Friday, July 15, 2005

False Humility

I miss Rocky. He was my first dog. Every kid misses his first dog. He remembers the good times that they had together. Running and talking and petting and walking together. So do I. Except I was the 35 year old kid with his first dog. We would go for long walks together and I would talk to him about all kinds of things in my life. Just like a kid. Ha.

Then another dog came into our family. We had to name it. She was a rescue and she didn't have anything. No collar. No identity. Nothing. We said she could stay just until the owners were found. Just as long as she got along. Just as long as she wasn't any bother. Just as long... And wouldn't you know it, over the course of several months, we fell in love with her. And adopted her.

2 dogs? We never planned that. Twice as much cleanup. Twice as much food. But they played together and they interacted with each other to keep each other company. And that was good. (They weren't indoor dogs.) One of the games I miss about Rocky is "Stalking". He was a great stalker. And I could watch him do it so often and so well. He'd make himself as insignificant as possible. Crouch down in the grass (or the snow.) Paws would go down. Body would flatten itself against the ground. And even his head would go right down. He'd practically disappear. But not his eyes. The eyes were as alive and as bright as you've ever seen. They would follow the "prey". (Usually the other dog.) And as they followed the prey, Rocky's body would tense up. Like a spring it would tighten and tense up ready for an explosion. I could watch it from a vantage point of being behind the dog as the back legs would slightly move for grip in the soil.

Suddenly, "BOOM", the spring would release and in an explosion of momentum, the predator would spring and begin a chase that seemed to start from almost immediate high speed. Incredible to watch!

Anyway, I've been thinking about false humility and true humility. And was reminded of my first dog Rocky. None of my dogs can do it like Rocky could. False humility is like a crouching "predator". It pretends to be nothing of significance. Makes itself small and unseen. Tries to look like nothing, but it's really all worked up and focussed on achieving something for itself.

False humility is what I struggle with all the time. True humility is what I need to learn.

Am I willing to take my eyes off my own needs and desires? See the small ways I can serve those around me? See the small things that need doing? See the "small" people around me? Instead of being a servant, being a slave to God?

When you go on medical leave and are diagnosed with cancer people tell you to concentrate on yourself and get better. It's good advice. But too much of that can leave you thinking about yourself and your symptoms and your health. My goal is to give my life away!

4 Comments:

At July 15, 2005, Anonymous Anonymous said...

O Dwayne, so many things you've done so well...
I always imagine it is great people who struggle with humility, and those not-so-great who struggle with false humility.
I think the largest difference is our attitude to those we reach to. Are we working to gain a notch in our belts, or are we overwhelemed with an urgent concern for them. Underneath the cockiness (I'll never forget the "best cup of coffee I ever had") I have seen tyour ardent compassion and love for others. Amidst the growth experienced at Living Hope, and the neat things God has accomplished through you in the last several years I can imagine there might be some struggle with humility, but not of a false variety.
I'm praying for you to finish your race strong
- of course I am also praying
that the tape is still a great
ways off!
But I believe that in these days of unexpressable adversity, Jesus will use you, even as He used Job in the midst of the ashes and broken pottery.

Thanks for the lessons and challenges that you are 'preaching' through this channel, I expect that in this you will continue to sow the good seed and also to minister pastorally to many!

With Love,
Kevin

 
At July 15, 2005, Blogger Eric said...

Dwayne, wow. I just heard. Have red through your comments -- appreciate your honesty and thoughtfulness. Marion and I will be praying and checking up from time to time. We miss you and the other "North End" pastors. Take care.

 
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