Sometimes life is really hard. I mean really hard. The difficulty may come in the form of a loved one’s death (recently two individuals associated with our church died very unexpectedly), the loss of a relationship (divorce, wayward children, or dating that comes to an end are all examples), the inability to fulfill a dream (some are longing for a spouse or to have a biological child), or a concern for one’s own physical safety.
One possible response is to believe that you just have to deal with it yourself. You need to be strong. You need to fight. You need to tell the world that you are good. You need to pick yourself up.
I would like to suggest that the Bible speaks to these difficult moments of life by asking us to be humble.
1 Peter 5:6-7 says “Therefore, humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on him, because He cares for you.
From this short section of the Bible we can see a few of the unexpected blessings of humility.
Blessing #1: Exaltation comes at the proper time
Instead of trying to tell others how wonderful we are, how we have been wronged by others, and how we deserve more respect and appreciation, God tells us that he does the exalting at the right time.
Some of us are not very patient. It may be that the Lord will allow us to go through the crucible of difficulty in order to help us understand that exaltation comes from Him. It does not occur when we think we deserve it or have earned it. It comes when He decides.
This make the exaltation, when it comes, particularly wonderful. It causes us to give thanks and appreciate all that the Lord does in our lives because we know that the blessing came from Him.
Dear friends, please do not fight for your space. Please do not try to tell others how wonderful you are and how people just do not see the real you. God opposes the proud, but he gives grace to the humble. When one is humble then one is exalted at the right time.
Blessing #2: You unload your burdens
Anxiety is like a weight. It impacts you emotionally, spiritually, and sometimes physically. It makes the life you have even harder. You not only face the difficulties, but when you in pride try to deal with it yourself, you receive no relief.
Sometimes we cannot avoid having a heavy load at different times in our life. That does not mean we have to carry it by ourselves. When we try, we make it even more challenging.
The Lord says that he is willing to take those burdens. He is willing to help you in the midst of those difficulties.
Blessing #3: You know that he cares
The text tells us that you can give your anxiety to him because he cares for you. It is one way you express humility before the Lord. One of the blessings you experience is his faithfulness to that promise. Those who are proud do not experience this blessing. They are too busy trying to figure out how they can bear their burden on their own and then accuse people and God of not caring.
God made it clear from the beginning – either choose the path of humility and experience the blessings associated with humility or experience the full weight of the difficulties on your own. In fact, a refusal to be humble means that God opposes that person. The weight is even heavier.
First, I encourage you to read 1 Peter 5:6-7 over and over until you can articulate the truth in this passage.
Second, I encourage you to make a list of the things that most trouble you at this point. What are your greatest anxieties?
Third, I encourage you to pray for each of those items on your list everyday for 3 weeks. In your prayer communicate clearly to the Lord that you do not have the ability to solve these issues and you are asking for God’s grace to endure and his wisdom to know how to respond to each challenge.