Humility – Who Qualifies?

We are not talking about the book, mythological or actual, “Humility and How I attained it.”

It is not something that I have arrived at and now “I will instruct you,” but I am on a journey.

Rather than arrive, I embrace the idea and the reason for humility.

Humility is not; walking around with our heads hanging down having an Eeyore kind of attitude, “It really doesn’t matter anyway.” It’s not about being poor; it’s not about being the last or least although when confronted, with these things, it will show up.

Humility is not about discrediting yourself or your abilities. It is not about pretending or being glum. It’s not about a comparison with anyone (human) else.

I believe that humility is a wide-eyed, open understanding of who you are in light of who Christ is. All my learning, understanding, wisdom, and talents are laid open before God. Then I see him in all of his glory, or all the glory I can perceive and the result is humility.

If I compare myself with you I might even get to look good, (usually in my own eyes) but when I compare myself with Christ, I am at best, a work in progress.

Jesus, the only one qualified to have a reputation, took none. We, who are unqualified, try to get a reputation.

Jesus humbled himself. (Philippians 2). We who are unqualified should have the same mindset and do the same.

Let’s Talk

You Don’t Have To Live; You Get To!


Take a moment, consider.

Imagine for a moment that God actually will hear your request and grant your answer.

I think that more often than not we think exactly opposite. We tend to make a story up in our minds as to why he will not. We base it on performance modules like worth and mile-markers. We raise an impossible standard in our mind story, and it is usually just a little beyond our reach of stellar performance.

So when we come to God in prayer or request, we do not have the confidence that we will see success. We tell ourselves that he will take care of everybody else but will forget about us. Frankly we concede, ‘We don’t measure up.’ That might be true, but its role and strength are out of context.

The truth is we don’t measure up, but we were never supposed to. In the right context this thought propels us toward God but in this previous context, it steals our confidence before Him.

We don’t have confidence because somewhere our heart guard has been compromised. Either it is by something that we have allowed or something that has happened to us that has penetrated and hurt us.

We forgot the practical command, “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” (Proverbs 4:23, NIV)

So how do you get your confidence back?

Start by recognizing that you somehow dropped your heart guard.

Confess this to God through prayer. Get that straight; get your inside world back in order. Remember we have a promise that if we confess he forgives and cleanses. The confession is for our awareness. He already knows all; it’s not new to him. Confessing helps us realign our private world. We openly let ourselves know that he knows.

Confidence is all about transparency knowing that there are no secrets, hidden agendas or manipulative tactics at play. There are no shadows or pockets of darkness lurking and planting fear. “Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God…” (1 John 3:21, NIV)

Come back into confidence. You have a God who loves you and wants that kind of relationship with you.

Just like in a great father-child relationship, I wouldn’t hesitate to jump up into my father’s lap, so that is what it looks like to come before God with confidence.

“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.” (1 John 5:14-15, NIV)

There is a lap of acceptance waiting for you.

Go ahead and jump!

Let’s Talk

You Don’t Have To Live; You Get To!

Religiously Lost

Oh my ‘I’s’ were dotted and my ‘T’s’ were crossed, and I was doing everything right according to my religious protocol, but, I was missing the critical focus or component.

This focus wasn’t a thing or a ritual; this component was a person. I was missing (not getting) Him.

Until he had a private conversation with me and nudged me in my thoughts with the question, I was willingly unaware of my lack.

“Phil do you like me?”

I responded to my thoughts, ” I love you, Lord.” My mind went to my life that I built around church and service. I showed up with unbridled devotion, most of the time. I led congregations in worship, and I had spent hours in preparation for teaching and imparting God’s Word.

He nudged again, “That’s not what I asked. Do you like me?”

That question changed my life. I was religiously numb and conveniently occupied. I had to answer honestly, and my honesty bothered me.

God, who came to earth to bring people to himself, was good, but I was extremely uncomfortable with a Christ who spent time with untouchables, who went into places and situations where a ‘good religious person’ shouldn’t go. He did things that had I been present, I would have blushed at or hidden from, my religion wouldn’t approve.

He lived at his pace, not swayed by anyone or anything. Ya, I didn’t like the way he rolled. He wouldn’t get into my religious box. Shame.

Great questions change lives.

This issue changed my life. Maybe it will change yours.

“Hey there nice religious person, do you like me?”

Let’s Talk

You Don’t Have to Live; You Get To!

Those That ‘Have to Say,’ Aren’t (re-print from Blue Collar Theology)

Those that Have to Say, Aren’t.

Over my life, I have had the opportunity on a few occasions to know some very wealthy people. These people probably were able to travel every day to Texas and back to get their Starbucks, and not even feel it in their bank accounts.

During my time with them it didn’t stand out, but later while observing and conversing with others all of a sudden it reminded me of something that was missing with these wealthy friends.

It showed up as people who didn’t have that kind of wealth but wanted me to think that they did. They would constantly drop hints about how much they were making and how often they were spending and where their illustrious buys were landing them.

The extremely wealthy didn’t do that.


Because, they didn’t have to. The difference was that they had the money and goods. They didn’t need to concern themselves that I would know that. It didn’t matter, and they were secure without anyone giving their support.

I developed through this example a little axiom that I use now and cross many lines with it in my thinking.

“Only those who don’t have it have to flaunt it.” I’ve seen it hold true.

How does that play out in the area of spiritual life?

People who connect with God don’t have to let everyone else know that they do. They don’t have to drop hints like “In my prayers at 4:00 am this morning the Lord told me…” “God told me this, God told me that…” you get the picture. They aren’t just explaining, they are posturing and flaunting.

People who are connected with God and walk in the Spirit indeed do it. They don’t have to posture, they don’t have to prove it, they just do it. They are who they are, authentic and true. They know God and radiate him through their life.

So how about you? Do you just have to say, or, are you?