Sooner or later, my jeans all end up with holes in the knees.
This might be partially because I buy the cheaper brands or jeans from the op shop, where they’ve already been worn in a bit.
But it’s largely because I just spend a lot of time on my knees. I was thinking about this recently…
On any given day, I will be on my knees picking up toys, sweeping the kitchen floor, strapping the toddler into his high chair, bathing the kids, retrieving food from under the table, hugging the kids, having a “look at Mummy’s eyes” talk with a little one, reading an impromptu story, playing with toys and putting things away under the beds.
The posture of kneeling is one that evokes ideas of service, humility and prayer.
I’ve been thinking through how these three ideas relate to each other, especially as 2018 approaches and I think about which “word for the year” I would like to focus on. (This year my word has been “Discipline”.)
Humility is something that keeps coming to mind as an area I need and want to grow in.
And while I sure do spend a lot of time on my knees, serving those in my family, how much of this is done with a truly humble spirit, versus a spirit of pride or resentment?
So I’ve had these thoughts of humility and service and kneeling swirling around my head, trying to figure out how they are connected, and what I should focus on in my plans for next year.
Naturally, I come to this passage in Philippians 2:
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the glory of God the Father.
Here is what we learn about humility from this passage:
- Humility is a mindset.
- Humility means we should value others above ourselves and look to their interests.
- Jesus was equal with God, but he still “humbled himself” and “made himself nothing”. Humility means not clinging onto our rights or our position – it means not thinking that something is “below” us.
- Jesus was obedient to God, even to death on a cross. We should be obedient to God’s plan, even if we don’t like it.
- The ultimate purpose of humility is God’s glory.
And I love how we also see kneeling in this passage – that Jesus humbled himself, and then God lifted him up and one day every knee will bow before him.
Why? Because he is the King and he deserves all our worship and service!
It’s a beautiful reminder to me, in all my daily kneeling and serving, that everything I do should be done as worship to the Lord Jesus. This is true humility – to see our rightful position before God and to accept it with thanks.
And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
P.S. Credit to my friend Jo for the title 😉