves to others, we become dissatisfied with our lives. We need to learn to quite ourselves in the Lord and put others before ourselves. When we do that, we can free ourselves and our thoughts to actually serve Him and stop worrying about what everyone else is doing. When we put ourselves last we can give Him our all and that will be enough. We won’t have to worry about measuring up to someone’s expectations. We only have to be our best for Him.

Paul learned the lesson of both contentment and humility.

    Philippians 4:11-13 “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.”

Paul was focused on what he was supposed to do, not what he thought he should have in this life. Paul had his priorities straight and he was grateful for all the gifts God had given him. He was concentrating on things eternal and not desiring earthly things. He was not full of pride and that was a good thing because he was a very intelligent man. At about age fourteen, he was sent to study under Gamaliel, one of the great rabbis of the time, the grandson of Hillel. In Galatians 1:14 he makes the statement: ” I profited in the Jews' religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.” Yet Paul knew how to bring himself down to the level of anyone in need. It is important to be able to humble yourself before God and before your fellow Christians but also before the unsaved who need your assistance. Never think of yourself as better than anyone else. But for the grace of God you could be the beggar on the street with no home and no computer to be reading this devotion on. You could be living in a cardboard box right now. I grew up in a one bedroom apartment behind a bar on Woodward Ave. in the middle of Detroit. I thank God everyday for my beautiful home in the country. I grew up in a home where, as a child, I had to get up and quietly get ready for church and slip out to wait on the bus so I would not disturb my family. I thank God now for my Christian family. I don’t take anything in my life for granted. I feel I have been about as low as one can go and I don’t want to raise myself up high for fear of falling. If God wants me lifted up, I’ll leave that to Him. I’m content to just be as long as I can be for Him!

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1 Peter 5:5-7 Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble. Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

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