The only way up is down.

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Philippians 2:2-9

What would it take or what makes you to be humble and willing? Is it your boss at work? Your husband, wife, kids or parents at home or the police maybe? Which one of you in here likes to be the last one? Smallest? Or at the bottom? To be honest no one likes being on the last or the smallest.  So, what would you do to get to the top? How low would you go to go to the top? We live in world where it is dog eat dog; watch out for number one, survival of the fittest. These are just some ways of how they say we should do if we want to get to the top. As belivers do we do the same in our lives, are we busy trying to get to the top like the rest of the world where it is all about me, myself and I or we like Jesus Christ who went from highest of heights to the lowest of lows?

Have you ever thought what would have happen to you and me if Christ chose, being the same form and equality as God not to humble and empty Himself taking the form of a servant, to be born like me and you and humbling Himself even to death on the cross? The worldly way up is the heavenly way down. Humility is not a characteristic that this world exalts in, but this is because they do not understand God’s ways. The world thinks that when you are humble it means your weak. I am not saying that we should humble and willing that other people take advantage of us that is not being humble.

The Gospel does not teach that we are to be on the top on the contrary Jesus said in Mark 9:35, “If anyone wants to be first, he shall be last and serving of all.” The way to greatness in life is by serving others. I believe Jesus demonstrated this perfectly in that His purpose was not to make everyone in Jerusalem to like Him, and get as many likes on His Facebook page or to gain the most popularity and followers like on Twitter and Instagram, or to gain a position of great earthly power like Vladimir Putin. His mission was to lay down His life for His sheep (John 10:11-15). He came to serve and not to be served (Mark 10:45).

What is a humble willing heart? Even more importantly, why does God oppose those who are not humble and wants us to be humble? Is it because pride destroys and corrupts us? Is it because a humble heart listens and is willing to do what is right from what it has heard? Is this not the reason why God said that David was a man after My heart?

It takes a lot to have a humble and a willing heart. It is with a humble heart, that we are able to look deep down within us and see whom we really are. We begin to understand how dependent we are on God. That were nothing but dust without Him, each, and everything we need to live is provided, sustained, and maintained by Him alone. John 15:5 is clear that apart from Him we can do nothing.

We are also willing to acknowledge our human weakness and allow Christ to show His power through us. Paul rightly understood this and in 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 he says that in our weakness, God’s power is revealed and we are made perfect through it. It is in our weakness that we need to humble our self and be willing to turn to God. Because things that are not of God will not bring us up, it might for some time but eventually it will take us down even lower than before. We need to remember this at all times if we want to go up and not down.

We begin to understand our insufficiency and powerlessness. By looking at our self, we realise how dirty and unclean we are in God’s presence. Have you heard the saying ‘the closer you come to God the dirtier you become’? Meaning that we look at our selves differently not at the way we look, but we look at who we are through God’s holiness. Isaiah 6:5 is the best example of this when Isaiah realised where he was in light of God’s holiness he cried out acknowledging his uncleanness and sinfulness he was scared because he thought God would destroy him.

However, being humble does not just make us to acknowledge who we are and understand ourselves better but we must also be willing. We must have a willing teachable attitude since we are all children of God therefore equal, we should strive to grow more in humbleness and willingness. If you want to know God and have a relationship with Him, the only way to go is to bring yourself down so that he will bring you up.

This way of going upward goes against what the world believes and teaches. Being humble and willing is hard at times; it can be very humiliating and very difficult. We should grow in our ways and thoughts. To grow up, we must first be humble enough to lay down our pride. To receive, we must first be willing to let go of the things that hold us down. The one who has a humble and a willing heart, like that of a little child will have a stronger desire to obey, and to please God just as the child is with its parents. Our hearts are to be transformed, and we are to become humble and willing as a little child.

Unless you are humble and willing, you cannot die to self and rise in Christ. Therefore it will always be what ‘I’ think, what ‘I’ want, what ‘I’ need but it should be “not MY will, but YOUR will be done. “This requires a softness of heart, which is a humble heart that is willing and open to learning, hearing, listening, and making changes in our lives to be more like Christ. Would you humble yourself and surrender your will down to someone that you do not know or trust?

The humble heart bears the fruits of obedience through its willingness to change. Therefore, we will not rebel against God because we have truly repented and have been oned and were at one ment with Him. When we draw near to God, He draws near to us. Thus, we agree with Him, in that we hate what He hates and love what He loves. We value the welfare of others ahead of our own and are mindful to their needs; we are willing to sacrifice our self so that we can serve others. It is by lifting others up that we are lifted. A great person is not the one that necessarily does all the greatest things; a great person is the one that makes others great.

Therefore, the way UP is down! This is the pathway of a humble and willing heart! That is teachable, approachable, yielding. A humble heart is willing to hear, repent, and obey. A humble heart that maintains a readiness for change, nurtures the willing heart within, for growing in the Ways of The Lord. A humble heart will be willing to let go of the things of the world that are down because it wants to go up.

If you want to be lifted up by God, you first need to be humble and willing. There are no shortcuts to going up; only God can truly lift you up. If we want to truly be exalted, we need to truly be humble and willing to say, “Lord, not my will but Yours be done” (Luke 22:42).

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One response to “The only way up is down.

  1. It brings to mind the scripture in 1 Peter 5, summed up:
    Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. 1 Peter 5:6

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