Here’s a visual for Lord of The Nerds fans: imagine you’re half-sized and perched on one of the countless boughs of an infinite Treebeard. You’re seeing the world from on high; so different a view it is! You feel the breeze on your face, ruffling your hair and rustling the green leaves. You cling tightly to your seat as it sways, back and forth, its owner taking great strides. You smell earthiness – creation. You notice close by, all your loved ones (equally proportioned), and just a bit further away are even more halflings sitting among the leafy branches. You hear all their voices as a buzzing chorus or, if you focus, individually. Over all is the soft, rumbly voice of the great Ent, Himself, and you all converse, with you saying brave things like, “The closer we are to danger, the farther we are from harm;” and “Take us south.”
This is the picture this morning’s Tw/G (time with God) has conjured for me. God is like a universal tree, and we are tiny beings raised to sit among His limbs, talking merrily with fellow believers, and praying that He listen to our requests to head toward the battle in the hopes of rescuing even more Hobbits and friends. There are two important messages growing from this imagery.
One is the price of the ticket to this ride. It’s been paid for, in full, by the mighty Vine. All we need do is raise our arms, like a toddler asking to be picked up. We are bought for the boughs.
The other is that any who wish for the light are welcome, and are equally positioned, blessed to be cargo in this canopy. And all are equally concerned with the fate of those still aground. We are trying to
…count others more significant than yourselves…
“Getting humble is recognizing all people as the careful works of God, equally worthy of love and sacrifice.”
WiRE devotional “Gotta Get Humble”
“It’s still all about me – I’m not being able to ‘focus’ on helping others – too much… ‘work’ and ‘business’…”
My journal, 2008
Is humility an intentional thing? Certainly! At least, at first it is. It can be a learned behavior, practiced until it becomes habit, done without a second thought.
“Humility is NOT thinking less of oneself, but thinking of oneself less [often].”
WiRE suggests these things to do:
- Initiate a conversation and listen more than I talk
- Serve in a way that’s mundane or difficult, (even unpleasant)
- Help anonymously
- Give someone the credit they deserve, even if I deserve some, too
I have seen people consciously do these things for me, and it encourages me to try and not be the one just being heard, or being served, or given the credit. “I know I still make mistakes,” (name that song), and I make them when I am still the focus of my own thinking. And I pray, asking God to ‘Take me south.’