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A Fresh Start

In many countries, health laws prohibit reselling or reusing old mattresses. Only landfills will take them. Tim Keenan tackled the problem and today his business employs a dozen people to extract the individual components of metal, fabric, and foam in old mattresses for recycling. But that’s only part of the story. Journalist Bill Vogrin wrote, “Of all the items Keenan recycles . . . it’s the people that may be his biggest success” (The Gazette, Colorado Springs). Keenan hires men from halfway houses and homeless shelters, giving them a job and a second chance. He says, “We take guys nobody else wants.”

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Rooted

Joash must have been confused and frightened when he was told about the evil deeds of his grandmother Athaliah. She had murdered his brothers to usurp the power of the throne in Judah. But baby Joash had been safely hidden away by his aunt and uncle for 6 years (2 Chron. 22:10-12). As he grew, he enjoyed the love and instruction of his caregivers. When Joash was only 7 years old, he was secretly crowned king and his grandmother was overthrown (23:12-15).

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Giving It To God

A hero to a generation of people who grew up after World War II, Corrie ten Boom left a legacy of godliness and wisdom. A victim of the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands, she survived to tell her story of faith and dependence on God during horrendous suffering.

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Born To Rescue

After the terrorist attack and the collapse of the Twin Towers in New York City on September 11, 2001, Cynthia Otto took care of the search-and-rescue dogs. Years later she established a Working Dog Center where young pups are put through specialized training to prepare them to help victims of disaster.

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Sow What?

On the clock tower of my alma mater is an Art Deco bas-relief sculpture titled The Sower. The inscription beneath it is from Galatians 6:7, “Whatsoever a man soweth.” Michigan State University remains a leader in agricultural research, but despite many improvements in farming techniques and crop production, this fact remains: Seeds of corn will not produce a crop of beans.

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More Of Him, Less Of Me

While I was pastoring a church early in my ministry, my daughter Libby asked me, “Dad, are we famous?” To which I replied, “No, Libby, we’re not famous.” She thought for a moment and then said rather indignantly, “Well, we would be if more people knew about us!”

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Let Me Be Singing

When I asked a friend how his mother was getting along, he told me that dementia had robbed her of the ability to remember a great many names and events from the past. “Even so,” he added, “she can still sit down at the piano and, without sheet music, beautifully play hymns by memory.”

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Not Even A Nod

Traffic was bad and everyone was cranky on that hot afternoon. I noticed a car with two young men waiting to enter traffic from a fast-food restaurant driveway. I thought it was nice when the driver ahead of me let them in.

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Step Up!

When a woodchuck started eating our garage (well, just the trim), I bought a live trap with plans to transplant the little guy to a park. I baited it with an assortment of goodies and opened the trap door. The next morning, I was excited to see a little critter in my trap—until I noticed that it was no woodchuck. I had snared a skunk.

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A Picture Of Humility

During the Easter season, my wife and I attended a church service where the participants sought to model the events that Jesus and His disciples experienced on the night before He was crucified. As part of the service, the church staff members washed the feet of some of the church volunteers. As I watched, I wondered which was more humbling in our day—to wash another person’s feet or to have someone else wash yours. Both those who were serving and those being served were presenting distinct pictures of humility.

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33 thoughts on “A Picture Of Humility

  1. bubbles says:

    It’s interesting to observe people of various cultures. It seems that people of some cultures appear to have very humble ways. When I have been in their presence I have been touched by their humility. I wonder how they are taught this humility. Their sweet ways humble me.

  2. hera says:

    Someone said to me that saying I am humble shows that I am not…humility is a quality we can not claim to have.

  3. mario says:

    Thank you for the wonderful message about humility. In one of our bible studies, we took notice of the Apostle Peter’s act of humility when he praised the Lord for the wisdom He gave Apostle Paul(2 Peter 3:14-16). Instead of being angry with Apostle Paul (for he was the one who had accused him one time of being a hypocrite), Apostle Peter praised him for the work he is doing for the Lord. (Gal 2:11-14) King David’s prayer in Psalm 19:12-14 is a also a nice reminder for believers/servants in being humble. Thank you.

  4. eternallyhis says:

    One time when trying to rid myself of the pride that God revealed to me that had welled up within me, I soon discovered I could not rid my own self of pride. The more I confessed it to God as the sin that I knew it was, the prouder I became of my efforts to humble myself. :( I stayed on my knees in fervent prayer, struggling with it until I finally confessed to God, “If I am to be rid of this pride, You will have to rid me of it, as I cannot seem to get rid of it my own self.”
    I left it with Him, and soon was led into approximately one week of feeling like my prayers were hitting empty air. One after the other my faults kept coming to my mind, which I later realized was the ‘accuser of the brethren’ attacking me. But at the time, I only knew I felt miserable, unable to sense the Presence of the Holy Spirit, and I had to agree with all the accusations, unable to deny my faults. The thought came that ‘I had gone too far, being so prideful that God would not want anything to do with me.’ Then came the ultimate lie, when the thought came, God probably isn’t even real. I knew this was a lie, because God had given me His Love for my hubby when I had no love of my own for him. I certainly did not imagine that love, nor was I able to conjure it up on my own.
    It’s like God gave Satan just enough rope to hang himself and to humble me in the process. :)
    All praise to God for reminding me of something I had read of taking God at His Word, thanking Him for never leaving us, nor forsaking us, whether we can ‘feel’ His Presence, or not, we can be sure He is there. Hebrews 13:5
    It wasn’t long after I began praising Him and thanking Him for being with me, whether a minute, an hour or day?? I only know, all at once I was aware of His Holy Presence again and thank Him so very much for allowing me that horrible, yet needful experience, giving me even more assurance than ever, our God is able to deliver us. All praise, all glory and all honor to Him. We truly do serve an awesome God, praise Jesus Christ our Lord.

    1. eternallyhis says:

      p.s. Maybe I should mention, it was because I had gone directly to God in prayer in search of an answer, which is what caused me to feel so prideful, BECAUSE I thought, “If everyone would go directly to God for answers LIKE I DO :( there wouldn’t be confusion and controversy in the body of Christ and all the churches would teach the same things.”
      Anyhow, I’m sure you can see where the pride was :(

      1. eternallyhis says:

        p.s.s. Sorry to keep posting, but I keep forgetting to mention things, such as I still go directly to God for answers, but instead of feeling proud of myself for doing so, I praise God for leading me to do so, and I pray for others, as well as for my own self that God will correct us in any way we might need in our view of His Word.

        1. hsnpoor says:

          eternallyhis, I keep postit on my computer at work that says “when God gives me discernment about a person, place or thing, it’s my invitation to intercede, not to judge”. Until I read your comments today, it never dawned on me that that “person” who I received discernment about could be my own self. Thank you! Thank you also for the “BEWARE” sign for Satan’s judgement when we find ourselves in a hard, dry place like you described. We rebuke you, Satan, in the Name of Jesus!

  5. nylse says:

    Dr, I think it is in poor taste to use a devotional as a means to blog/share perspective and it is also considered bad etiquette. While I have been blessed by some of the notes, I think you would be best served if you were to start your own blog and share your perspective there.

    1. hsnpoor says:

      nylse,

      Don’t think you’ll get a lot of support for that POV on this site, but you’re certainly welcome to your opinion on the matter.

    2. bubbles says:

      Yes, I agree with you, nylse.

      1. bubbles says:

        I would like to know why my comment is awaiting moderation. What is wrong with asking a question here? Why is it acceptable for some to post very unkind comments and they are not moderated but I am because I asked a question and agreed with one whose thoughts were similar?

        1. Our Daily Bread says:

          Hi, Bubbles–We recently made a change to the commenting process so all comments (not just yours) will await moderation before they go live. Thanks for commenting!

    3. slml says:

      I agree with nylse. A blog for the dr would serve his purposes, and those who want to keep up with it could do that.

      1. hsnpoor says:

        I don’t know about you nylse, bubbles & slml, but the world that I live in teaches our children that they evolved from pond scum, fish & monkeys; that a fetus is a choice not a child, it’s a place where Muslim extremists serve God by beheading and murdering those who do not agree with their religious beliefs. It’s a world where natural disasters seem to be on the increase and all indicators are that the Day of the Lord is fast approaching. I live in the San Francisco Bay area and less than 5% of the population here claim to be Christ believers. My feeling is that, under these circumstances, when you have someone who is willing and quite able to rightly divide the Word of Truth for those who seek it, I could care less about the online “etiquette” of it all. As Paul indicated in Phillipians, some mean it for good & for some from envy,regardless, may Christ be preached! Really and truly who are you people and what are your credentials to dictate where and when God’s word should be disseminated? For all you know, this is a ministry gift that God himself has laid on the heart and mind of this man (I personally believe that is the case). If you don’t enjoy it, my counsel is that you don’t read it. But to assume you have the right to shut it down and off for others who are blessed by it is appalling. To asume that you have the righteousness to judge where he should rightly post his comments is arrogrance beyond this sister’s tolerance.

        May I humbly suggest that each of you acquaint or re-acquaint yourselves with Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 7, especially verses 1-6. I’d share those words here, but my hands are actually trembling with indignant anger.

        BTW, bubbles, did it ever occur to you that EVERYONE’S comments are moderated and no one at this site has actually picked you out to censure?

  6. cemeny says:

    During a recent missions trip, we stopped in a remote village to visit a new church plant. When we arrived, the leaders sat us down and washed our feet. It was an extremely humbling experience and one I will never forget. As we follow the command in Acts 1:8 and witness throughout the world, we must remember to humbly serve with action in addition to speaking or teaching the word. Isaiah 52:7 says “How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!”

  7. slml says:

    My Dad grew up in the Primitive Baptist Church where they practiced “foot washing”. As a child, hearing about that, I had questions as to why. Not until I learned that Jesus did this to show humility, did I understand. I wonder sometimes, if we shouldn’t get back to that sort of thing once in a while.

  8. poohpity says:

    Pride seems to be the hardest to recognize and hardest to overcome. It gives answers before the questions are even asked, it elevates and boasts in itself, it speaks but rarely listens, it wants to be the teacher but refuses to be taught, it leads without learning what it is to follow, it gives advice without being asked, it is controlling/domineering/authoritarian, it says I can do it myself/my way and do not need help, it is the enemy of faith.

    Humility points to the Lord for answers to the questions, it recognizes the source of all spiritual blessing, it listens, it learns, it follows, it receives, it gives without recognition, it considers others needs before it’s own and never feels anything is beneath it to do in service to others, it allows God to be the cure while offering care, it is the basis of faith.

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