God’s greatest gift to mankind is not me? Who knew….

World-Around-MeI have spent a lot of time lately transferring old 8mm home video into digital format.  This cannot be done quickly with the software I have so  you are almost forced to watch all of your old films.  I have seen videos of our wedding, a mission trip to the Philippines, military training from many moons ago, tons of video of our first child, and a couple of videos of houses we used to live in.  With each of those videos I caught a further glimpse into myself for two reasons: 1) I typically was the one doing the recording, 2) I was able to see me in various settings when I was not recording – Christmas at my in-laws, military training, singing at church, interacting with my daughter.

I couldn’t put my finger on it at first but the more I saw of myself the less I liked myself.  I was confident.  Always appearing to have an answer.  And then I started noticing what the problem was and still is.  I am not humble.  More so then than now – and not because I am more humble now, but rather I am less confident now.  I am not God’s greatest gift to mankind.  I am not God’s greatest gift to my spouse.  I am not God’s greatest gift to my children, my family, my friends, my church, my enemies.  I am nobody in the grand scheme of life.  I have a small sphere of influence, but each person is the master of their domain.  I looked up some verses that I think will do me well to remember and I will pass them on to you.

“The fear of the LORD is wisdom’s instruction, and humility comes before honor.” Proverbs 15:33

“He has told you men what is good and what it is the LORD requires of you: Only to act justly, to love faithfulness, and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8

“Do nothing out of rivalry or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves.” Philippians 2:33

“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, so that He may exalt you in due time,…” 1 Peter 5:6

“All of you, take up My yoke and learn from Me, because I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for yourselves.” -Jesus in Matthew 11:29

Example: Moses – Numbers 12:3

Encouragement for being humble:

“The greatest among you will be your servant. Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted.” Matthew 23:11-12

“Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will exalt you.” James 4:10

I am not entirely sure how to apply this in the multiple areas of my life.  Is it a disregard for myself across the board?  Is it a denial of “Me Time”?  Is it meeting the needs of others even if what they desire from me is something I cannot meet?  God is our fulfillment that can satisfy.  I cannot fill those needs and longings in others – my wife, my children, my coworkers.  Maybe it is me pointing to God when people are trying to find their fulfillment in me and I in myself?

The interesting part is that some people in the videos are obviously not as enthralled with me as I was with myself.  But they never laid the smack down on me.  What if they had?  Would I have received it?  Would I receive it now?  Try it and let’s find out how I handle it.

Keith

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5 thoughts on “God’s greatest gift to mankind is not me? Who knew….

  1. He comes the smack down! Ha! Leave it to your sister to bring it. 😉

    Seriously though, I think we all get a little “involved” with ourselves. We see life from our own perspective and sometimes it’s easy to forget that we aren’t always right, or know best. The best we can do is realize that we aren’t God and remember just how human we are. I do think you’re on the right track by redirecting those who try to find their fulfillment in you to Christ. That’s a wonderful start.

    And by the way, everyone needs “me time.” I enjoy my “me time” to communicate with my Lord, reconnect with friends, or dive into a good book. That’s not selfish; that’s how I recharge my batteries.

    Well, that’s my human perspective anyway.

    Love you,
    Sissy

  2. Ma K says:

    I read this a few weeks ago, and was going to reply, and got sidetracked. Just want to insert that introspection is a good thing. I think it is always a good idea to take a look at ourselves and see our faults and ask God to help us change. With that said, I think you are being way too hard on yourself. I love your personality. I love your sense of humor. I love the times you are silly and fun loving. I love it that you are kind to others, and offer to help when you can. I love that you are honest, even to your own detriment. I know there are times you have sold things and not made as much money on a sale as a result of that honesty. No one is perfect, but you are a really, really nice guy, and I see you as a shining example to others.

    Love and Hugs,

    • Keith Wadley says:

      I do those “good” things out of guilt and my concern for looking “righteous” instead of with a pure and undefiled heart. I really am wicked to the core. Ask your daughter. If she is honest she will tell you how self-centered I am. I have always been told that I am too hard on myself, but “The heart is more deceitful than anything else and desperately sick – who can understand it?” Jeremiah 17:9 It was just really obvious in the videos that I did not see the people around me because I was focused on me and how others would see me. Even in the rafting video it was the same thing. The video from the Philippines, from singing at church, being a newbie parent with Constance, the military training video, etc…

      Joe and I were talking last weekend about freedom. Freedom is false concept in the way we teach it in America. Scripture is clear. It is not how free you are, it is whether you are a slave to sin or a slave to righteousness. I think what you are seeing is me trying to be a slave to righteousness while my former self keeps trying to reshackle itself to sin. I might blog on the freedom/slave thing soon.

      Love to you too,

      Keith

      • Ma K says:

        Hey Keith, God has a way of exposing the thoughts and intents of our hearts, and I know in the past I have had to repent many times for doing the right thing, but doing it for the wrong motive (to look good, to please others, etc…). So I really DO understand where you are coming from. God is perfecting you and maturing you and showing you these things so you can be more like Jesus, and that is a very good thing. You are a work in progress, as are we all. Paul talks about this, doesn’t he, when he talks about the good things he wants to do, that he can’t do, etc…??? And yet, look how incredibly God used Him, in spite of his weaknesses. Because you are His, and because you are earnestly seeking Him, He who began a good work in you will be faithful to complete it. He isn’t finished with you yet. And I love that Scripture, because it says HE will complete it!!! There’s a wonderful children’s song that popped into my head just before I started typing that you might want to look up. It’s called “God’s still working on me”, or something like that.

        One more note: even in the midst of the things God is revealing to you, there are still things you have right, that no one can make you do, that are not for show. Things like being a good dad, being honest, respecting your parents and Grandparents and parents in law, being there for your sister when she needs you, helping others (even when you sometimes question your motives, you still do it), tithing, reading the Word, being accountable and allowing yourself to be discipled weekly, etc….

        I’ll leave you with one of the most important Scriptures for me in my walk with Christ, because I spend so much time beating myself up for not being perfect all the time. Romans 8:1. Let God perfect you, but don’t beat yourself up all the time and live under condemnation. If God reveals something to you, repent immediately and agree with God that it is wrong, and ask His help to not do it again. Then forgive yourself and move on!!!

        Love and Hugs
        Ma Kim

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