Friday, August 24th, 2012
Finding Favor (Part 2: Humility)
Then He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was subject to them... And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and men.
Luke 2:51-52 (NKJV)
So they said, 'You have saved our lives; let us find favor in the sight of my lord, and we will be Pharaoh's servants.'
Genesis 47:25 (NKJV)
When Jesus was 12, He waved a flag of independence. On a family trip to Passover, 'The Boy Jesus lingered behind in Jerusalem. And Joseph and His mother did not know it' (Luke 2:43). Meanwhile, young Jesus hung out at the temple and astonished the teachers.
His parents found Him three days later. His mother's pleading question sounds like any troubled parent today: 'Son, why have You done this to us?' (v.48). The Son's answer sounds a bit bold: 'Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father's business?' (v.49).
But He didn't do it again. To the best of our knowledge, the young King subjected Himself to His parents' authority for the next 18 years. His humility remains unmatched. Scripture indicates that God connected Jesus' earthly increase in wisdom, stature, and favor to His humility.
In today's second scripture, Joseph's family came to live in Egypt following a great famine in Canaan. His older brothers (the ones who sold him to kidnappers) submitted themselves to Joseph and to Pharaoh. They sought God's favor in humility, and they received it.
Therefore, 'Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up' (James 4:10). You'll never get as high as the King on the cross, but you will receive God's favor.
Being humble in Hollywood seems like walking against the flow--like you'll get swept under a red carpet and never get noticed. But Jesus rules the red. 'With the precious blood of Christ' (1 Peter 1:19), the power shifted--from the ace of spades to the King of hearts.
Because 'Love never fails' (1 Corinthians 13:8), neither does humility. God will lift you above the flow and place you safely on His Own red carpet. That's favor.
To Be Continued...
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Finding Favor series.