by: FCC Staff
Last Be First
“A man’s pride brings him low, but a man of lowly spirit gains honor.” Proverbs 29:23
If you look at our universe, from the largest planet to the smallest molecules that make up our physical world, you can see that God is orderly. His creation and the rules that govern it are logical. And yet, there are a handful of passages in Scripture that seem very illogical. For instance, today’s Proverb: “A man’s pride brings him low, but a man of lowly spirit gains honor.”
Historically speaking, some of our planet’s most powerful people were fueled by pride – launching them into the upper echelons of influence and prestige. You can easily Google past kings, queens, and presidents who believed that they were great enough to attain those stations, and so they did. It would seem that pride in oneself does indeed lead to honor, but that’s not how Jesus sees it.
In Matthew 20, Jesus tells a parable traditionally called the “Laborers in the Vineyard.” He uses parables like this one to describe the kingdom of heaven in terms that people can more easily understand. In this particular parable, He makes the point that participation in the kingdom is not dependent upon one’s own merit, but by the grace of God. He ends the parable with this iconic statement, “So the last will be first, and the first last,” (Matthew 20:16). In both Jesus’ statement and Solomon’s proverb, neither of them is primarily talking about power and prestige on this side of eternity. Their concern is for things eternal.
Eternity matters. I’m sure you’ve heard that statement somewhere before. We follow Jesus because eternity matters. We accept God’s grace because eternity matters. We treat others as better than ourselves because eternity matters. Humility now will pay eternal dividends, both in our life and in the lives of those around us.
Let us move through our day to day in full awareness that eternity matters. Let us make relational decisions that lift others up, even at the cost of our own power and prestige. Let us emulate Christ in that way.
Prayer for today: Thank you Lord for trusting us with the incredible responsibility of sharing your good news. Help us to live humbly so as to point people to your grace-filled hope of eternity. Continue to bless us with opportunities to set aside ourselves for the kingdom. We love you. Amen.