Humility: No More, No Less
But the serpent said to the woman, “You certainly will not die! For God knows that on the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened [that is, you will have greater awareness], and you will be like God, knowing [the difference between] good and evil.” And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was delightful to look at, and a tree to be desired in order to make one wise and insightful, she took some of its fruit and ate it; and she also gave some to her husband with her, and he ate. 📖 Genesis 3.4-6
The original sin, pride, wanting to be like something we’re not; wanting something other than, more than, less than God would have and want for us, is very much still a struggle for us today.
Adam and Eve lived in paradise. Perfection. No pain, no evil, no lack. But they still fell to the desire of wanting and pursuing more than God wanted for them (knowledge of good and evil). And yet at the same time, they wanted less than what God wanted for them (freedom from the burden of knowing evil).
The tree 🌳 of knowledge wasn’t about fruit. It represented a choice — to follow (obey) God or not. It represented a decision to trust God’s Lordship for determining what was right and wrong for us vs. now having to determine it for ourselves (knowledge of good and evil). It represented having to obey one thing, ‘don’t eat of the fruit,’ versus carrying the burden of having a list of things (the Law) to obey.
One of my favorite but also most challenging and humbling prayers is simply, “Lord, I want what You want for me. No more, no less.”
That’s hard to pray sometimes because you know that it inevitably means that you might very well not get the outcome you desire — ever — and will have to live with that. Sometimes it’s “no” from God. Sometimes it’s a “non yet.” Wanting something God wants for us outside of His timing also deserves a penalty flag. God isn’t just concerned about what we get, He cares about the timing and the way too.
You see, it’s prideful (and sinful) to desire and pursue more than God wants for us. Nor is it good to live beneath the privilege that He desires for us. Desiring and pursuing more or less than God wants for us means that our vision is not in sync with His. It means that we’re off balance, out of alignment, and are found wanting something ‘other than’ Him.
How can anything that we want and pursue apart from God be a good thing?
We invite disappointment, heartache, and calamity, not to mention wasted time when we desire and pursue things God doesn’t want for us. Or just simply accepting less than what He wants for us.
We don’t always control what desires and tastes arise in us. But we do control what we meditate upon, what we nurture and feed, and ultimately pursue or settle for. What we feed always gets strong and what we starve always gets weaker.
Humility is aligning our desires and pursuits to match the Father’s heart for us in any particular situation. Not less than and not more than. God’s desire for us should be enough. And we can trust that whatever He wants for us is good for us.
A Prayer For Today
Lord, give us a desire for the things You desire for us. Give us a heart for Your heart. No more, no less.