In HOPE 10.14

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David Timms


Reading Suggestion

Want a great read for the summer that will nourish your soul? Something that doesn't require a PhD nor 100 hours? Pick up Andrew Murray's classic Humility: The Journey Toward Holiness (Bethany House). It may just change the way you think of humility ... and the way that you live.

Prayer for Today

Father, dare I ask to be humble or humbled? Yet my heart's desire is to grow more like Christ. So, root out the pride that thwarts your work in me and through me. Remove the hubris that distracts me from seeking Your glory. And may You be my all today in a way that You were not yesterday. Amen.




“Should you ask me: What is the first thing in religion? I should reply:
the first, second, and third thing therein is humility."
– Augustine, 4th-5th century


"I am amazed at how little humility is seen as the distinguishing feature of discipleship." (Andrew Murray: 12)

Most of us think of humility as just another virtue -- much like patience, goodness, or kindness. It's nice and we appreciate it when we see it, but we rarely discuss it and almost never pursue it. Yet, the Bible seems to indicate that humility may be the bedrock of discipleship.

Jesus humbled himself by becoming a man and submitting even to death. (Phil 2:5-8) He called His disciples to "deny yourself ... take up your cross ... be last of all ... be slave of all." (Mk 8-10)

James reminds us that "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble." (Js 4:6)

It's an old biblical theme that generates little attention, especially in a culture devoted to achievement, recognition, status, and significance. But if pride is the root of our fallenness (1 Jn 2:16) then humility paves the way to our restoration.

Andrew Murray goes so far as to say: "Humility is the only soil in which virtue takes root; a lack of humility is the explanation of every defect and failure. Humility is not so much a virtue along with the others, but is the root of all." (Murray: 17)

Marriages fail not when love grows cold but when pride trumps humility. Churches experience conflict not when unity is forgotten but when humility is lost. We grow least content not when circumstances are tough but when entitlement buries humility.

Of course, our definition of humility makes all the difference. It's not about self-loathing or dejected defeat. Rather, "true humility comes when before God we see ourselves as nothing, have put aside self, and let God be all." (Murray: 55)

Let God be all. Sounds simple enough, but the striving and fruitlessness of our lives suggests that we find it easier to let God be some.

The challenge of our day, as followers of Jesus, is not to rise to the top but to live faithfully among the least, because of who He is. It'll change everything; our homes, our families, our churches, and our workplaces.





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I'm always happy to explore these issues further.

You can find back issues of "In HOPE" (2005-2010) at .

David Timms serves in the Graduate Ministry Department at Hope International University in Fullerton, California. "In HOPE", however, is not an official publication of the University and the views expressed are not necessarily those of the Administrators or Board. "In HOPE" has been a regular e-publication since January, 2001.