Reading: Psalm 131
A song of ascents. Of David.
My heart is not proud, LORD,
my eyes are not haughty;
I do not concern myself with great matters
or things too wonderful for me.
But I have calmed and quieted myself,
I am like a weaned child with its mother;
like a weaned child I am content.
Israel, put your hope in the LORD
both now and forevermore (NIV).
Through the spruce boughs — photo by David Kitz
In my personal quiet time this morning I highlighted this verse. When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom (Proverbs 11:2).
The wisdom that comes with humility is a rare commodity in today’s world. It appears that the crude bravado of boasting egocentrics is winning the day. Every field of human endeavor has its loudmouthed champions—men who heap scorn on meeker souls.
But Jesus has a message that runs completely contrary to this approach. In his Sermon on the Mount, he said, “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth” (Matthew 5:5). On another occasion, the disciples asked Jesus this question, “Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
This is Jesus’ response. “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.” (See Matthew 18:1-5).
Jesus turns this world’s operating system on its head. He heaps honor on the weak, the humble and the vulnerable. He praises the soul of the weaned child—the one who takes the position of humility. Of course, Jesus is right. The folly of the proud ends in disgrace, but the humility of the meek ends in honor, and a glorious inheritance.
Your eternal destiny is determined by your humility. These words of Jesus are an ominous warning: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”
I need to become like the weaned child of Psalm 131. On Christmas Day we are reminded that Jesus became that weaned child–that child in a manger.
Can I truthfully say these words? My heart is not proud, LORD, my eyes are not haughty. Have I calmed and quieted myself? Am I like a weaned child with its mother? Am I content? Becoming like the weaned child requires change. I need to change. Jesus asks me to change. How about you?
Response: Father God, help me to change. I want to become more like Jesus. He was the servant of all. Help me to avoid the pitfall of pride. Teach how to quiet my soul and be content in you. Amen.
Your Turn: Are you learning to quiet your soul before God?
Merry Christmas to all!