When you become a new creation in Christ (2 Cor. 5:17), God wants to give you a brand-new perspective, a promising future, and an everlasting hope. One important byproduct of this awesome transformation is a new wardrobe as well! What I mean is this: You exchange your old, dirty, raggedy clothes—which represent your former and sinful ways—for clean, gleaming, new clothes—which represent your justification and sanctification through Christ.
But instead of trendy styles or expensive fabrics, Colossians 3:12 (NIV) explains what your new clothes are made of: "Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience."
As a new creation in Christ with a new mission in life—to share Jesus and the gospel with others—you now are to be clothed with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. These qualities are worth far more than an entire closet filled with designer suits or fancy dresses. I want to focus on humility because I believe it is a huge precursor to having the boldness to share your faith with others.
Where does humility come from? When we as human beings are so prone to pride and egotism, how do we cultivate true humility in our hearts? James 3:13 reveals that "humility comes from wisdom." You might be thinking, Okay, so how do I get wisdom? We find this answer in the book of James as well:
"If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all men liberally and without criticism, and it will be given to him" (James 1:5, MEV).
It's surprisingly simple: pray for wisdom and it will be given to you—and out of that wisdom, humility springs forth. C. S. Lewis wrote in his book Mere Christianity, "True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less." When we think of ourselves less, it takes away the concern for our possessions, our reputation, and our safety when we endeavor to share Jesus Christ with someone. Paul's declaration in Acts 20:22–25 is a beautiful example of this truth. He wrote,
And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me. However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God's grace. Now I know that none of you among whom I have gone about preaching the kingdom will ever see me again.
After Paul spoke these words to the Ephesian elders, he got down on his knees and prayed with them as they wept. What a heart-wrenching scene! Paul said good-bye to beloved friends and fellow workers in ministry, knowing he would never see them again. The Holy Spirit revealed to him that hardships and prison awaited him. And yet he forged ahead with his God-given task, unconcerned for his own future or safety. He considered his life worth nothing; his singular mission was to share the Good News.
Paul is an astonishing example to us all of humility and total surrender to the Lord's will in order to bring the gospel to lost souls. May we as Christians become completely humble as we endeavor to share our faith with those around us.
Pastor Dudley Rutherford is the author of Compelled: The Irresistible Call to Share Your Faith (available on Amazon) and the senior pastor of Shepherd Church in Porter Ranch, California, which has four campuses in the Greater Los Angeles area. You can connect with Dudley at LiftUpJesus.com and on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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