Humility is a powerful tool for influence when it emanates from the life of a leader. Jesus was the perfect model for a leader who consistently demonstrated humility in a variety of situations.
Here’s some examples of Jesus’ choosing to humble Himself…
- He became a man and took the form of a servant – Philippians 2:5-11
- He submitted Himself to baptism by John the Baptist – Matthew 3:13-16
- He paid the temple tax even though a Son of the King – Matthew 17:24-27
- He submitted to the Father’s will for the cross – Mark 14:32-36
Humility is attractive when it’s genuine. We can sense it in others when it is not genuine. We can also pick up very quickly when someone is proud or simply pretending to be humble.
As the Lord will not share His glory with another (Isaiah 42:8), leaders who do not lead with humility, but rather take credit themselves for their accomplishments, are in for a rude awakening. The proud who don’t demonstrate humility are in for a tough lesson when the Lord finally runs out of patience and acts to humble them (see 1 Peter 5:5).
Nebuchadnezzar was one such leader who learned the lesson of humility through having God humble him. After a long, painful process, he summarizes his journey with this pointed statement: “Now I, Nebuchadnezzar, praise and exalt and glorify the King of heaven, because everything he does is right and all his ways are just. And those who walk in pride he is able to humble.” (Daniel 4:28-37)
We have this choice – to humble ourselves or to wait and have the Lord humble us. Could I suggest that the former is preferable, for when God acts to humble the proud, it will be a very thorough, life-altering lesson.
What will you choose?