Proverbs 22:4 (AMP) The reward of humility [that is, having a realistic view of one’s importance] and the [reverent, worshipful] fear of the Lord is riches, honor, and life.
“The enemy is subtle and warps truth into lies for us. He tells us we are being humble, responsible, and selfless, while we are killing the things God put us on the planet to do, the things that would build His Kingdom” Jennie Allen – Restless
The fear of greatness is not humility it is a fear produced by the enemy to immobilize God’s People. It is the voice that tells us not to use our gifts, talents and abilities to step off the boat in faith and walk on the water of trust with Jesus. People are created by God on purpose. The Word of God is clear. God has a plan. It is a good one. It contains a future filled with hope. (Jeremiah 29:11) The psalmist reveals that God predesigned every single day of our life recording each moment before our arrival. (Psalm 139:16) He filled us with every spiritual blessing and waits for it be manifested in our life. (Ephesians 1:3) It is our gift to prosper as our soul prospers.
When I was 19 years old, I applied to be the director of the preschool where I had worked throughout high school. The regional director came to conduct the final interview. All agreed I was the person who should take the position. The meeting was more a formality than anything else. As we cordially sat chatting about the future of the preschool and my new position, she stopped abruptly and asked, “How old are you?” I told her my age and she immediately sank in her chair sighing. I cannot hire you for this position. You are too young. I was devastated. I had a vision for the job. I knew what needed to be done to improve the place. I was ready. I couldn’t take the position because I was not 21 years of age. It was a humbling experience.
In my younger years, I was confident in my leadership skills. Maybe too confident, but I was a born leader. Over the years, I have learned to hide this ability or at least keep it muted. When I left my previous position as the Student Services Coordinator of the local technical college, I was ready to give up on being in charge. The weight and responsibility of my position were just too much. This was after our son’s battle with cancer and many life changes. I was tired. I was broken. I was done. When I took my current position, I told my new employer I wanted to be a “peon”. I wanted to come do my best for him each day and be good at my job but did not want any leadership responsibilities whatsoever. He was okay with that though looking for someone to take over his business in retirement. It has been a wonderful place to work. But somehow, without warning, you guessed it. I am in a leadership role again. Not my plan or my desire, but the inner working of God in me rising up to meet the challenge. Just an hour ago, I would not have been so bold. That is until I realized that the enemy was at work in this thing called false humility.
False humility is a dangerous ploy of the enemy that keeps many people with gifting and calling to serve God boldly hidden in the back row of pews, office chairs and carpool lines telling themselves to not give in to the need for prideful arrogance. You know what you are good at because God made you that way. Our heart is a fickle and deceitful thing. Our motives must be refined through the water of His Word and fires of testing but when God made you to do it – the drive and desire will survive these things and continue to create pressure inside of you.
According to the good old dictionary, the world defines humility as follows: the quality of being humble; of modest opinion or estimate of one’s importance. Humble as not proud or arrogant; feeling insignificant; low importance; and courteously respectful. God defines humility as gentleness, help and meekness. There is a big difference. What the enemy calls low importance and insignificant – God calls it a help! He wants you to do something with a humble heart. But you must do something…
The reward of humility coupled with deep reverent worship of the Lord is riches, success and long life. The enemy wants us to sit under the weight of false humility and be broke, failures and die in our self-doubt. False humility will become our excuse and comfortable pallet to sit by the waters of change, opportunities of ministry and ability to walk out the calling of our life. It is crippling. It is based on man’s perception directly related to acceptance, affirmation and approval. It makes people uncomfortable so they squelch it with negativity and criticism. The cunning craftiness of the great liar to stifle the plan and purpose of God rising within us to display the Glory and Greatness of God to all mankind.
James 3:13 (AMP) Who among you is wise and intelligent? Let him by his good conduct show his [good] deeds with the gentleness and humility of true wisdom.
God gives us wisdom which is His Word. He has filled us with His Spirit to provide the intellect to use His Word and work our gifts. Why aren’t we doing it? Because fear kills confidence that would otherwise be moved by faith. Doubt suffocates boldness in the lie that it is our arrogance rather than our calling. To be so bold as to think that God created us for more than our current mundane and ordinary existence is to insist I am better than someone else which is simply not true. We were all created to reflect the Greatness of God and manifest His Glory on the earth. It is our purpose. It is His Plan. It is our calling. We were made for this.
Ephesians 1:18-20 (AMP) And [I pray] that the eyes of your heart [the very center and core of your being] may be enlightened [flooded with light by the Holy Spirit], so that you will know and cherish the hope [the divine guarantee, the confident expectation] to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints (God’s people), and [so that you will begin to know] what the immeasurable and unlimited and surpassing greatness of His [active, spiritual] power is in us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of His mighty strength which He produced in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places…
There is not enough time to detail the list of job opportunities the Lord has put in my path that before taking the position – I had no experience whatsoever. I have been promoted to do things that I never even knew I could do but prayed and knew God wanted me to do it. My current position is no different. I am a typist. Transcriptionist by trade. I had no clue about insurance. God has given me the understanding and wisdom not only to do the job but do it well. It’s all God. Not me. I just show up. Kind of like this blog, I started showing up ten years ago and just let God do the rest. However, I have recently bowed to the god of false humility in other areas of my life especially ministry. I share this with you today because I believe someone reading this may completely understand. You tried to use your gifts and abilities but they were not well received so you took your place on the back row giving up the forefront. God didn’t tell you to be humble, sit still and do nothing. The enemy did. He called it humility but in fact humility according to God’s Plan – helps. It does something. It does everything for the Glory of God and His Greatness. The enemy doesn’t want that to happen because if you tried and succeeded it would be a revival in your current place that might spread to farther regions.
Psalm 135:5 (NLT) I know the greatness of the Lord—that our Lord is greater than any other god.
Ambition is complicated. It requires a constant gut check, heart examination, and filtering of our motives. If your deepest desire is to serve the Lord for His Glory, then do it. Stop questioning and do it. The enemy wants to stop you because fear is telling you that you are being arrogant. If you are good at something, it is for the Glory of God. Your mission is to reflect the greatness of God wherever you are. Not as a martyr, but master of all things. Like Joseph, who served the Lord faithfully whether in the pit, prison or palace – He lived for the Glory of God. You can do the same. Break off the chains of false humility. Release the gift within you for His Glory and to proclaim the Greatness of His Name. Do not be ashamed. Jennie Allen writes “we need to quit apologizing for our gifts and start apologizing for not using them. I could not agree more.
I Chronicles 29:11 (NLT) Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty. Everything in the heavens and on earth is yours, O Lord, and this is your kingdom. We adore you as the one who is over all things.