What Does It Mean To Be Humble?

Imagine a young intern who was told by the company executive to “follow me.” This young intern would shadow his boss and learn by watching how he operated in meetings, how he addressed others, and how he did business. The intern was then given such responsibilities as carrying the materials, watching over and distributing the reports. After a period of proven faithfulness as an intern, this person is made to be an assistant.

As the assistant, he now has more input and more independent responsibilities. He may be asked to write the report or contribute in the meetings in explaining the reports and strategies. He may be asked to set the appointments, prepare the meetings, and set the stage for the executive to be effective.
What does it mean to be humble?

When I was a young girl, I thought being humble meant to hide my abilities and talents. To display them would be “showing off.” So, I hid what I could do–play piano, write, talk, sew, organize and sing. I put myself in a corner and acted shy.

As I grew older, people found out that I had many talents, so I thought being humble was to make them work to find out and then play “hard to get” rather than volunteer. This was dangerous because when I saw others doing a lesser job than I could do, I would judge them rather than step up to help. I was humbling myself in the sight of men.

By observing Jesus, I have discovered that being humble means being obedient to the Father and using the abilities He gives me when He wants me to. I’m sure Jesus could feed many people miraculously anytime, but he only did when the command was given to feed the 5,000. He told the people, “you follow me because you ate.” That fame or ability didn’t spur him on to quickly to do it again to make the crowd happy. When he was arrested in the Garden of Gethsemane, he said he had the authority to call upon the heavenly host to fight for him, yet he did not because it was not the Father’s will. Such restraint.

Being humble means to submit yourself and all you can do at the Father’s time and request. If you are a musician, use your talent when called upon. Not every gig is yours. If you are a cook, cook for your Father’s glory, be it in a gourmet restaurant or feeding the homeless. If you are a teacher, instruct the ones He puts in front of you.

We are all needed to do our part. Our heavenly Father knows when and how. Humble yourself in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.