A Balancing Act: Practicing Humility

My friend Jon Swanson wrote about Learning Humility. Jon referenced the story from Luke in which the disciples argued about which of them would be greatest.

Yesterday a lady from my church called and strongly encouraged me to push for opportunities to tell the story of our recent  IJM Freedom Tour. I hear what she’s saying. It’s a great story, but when I do that I feel like I’m seeking the spotlight.

How do I practice humility without hiding my light?

It’s not a rhetorical question. If you’ve been around Bouncing Back for a while you know it’s an issue we’ve wrestled with before. Each time I think I’ve finally settled it in my own mind, it reappears in a slightly different form.

I’ve concluded that it’s a bit like walking a tight rope (not that I know much about walking or balancing). You’re always in the rebalancing process, leaning a bit too far one way or the other and then compensating to come back to center. You’re never perfectly balanced or static, and the moment you think you are, THAT’S when you’re in danger of falling.

I don’t want to be one of those disciples seeking to be the greatest. I’m perfectly content if nobody pays attention to me, except that I have ideas to share. I believe those ideas, those words, might help some people, but they do no good unless others hear them. So I need to do what I can to make sure that happens, which means I need to seek attention.

Nobody wants to listen to a timid speaker or read the words of a faint-hearted writer. God wants us to proclaim boldly.

Of course it gets tricky, because they’re MY words and MY books and people come to hear ME speak. And pretty soon I’m the center of attention and it’s all about me and I need to lean the other way and remember the humility part, because it’s not about me at all.

Lean one way, lean the other. Let your light shine brightly, but make sure it shines on God, not on you. Be bold, serve quietly and humbly.

Got it all figured out?

Me neither.

Thankfully, I get to follow the example of someone who did it perfectly.

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