Humility is a curious thing. I’m not sure if you can master it. And if you have, it would be ironic to say so. But one thing I’ve learned is that there is a difference between humility and servanthood.
I’ve never had much of an issue serving others. I do well putting others first. But over the past few years as I’ve become secure in my identity in Christ, I realize that servanthood and humility are two different things.
Someone who serves is not necessarily humble but someone who is humble always serves.
Humility is a position, not an action. Humility is a position of dependence on someone greater than yourself. This then directs the motivation for all service.
Many times throughout my life I’ve served others for various reasons:
- I thought others were better (i.e. more valuable) than me.
- I thought others were more worthy of being served.
- I felt obligated.
- I wanted to receive approval for serving.
- I wanted to appear humble.
None of these actions were rooted in humility. They were rooted in insecurity and ultimately focused on myself more than others.
On the other hand, humility doesn’t focus on self at all. Humility is always focused on others; for the sake of others and not your own. Humility doesn’t look to others for any of the reasons I listed above. Humility is fully dependent on God as the Source of our identity.
Just because I serve others, doesn’t necessarily mean I am humble. But when I position myself correctly, serving others becomes a joyful overflow of what I have already received in Christ.
How do you view humility?