Proverbs 27:21 (KJV)
“As the fining pot for silver, and the furnace for gold; so is a man to his praise.”
Everyone has the potential to be great. You can probably look back at your life and identify things that you were really good at and things that you received recognition for. During those times, people have probably congratulated you, showered you with gifts and words of encouragement. "You did it." "Awesome job." "You were great." We can be great at a lot of things but in the end that’s not what really matters. Being great at using your gifts or talents is one aspect of life and the other aspect is being great in character. We can accomplish many things and receive many accolades, but how is our character represented? Our character is represented through our actions and the words that we speak. People discover who we really are by what’s expressed outwardly. Jesus said that a tree will be known by their fruit (Matt 7:20; Luke 6:44).
Another way that people can identify your character is by the way you respond to praise. Have you ever seen someone who received a compliment and they responded, “I know.”? A person can say “You did a really good job” and the other person responds, “I know.” They forget about saying “Thank you,” they have no sincerity, they just express pride and conceit. Maybe you have met people who ignore you completely and overlooks you to talk to someone of “higher caliber.” It's funny how a little success can sometimes go to the head. Many of us can start to think so highly of ourselves that it reflects a poor character. When you receive praise does it make you prideful, or do you accept it and respond with humility?
I ask this question because each one of us is out to make something of our lives. We have a God-given purpose that we are aiming to accomplish. Surely, there will be many successes for us. We will accomplish goals, impact people’s lives, start businesses, start new jobs, acquire things that we desire such as new houses and cars. How will we react to all of this success?
My prayer is that as God continues to bless us in accomplishing his will for our lives, we will meet it with a humble heart. When praises start to come your way, they will be a great test of your character. Your character will not be hidden. Eventually, what’s inside will come out. If we are humble, God will be able to bless us even more because he sees our heart and he knows that we are genuinely seeking to express his character. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. (Gal. 5:22-23). It is up to us to remain humble and consistently express godly character.
Here are three ways that we can stay humble:
1. Remember who we are.
The more success we have, the more humble we must become. We can never forget that God is the one helping us to propel forward. In your quiet time with God, you can study the scripture passages given at each point to further encourage you in your humble walk with God.
May God Continue to bless you in your successes,