The Heights of Humility
Miriam and Aaron criticized Moses because he had married a Cushite woman… But the Lord heard them. (Now Moses was very humble—more humble than any other person on earth.) – Numbers 12:1-3 excerpt (NLT)
He is extolled as the Great Emancipator, yet he was very humble.
He is revered as the Great Law Giver, yet he was very humble.
He is celebrated as one of the greatest leaders Israel has ever known, yet he was described as more humble than any other person on the planet.
Our notions of greatness and grand charisma do not easily align with our understanding of humility. When we think about what decisive, impactful, strong leadership entails, deep humility is not a trait that readily comes to most minds.
Moses’ decision to marry a black woman from North Africa earned him the ire of his siblings Miriam and Aaron. Moses responded to their criticism with silent humility, and that humility gave God the opportunity to show Moses’ critics who Moses really was.
Humility in the face of virulent attack gives our self-control the opportunity to speak volumes.
Staying calmly focused on our assignments instead of allowing the contentiousness of detractors to derail us gives voice and volume to our deepest devotion.
Resisting the temptation to return evil for evil says more about how our faith behaves under fire than ostentatious testimonies ever could.
At the 94th Academy Awards, Will Smith walked onstage and slapped Chris Rock after Rock made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s shaved head. Smith returned to his seat and shouted profane remarks at Rock, who briefly responded but then continued MCing the awards program with no further interruptions.
Chris Rock hasn’t said very much about the incident. He really doesn’t have to. The humility with which he met hostility says it all.
Lord, in difficult circumstances, amplify your humility through us. Amen.
Kenneth L. Samuel is Pastor of Victory for the World Church, Stone Mountain, Georgia.