God promises to bring blessing on a land when His people humble themselves.
“If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and forgive their sin and heal their land.” 2Chronicles 7:14
The Bible also explains that God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble.
“Though He scoffs at the scoffers, Yet He gives grace to the afflicted.” Proverbs 3:34
“Though the Lord is on high, He attends to the lowly; but the proud He knows from afar.” Psalm 138:6
The Apostle James tells us that humility causes God to pour more of His grace on us.
“God gives more grace. That’s why it says, God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6
We also have a direct command to humble ourselves.
“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, so he will exalt you in due time” 1Peter 5:6
Humility is not something we are born with, such as a meek and mild personality, but a deliberate frame of mind and course of life that we choose one moment at a time. Humility is a command so it has to be an act of the will, not a general quality of our personality.
As we practice humility, it appears to be our natural personality, since it is our way of life. However, don’t ignore your call to humility by assuming you are just not built that way. If you are one of those bombastic, gruff, arrogant or assertive types, or anything like that, realise you are equally called to humility as everyone else. God’s attitude toward your heart is on the same terms as His connection with everyone else.
So, what does it mean to be humble? If God’s people are to humble themselves and pray, what would that look like?
Firstly they would not be arrogantly relying on what seems right to themselves. They would be attentive to God and what concerns God, not what suits them. They would put aside the distractions and obsessions of their life and wait on God.
Waiting on God is a significant issue in the Bible.
“Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he will strengthen your heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.” Psalm 27:14
“But they that wait on the Lord will renew their strength; they will mount up with wings as eagles; they will run, and not be weary; and they will walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31
Humility is reflected by the place we give to God in our world. If He is important then we will always find time for Him and to wait on Him for instructions and provision.
When God called His people to humble themselves and pray we see that they were to find time for God, including for prayer. Instead of being buried in business or in the machinations of their day they had to put themselves under God, giving God priority.
What evidence is there in your day that God has priority? Where would someone see you relying on God? Would they see you humbly relying on the blessing of Almighty God, or getting about your own business your way, as it suits you.
I encourage you to humble yourself. If won’t do it you may find God doing it for you.
If God were to pull the rug out from under you (so to speak) you might find time to pray and wait on God. What would happen to all those important things that eat up your time if you were too sick to get out of bed? If you were imprisoned, locked in by a storm, without transport, invaded by demanding relatives, suddenly cash strapped, rushed to hospital or under house arrest, then all those other things you want to do would have to be abandoned.
So, why can’t they be abandoned now, so you can wait on God? Why can’t you find time to humble yourself and sit at the Lord’s feet, waiting on Him to direct your steps and bless your day?
If you are really under duress then call out to God to deliver you so you can wait on Him, not so you can get about your own interests.
However you do it, please take note that you are called by God Almighty to ‘Humble Yourself’.