Humility, Not Perfection

“The reward for humility and fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life.” Proverbs 22:4

I woke up this morning feeling frustrated. My husband and I are having a disagreement, one of our family members is having a major health crisis, my son is going through some issues, I’m way behind in filing my taxes, and last night I broke my eating boundaries, yet again!

So in my prayer time this morning, I said all the ‘right things’ I was supposed to say, “Thank you for waking me up this morning” and “This the day that you have made, I will rejoice and be glad in it.” But also I had a laundry list of issues to take to him:

  • fix my husband
  • heal my step-son from cancer
  • give me wisdom to deal with my son
  • help me to figure out my taxes and please don’t let me get audited
  •  take away my cravings so I can stop eating sweets

Is that what your life (and your prayer life) sometimes looks like?

As I poured out my list of  complaints and problems, the Holy Spirit lovingly whispered this phrase to me: ‘practice humility, not perfection.’ 

Say what? How am I not being humble? Look at all of my problems? Look at my schedule? Look at my life!

As I heard my third, request to God to help ME, I got it. I saw my prideful spirit.  I realize that pride has two sides: one that boasts about how wonderful you are, and another that boasts about how stressful and busy you are.

Why? Because whether positive or negative, at the root of pride is SELF–it can be self-love or self-hatred, but it’s all about self.

Anything that consumes your focus so much and takes your eyes of God is pride. Anything that you talk about more than you exhault the name of God is pride.

God is showing me that my incessant need to ‘ fix my life’ is a form of pride. My constant need to be better, to complete my to-do list and my frustrating attempts to reach my ideal weight is all about me. So the painful questions I asked myself today are:

1. Am I striving to please myself or to please God?
2. Am I using God to make my life better or do I truly want to have a relationship with Him that’s not solely based on me?
3. Am I striving for humility or perfection?

My response today is “ouch”, “ouch”, and “ouch”!

So this morning, my quiet time looked a lot different. I repented and as weird as this may sound, I asked God how He was doing? I know, it sounds ridiculous but it was what I needed to take the focus off myself and on to Him.

I reminded myself of how much I hate being around people who are over-consumed with their life, their issues and their problems, and realized that that’s exactly how I am with God. Lord help me!

“As in water face reflects face, so the heart of man reflects the man.” Proverbs 27:19

Then, God invited me to a place of rest. He took me with him to Psalm 23, and my mind shifted from stress and worry to ‘green pastures’ and ‘still waters.’ I left his presence not feeling burdened and weighted down by the magnitude of today. I felt that whatever would come my way, together God and I would handle it.

What joy!!!

Although the movie was before my time, I’m familiar with the quote from the movie Casablanca, “The could be the start of a beautiful friendship.”

That’s exactly how I felt (I feel). God wants friendship. He wants relationship. He does not need my morning rituals, nor does He care if I read a devotional everyday if I don’t ever put into action what I am learning.

Regardless of how long you’ve know the Lord, there is always something He wants to show us. He is always drawing us closer to Him and calling us to strip away the false pretense. He wants the ‘real’ us.

Yes, the problems will still be there, and I will probably break my eating boundaries again, but I will practice lifting us the name of the Lord, more than I talk about my problems.

And isn’t it funny that when I magnify His name, suddenly my burdens don’t seem so bad after all.

 

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6 Comments on "Humility, Not Perfection"

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Mary R
Member
Mary R

Thank you for sharing that with us Cathy. You are an awesome encourager

Bonnie
Guest
Bonnie

This is beautiful and so true. Hidden pride because we exalt our problems along side our heavenly Father. Bless you Woman of God for standing naked before God and man!

Janski
Member

“Anything that consumes your focus so much and takes your eyes of God is pride. Anything that you talk about more than you exhaust the name of God is pride.”

Wow. I could just keep cutting and pasting but it is enough to say thank you for letting God work in your heart and then sharing where you’ve been so that He can use that very salve on my heart!

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