Romans 12:3 (NIV)
“For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.”
Paul is reminding us yet another important truth today. Paul is reminding us that each one of us needs to remain humble, no matter how big our britches get.
Many of us are tied to our titles. Manager, President, Pastor, Bishop, Professor, Rancher etc. The list could go on for days of ways we often identify by what we do.
Sometimes it is hard for us to step back from the hard work we have done with the multiple ways luck has helped us along the way and eat a piece of humble pie.
God made each of us in His image. That means that each one of us in this church and in this community, was created, by hand, in the divine image of God. With that comes our desires, hopes, wants, needs, personalities, abilities, and all the wonderful things that help make us, us.
I am amazed every Sunday morning when the choir enters on stage with full confidence and ability. When they sing they glorify God with the amazing voices God gave each of them as well as the ability of the choir director to lead them and the gifted hands of our piano player to accompany.
I am amazed every Sunday when our bell choir performs and the bell choir director leads them and they sound like a heavenly orchestra. While much hard work goes into practicing each of the ladies who stand before us has been given a desire and a true gift to ring the bells so wonderfully.
Paul reminds us today that while we all are uniquely made and in the full splendor and glory of God we must remain humble.
In addition to my awe at the incredible skill of our choir and bell choir, I am also always impressed with the hard work they put into every Sunday they perform as well as always keeping the focus on glorifying God rather than themselves.
When I was Sr. Training Manger at a company in Pueblo I would quite frequently need to hold staff meetings. Like many staffs across the globe I had many people who wanted most to stand out as superstars with only a few that wanted our team to be successful. On many occasions it was absolutely necessary with so many Type A personalities to remind them that while it was a team it was not a democracy. I was the person responsible for their success and their failures. I, not them, had to answer directly to the Director. When individualism and selfishness would rule the day I would sometimes find myself having to gently interrupt with “Hi, my name is Lou and I’m the boss.” That often would get the team back to task. I rarely had to remind them I was the boss but when I did they got the message.
We can get caught up with titles, including even the title of saved Christian. Paul is reminding us that our faith must lead us rather than our ideologies. We must refer back to the words of Jesus as well as the authors of scripture when we find ourselves being tempted and manipulated by the seduction of titles and our own success. No one humbled himself more than Jesus. Think about the incredible reserve that Jesus had throughout his ministry with the titles, Messiah, Son of Man, Jesus Christ, and of course the Son of God.
Humility is important so that we don’t make others insecure or devalue the uniqueness to which God made us all. Just as not everyone is made to lead a church nor is everyone made to be a doctor or lawyer or manager. We all have unique gifts and graces with none more important or greater in the eyes of God.
I pray we continue to use our gifts and graces to glorify God in our families and community. May we continue to use the success of our lives to point others towards God and the faith that has saved each and every one of us.
May it be so,
Rev. Lou Ward
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La Junta United Methodist Church
601 San Juan Ave
La Junta, CO 81050
Phone: (719) 384-7717
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