Tuesday, July 12, 2011
I love when God repeats himself to me, I call it a Sacred Echo (taken from Margaret Feinberg's book by the same title, one I highly recommend). It is as if He doesn't want me to miss what He is saying to me, something He deems important enough to say again, just so I don't miss the impact.
It happened this morning. I was reading in Spiritual Disciplines Devotional by Valerie Hess, talking about the discipline of submission (ugh, none of us want to submit, do we?) I like to think of it as the discipline of surrender (to God). That sits better with me. Since my "signature sin" is pride, (thinking I can do it on my own without God or forever learning to take my "God coat" off and not try to fix people or situations to be happy, comfortable or in harmony with me), my ears always perk up when i hear the word "humility." Hess says, "The discipline of submission is also the best route to a spirit of true humility... the root word of humble gives us the word humus or earth.
In the discipline of submission we become so firmly rooted in the soil of God's love that we are able to live in an attitude of service and humility, full of joy and peace. We know who we are and we can let others be who they are. There is no envy or competition; we have nothing to prove because Jesus has proven it all for us in His death and resurrection." Letting others be who they are were the exact words I've written in my journal, asking God to help me LET GO of my expectations and agendas for people and accept them for who they are and truly be okay with that. So those words jumped off the page to me. And God was giving me a glimpse of HOW to do that: be humble.
Then I picked up Ann Voskamp's book, 1000 Gifts, which, if you haven't read it, you MUST! A life changer of a read. The exact same words about humility grabbed my attention:"The word humility comes from the Latin word, humus: the kind of earth that grows good crops. God gives the earth to humus people (Matt 5:5 Blessed are the humble for they shall inherit the earth). Humility is that good humus that grows gratitude that yield abundant joy." Then I read this quote by GBF Hallock: "I used to think that God's gifts were on shelves one above the other and that the taller we grew in Christian character the easier we should reach them. I find now that God's gifts are on shelves one beneath the other, and that it is not a question of growing taller but of stooping lower and that we have to go down, always down, to get His best gifts."
Kind of like Jesus stooping to wash the feet of the disciples. They should have been washing HIS feet, but He humbled himself, taking the form of a bond servant instead of grasping for His rightful place as God, He chose to submit to His disciples. It is called "the way of the towel."
Lord, help me to humble myself and be willing to walk the way of the towel.
Listen, be aware and you, too, may hear His sacred echo... it's worth listening for.