I have written before about the power of a good example.  Those of us who are the spiritual children of God, saved by Jesus, should aspire to be good examples to those around us, and we can do this by following the best example set for us, the life of Jesus.  But such character as Jesus had can only be duplicated in our lives if we spend time daily with God so that he can teach us and place more and more of His Spirit within us through the process of sanctification which lasts our entire life.  We can also build His Spirit and character within us by doing the works of service to those around us.  Doing this also gives Him the opportunity to put more of His Spirit in us as we submit to His Way and humble ourselves, putting others above and before us and making our own needs and desires come second.  It is this attitude of humility that is key to the working out of God’s training in us.  We absolutely must have an attitude of humility in order for God’s work to be successful in us.  But Jesus also set the example of the humble mindset and showed by His living out that mindset of humility that it is entirely possible to live that way.

Philippians 2:5-11 explains this mindset which Jesus had.  This passage explains how Jesus knew He was God in human form and knew He had all the power of God.  We know from other passages of the Bible,  as proven by Jesus’ many miracles, that He had power which only God could possess, being able to forgive sin, being able to bring people back from death, being able to transform matter and produce something out of nothing (the miracle of the water into wine and the miracle of the loaves and fishes that fed the 5,000), being able to heal sickness and infirmity, walking on water, and many other incredible powers.   Yet, despite having all this power, He never acted arrogantly nor did he demand that people treat Him special, giving Him special privileges wherever He went.  No, instead, He chose to be very humble, to live humbly and simply, without pride, even though He knew He was God.  It is this  humble mindset spoken of in Philippians 2:5-11 which Jesus exemplified through His life and which we should follow in all our actions. 

This was one of the hardest lessons for me to learn as I’m sure that it is for every human being.  We all tend towards pride.  The humble mindset is against our original sin nature, but it can still be achieved through God’s power as we spend time with Him, as we study and meditate on His Word, and as we work out His ways in our life.  As a young man, I did not initially have this mindset.  Like most people, I craved the limelight, wanting the approval, affirmation, and recognition of other people.  I wanted all the awards and accolades I could achieve.  But as God trained me out of that mindset through His sanctification training program, and gave me more and more the mindset of Christ from the passage in Philippians mentioned above, I became more useful to Him and to other people.  Once I learned to diminish myself and allow others to have the spotlight instead of me, I also became a more effective military leader with my people being happier since I allowed them to shine, instead of me.

Harry S. Truman is reported to have said, “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.”  This is absolutely true, and I have seen it manifest in my life as I have been able to accomplish much more personally and as a military leader when I did not care who got the credit.  This is the mindset of humility, the mindset of Christ, and it is the best attitude to have in life if you want to be successful and for everyone around you to be successful as well.

I pray that God will develop in you the humble mindset of Christ in all the things that you do, and that you would learn not to seek the emptiness of glory, but rather that you would seek greater treasures in heaven and even on this earth by letting others shine instead of glorifying yourself. 

 


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    I'm a retired soldier, having spent 23 years of my life serving our country, actually 30 years when you count the reserve and National Guard time as well.  I believe in servant leaders, following the example of our Lord, and I believe in giving back to the troops once one has attained a certain status or level of success in life.  But I also believe in fighting back against corruption and incompetence wherever you find it if it hurts people.  Our national values were worth dying for.  They are also worth living for.  A man or woman can actually live a life by these principles of humility, service, love, duty, and honor, and have a significant impact on the world around them...if you have the dedication to see it through. 

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