"Humility is to make a right estimate of oneself." Charles H. Spurgeon
And if we know who God is and consequently who we are, then there is just once piece left to fit into our understanding of humility...who are they?
The people around us, who we interact with everyday, who are they?
This is where humility gets messy.
Because this is where our pride gets affronted the most. We can have a theoretical understanding of who God is and who we are and yet still not walk in humility. In our relationships with others, our understanding of who God is and who we are is most easily seen.
Our humility or our pride will be displayed through our interactions with other people.
If we truly understand who God is and consequently who we are, then we have no reason for pride. For we will understand that God has created all of us equal and that through sin we are all broken and in desperate need of Him. And even more than that, we are all completely loved by God and He desires good for all people.
I think it is expressed by by C.S. Lewis when he says...
"He (God) wants each man, in the long run, to be able to recognize all creatures (even himself) as glorious and excellent things. He wants to kill their animal self-love as soon as possible; but it is His long-term policy...to restore to them a new kind of self-love—a charity and gratitude for all selves, including their own; when they have really learned to love their neighbors as themselves, they will be allowed to love themselves as their neighbors."
We cannot rightly understand God and still look down on those around us. We cannot rightly understand ourselves and still be prideful. Because if we rightly understand who God is and who we are then we will understand that every human is in the same position as we are...loved by God and dependent on Him.
“Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God,”
2 Corinthians 3:5
We have no reason for pride, but we have every reason to rejoice in the wonder and care with which we were created. We are created in God's image.
Our lives have eternal value and purpose.
We are gifted with characteristics and talents from God to be used for God.
We have every reason to rejoice in the unique ways that God has made and gifted us, and to equally rejoice in the ways He has made and gifted those around us. This is humility.
And this is hard.
Everything in our world today is shouting at us to stand out, to be better than everyone else, to be special, to be valuable. But the truth is we are already valuable to God. We already have immeasurable value. And in Him we have the freedom to walk confidently and humbly in the calling and purpose He has given us at the same time rejoicing as others walk in their's.
This is the hard part of humility.