A Paradox

Proverbs 29:23 A man’s pride will bring him low, But a humble spirit will obtain honor.

The Bible is filled with many paradoxes.  A paradox is two things which seem to contradict each other but are true.  This verse says that if we want honor and exaltation for ourselves, we must be humble.  And if we try to exalt ourselves we will end up humbled.  We must choose to be low and then we will be lifted high.  This seems to be counter intuitive.  This statement is like saying if you want to go to the right you must go the left and if you try to go to the right you will end up going to the left.  Got that?

Let us take a closer look at it and see if we can make some sense out of it.  We have talked a lot about how God wants us to be humble.  When we are humble, God can more easily shape and conform us to His image.  When we are proud, it is harder to do.  Think about playing with dough.   When the dough is soft you can easily reshape it.  When it dries up and hardens it is not easy to shape.  In fact, it is easily breakable and not easy to repair it.  When we are full of pride, sometimes we are broken as God tries to reshape us.  We are brought low and a lot of times we are unusable.  God by His grace, can fix us, but this requires a lot of work.  When we are humble, God can more quickly shape us to be people who bring Him glory and honor and in doing so we get some for ourselves as well.

Dear God, help me to humble, so that You can conform me to Your image.  Help me to not be hard and prideful in my ways.  Forgive me for the times that I am.  Thank you for Your grace and patience in those times.  Thank you for wanting to shape me and use me.  Amen.


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