“And He gives grace generously. As the Scriptures say, ‘God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.’ So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world.”
James 4:6-8 NLT
Kingly son of Egypt to keeper of sheep. That’s not much of an upwardly mobile move. One of the greatest examples of a humility is found in Moses . . . a prince who was removed to the pasture. Numbers records, “Now Moses was very humble—more humble than any other person on earth.” (Num 12:3 NLT)
Moses didn’t choose to leave his lofty perch for the life of a lowly shepherd. His own ambition led to humiliation. The Lord used his humiliating experience to help the future leader of Israel gain humility. But, there’s a difference between being humiliated and becoming humble.
Elizabeth Peale Allen writes, “Moses understood that his life, worthless as it might seem, was in some inexplicable way of infinite importance. This paradox between being nothing and everything is the beginning of humility.”
God used Moses’ failure to forge a great follower of faith.
God Gives Grace. He is generous in giving grace. Paul recognized that he was given a “thorn in his flesh” to humble his haughtiness. He asked God to remove it . . . God chose to give grace instead of relief. Paul confesses, “Each time He said, ‘My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’ So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.” (2 Cor 12:9 NLT). In our times of despair and frustration, grace is generously given.
God Gives Guidance. When we are weak, He gives us strength. When we are lost, He gives us direction. When we are humble, He is honored. The psalmist reminds us, “He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to His name.” (Ps 23:3 NLT) Our proximity to God provides His presence. Matthew Henry writes, “Those that are humble, that distrust themselves, and desire to be taught and to follow Divine guidance, will find rest for their souls in the Savior.” David encourages us, “He leads the humble in doing right, teaching them His way.” (Ps 25:9 NLT)
God Gets The Glory. God can handle each and every impossible situation. In the middle of our adverse struggles, He will provide an answered solution. The end result is God . . . and God alone getting the glory. God told Moses “ Then I will gain honor over Pharaoh and over all his army, that the Egyptians may know that I am the Lord” (Exodus 14:3-4). Isaiah writes, “You are my servant, Israel, and you will bring me glory.” (Is 49:3 NLT) When we give in to God and give over our pride, He gets the glory.
The Message gives insight into letting go, letting God and learning grace, “So let God work His will in you. Yell a loud NO to the Devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet YES to God and He’ll be there in no time. Quit dabbling in sin. Purify your inner life. Quit playing the field. Hit bottom, and cry your eyes out. The fun and games are over. Get serious, really serious. Get down on your knees before the Master; it’s the only way you’ll get on your feet.” (James 4:7-10 MSG)