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Humility: A Bottom-Drawer Mentality

November 1, 2015

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In our household, it’s fair to say I’m guilty of hogging the bathroom.

Thinking about self first and taking care of self first is what comes naturally to the human heart pumped up with pride.

Like a lot of women, I spend more than thirty minutes during my morning routine. My
husband, like most males, logs less than thirty minutes getting dressed and out the door. It stands to reason that I use many more cosmetics and beauty
tools in the process. So doesn’t it make logical sense that the top two cabinet drawers are designated hers, while the bottom one is relegated to his? I
thought so, but . . .

The Lord used this “top-drawer” picture as an object lesson to reveal the exalted view I had of myself. In the famous chapter on the humility of Christ,
these words from Scripture came rushing to mind:

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own
interests, but also to the interests of others (Phil 2:3–4).

Pride: Top-Drawer Thinking

My heart was consumed with self when it came to my marriage. Take a peek into these secret unspoken attitudes:

  • What I have going on is the most important thing going on.

  • My ministry position trumps my husband’s career.

  • I’ll find time to be a helper to my mate after my needs are met.

Thinking about self first and taking care of self first is what comes naturally to the human heart pumped up with pride. My sickly heart in no way
resembled the humble heart that readily zooms in on others and acts upon their best interests. The attitude of Jesus is what I desperately needed and
longed for.

Humility: Bottom-Drawer Thinking

Two divergent mindsets. How does a person begin to move from one way of thinking to the other?

Self-determination won’t get you there. Your best Olympic leap won’t be enough. The only way, very simply, is to be laid l-o-w. To humble yourself can look
like this . . .

  • To grasp the gravity of your sins before a holy God (Isa. 6:1–7; Ps. 51:4).
  • To agree with God about what He says is the naked condition, not the prettied-up version, of your heart (Ps. 51:6; 1 Peter 5:57).
  • To park in the Holy Word, basking in God’s glorious majesty, until you sense the immensity of the Lord of the universe, and the smallness of self (Isa. 40:931).
  • To daily repent of the evidences of pride (Ps. 139:2324).
  • To meditate on the humility of Christ (Phil. 2).

Sisters, let’s not be naïve. Even as humility grows, pride will stick around. Slaying pride’s ugly horns is a daily battle.

Even as humility grows, pride will stick around. Slaying pride’s ugly horns is a daily battle.

In The Seeking Heart, Francois Fenelon wrote, “True humility comes from seeking the interests of God before your own. Humility comes in no longer living
for yourself but in letting Jesus Christ live His life in you.”

Christ: The Power for Bottom-Drawer Living

Years later, my husband and I are now living in another home. Interestingly, the bathroom drawers have the exact configuration as our former one. This time
around I designated the top drawer for my husband and I took the bottom ones. I haven’t forgotten the divine lesson as I’m prompted daily to cultivate
Christlike “bottom-drawer” thinking instead of rising up to top-drawer mentality. It’s a reminder I need every day.

Even though I miss the mark, realizing the gospel power of Christ is being lived out in a sinner like me gives me renewed hope and joy as I boast of Jesus
who is transforming my heart into one more like His!

And because of him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, righteousness and sanctification and redemption, so that, as it is written,
“Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord” (1 Cor. 1:30–31).

Which drawer best illustrates the attitude of your heart: top or bottom?

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