Humble Power

If I had one super-skill, it would be the ability to learn any language easily. As an American, learning another language isn’t expected (or all that necessary if we’re honest), so I admire those who learn three or four languages or more.

Recently, I had the opportunity to hear a Christian from another country. Because of his broken English, he had brought an interpreter to speak for him. She stood with eyes downcast, not wanting to draw attention away from him as he gave his remarkable testimony.

When she spoke, however, she spoke with power and emotion as she related the man’s story. The difference in attitude to speech struck me because I had not expected it. The message was his, only the voice was hers.

Then Moses said to the Lord, “O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither before nor since You have spoken to Your servant; but I am slow of speech and slow of tongue.”

11 So the Lord said to him, “Who has made man’s mouth? Or who makes the mute, the deaf, the seeing, or the blind? Have not I, the Lord12 Now therefore, go, and I will be with your mouth and teach you what you shall say.” — Exodus 4:10-11

How much like that woman interpreter we should be! Humility is one of the most difficult virtues for me to practice, yet it should characterize my life. Humility is not self-abasement, but a proper perspective of who I am in relation to others and to the Lord. I am not the Lord’s manager. I am merely His messenger.

Nor am I a messenger that is indispensable. Unlike the interpreter who was needed, I am not necessary to God’s plan. (Gasp! Seriously though, thank goodness!) God uses His children because He delights in blessing our obedience and wants us to be part of His great work. His Word and work would not cease if we decided not to obey. God is not dependent on us.

Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for

“God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble.”

 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time. — I Peter 5:5-6 

So our attitude is one of humbleness, but also of confidence. We don’t “speak truth to power,” we are speaking the truth with power.

We have the greatest message in the world. The Good News — that life comes from death, and sinful humanity can be reconciled to God. There is nothing that is mightier than that.

But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.Acts 1:8
To the ends of the earth…
I guess it’s time I started learning those languages.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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