Day Five: Humility and Happiness

2 Corinthians 12:9-10 – “Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my weakness, that the strength of Christ may rest upon me. Wherefore I take pleasure in weaknesses: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”

“Lest Paul should exalt himself because of the exceeding greatness of revelations given him, a thorn in the flesh was sent him to keep him humble. Paul’s first desire was to have it removed, and he besought the Lord thrice that it might depart. The answer came that the trial was a blessing, that in the weakness and humiliation it brought, the grace and strength of the Lord could be better manifested. Paul at once entered upon a new stage in his relation to the trial. Instead of simply enduring it, he most gladly gloried in it. Instead of asking for deliverance, he took pleasure in it. He had learned that the place of humiliation is the place of blessing, of power, of joy.

“Every Christian passes through these two stages in his pursuit of humility. In the first he fears and flees and seeks deliverance from all that can humble him. He has not yet learned to seek humility at any cost. He has accepted the command to be humble, and seeks to obey it, though only to find how utterly he fails. He prays for humility, at times very earnestly, but in his secret heart he prays more, if not in word then in wish, to be kept from the very things that will make him humble. He is not yet so in love with humility as the beauty of the Lamb of God and the joy of heaven, that he would sell all to procure it.

“But can we hope to reach the stage in which this will be the case? Undoubtedly. And what will it be that brings us there? That which brought Paul there–a new revelation of the Lord Jesus. Nothing but the presence of God can reveal and expel self.

“It appears as if this were the highest lesson that he had to learn, full conformity to his Lord in that self-emptying where he gloried in weakness that God might be all.”  (Andrew Murray)

Prayer: Lord, help me to become nothing, undone before you, so that I may experience the blessing of not only enduring my trials and pains but also delight and glory in all so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

– JK

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