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Core 52 - Chapter 49 - Humility

If you’ve ever visited a water park, you can easily picture the absolute joy they can bring. From a relaxing float down the lazy river, to the stomach dropping thrills of a water slide, there is nothing quite like it. When my kids were little we spent a lot of time in the splash pad. One of their absolute favorite things to do was to stand under the giant bucket that would slowly fill with water. They never knew the exact moment when it would fill up enough to tip over and drench them, but they knew it was coming if they waited long enough. When I was reading this week’s passage of Philippians 2:5-7, I was instantly reminded of that bucket, and my own struggle with pride.

Verse 7 describes how Jesus had to “empty himself” when he came to earth. As the son of the King, He was deserving of all power and glory, yet he was willing to trade a mansion for a manger and robes for rags. He was the very embodiment of a humble servant. What this means is that He chose to minister from the bottom. Day after day he lived out the attitude that one life was not more deserving of salvation than another, and that there was no job too beneath him. He ministered to the sinners, He set aside time to teach the children, and even washed dirty feet (with his own hands!).

Unfortunately we’re not Jesus. We’re not even close. The truth is, we are selfish people, and we like having our pride buckets filled to the brim. We want the accolades and the power that comes with being number one. Life may seem pretty great at the top, but time and again history has proved to us that what comes up, must come down. It is impossible to keep that position forever. Proverbs 16:18 warns us that pride can and will destroy. As surely as the bucket at the water park will topple over, “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.” The good news though is that we have the ability to flip our own bucket. We don’t have to wait around for our own destruction. All it takes is a little upside down thinking. It could be as simple as letting someone check out in front of you at the store, or as big as volunteering on a ministry team that stretches the walls of your comfort zone. How will you choose to check your buckets this week?

- Serena Maerkl