Maundy Thursday, March 29

Philippians 2:5-11 (ESV)

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.  And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.  Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Humility, servanthood, and obedience—these are all attributes of Jesus.  Attributes that we, as His followers, should aspire to.

Humility is not thinking less (or poorly) of yourself but thinking of yourself less.  Humility allows us to put others ahead of ourselves, to consider their needs before our own.  It prompts us to serve others, not out of our excess, but in our very weakness.  Humility leads to submission to God, and to one another out of reverence to the Lord.

In his book, The Celebration of Discipline, Richard Foster writes, “In submission we are at last free to value other people.  Their dreams and plans become important to us.  We have entered into a new, wonderful, glorious freedom—the freedom to give up our own rights for the good of others.  For the first time we can love people unconditionally.  We have given up the right to demand that they return our love.”

Jesus is our ultimate example of humility, submission, service, and obedience.  He gave up His divine rights for the good of others, for us.  He loves us unconditionally, giving up His right to demand that we return His love.

He went to the cross for us.  Let us bow before Him in humility and confess with gratitude and singleness of heart that Jesus Christ is Lord.

Most gracious Father, thank You for the cross.  Shape us to be more like Your Son Jesus, that with humility and in submission we may serve others and obey You.  All to Your glory. Amen!

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