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Self Promotion ~ JC Calkins

Posted: August 26th, 2014 | Category: Humble, Inspirational, Jesus Follower, Meek, Praise | Comments

self promotion

Self-promotion is an essential skill set in this world, but in the world which our God created, it’s an unwanted, unnecessary and unwelcome distraction. Taking any sort of credit for that which God has enabled (regardless of how He has done that) will one day come back to bite us. “Moses and Aaron told the people to meet together in front of the rock. Then Moses said, “You people are always complaining. Now listen to me. I will cause water to flow from this rock.” (Numbers 20:10 ERV) “Moses lifted his arm and hit the rock twice. Water began flowing from the rock, and the people and their animals drank that water.” (Numbers 20:11 ERV). This was a good thing, a needed thing, a fortuitous blessing, a welcomed act by those thirsty people following Moses and Aaron. Right? Wrong, there was nothing fortuitous about it. “But the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “You did not trust me enough to honor me and show the people that I am holy. You did not show the Israelites that the power to make the water came from me. So you will not lead the people into the land that I have given them.” (Numbers 20:12 ERV). In essence, this was tough-love parenting, something akin to   I still love you but you screwed up on that one! All of the sacrifice, faith, hardships and trust, ensured only one thing, God’s will prevails, while the act of taking credit for God’s power and presence, denied what was most certainly the will of Moses. Moses may have presumed for a split second that the people he was leading were following him, rather than the One who sent Him. Letting thoughts like these override the guidance of God’s Holy Spirit reflects another power source at work, that of the one who appeals to our human need for glorification or success. Anyone doing God’s work, must remember that without God, none of that work would ever even get off the starting blocks. It’s even more critical for us to understand that God’s work takes precedence over every other form of work. All other forms of work are necessary, but secondarily so. Our human nature, our desire for recognition, when even momentarily parted from God’s counsel, generally leads us away from God. Even when it doesn’t seem like God’s work, the gifts used to do all good works come from God, so it still is His glory abounding. It is not jealousy which we are seeing in our God, it is His love for us and our salvation and it is His wisdom which must always prevail.

We NEED to remember just exactly why the meek will inherit the earth (Matthew 5:5). When any degree of recognition and approval are the forces steering or driving our ambitions, or are our underlying motivations, even if only momentarily, we will likely be denied at least some part of our inheritance. I have no doubt that Moses is very close to God now, losing only that earthy inheritance. I personally will not blindly follow any other human being, for that primary trust and reliance are reserved for our God. I will listen to those whom God has called, enabled, equipped or sent, but all such listening must be tempered by the most trusted voice, that of The Lord. Self promotion is a weakness, while glorifying God is a well of blessings. Whatever good flows from each of us, is our God at work through us. Being humbled should be considered a monumental blessing, for it may be that very act which literally saves our lives. God is our beloved leader, the One we trust above all else. The rest of us are just well equipped, expedition guides, who should ALWAYS point all of the credit toward God. If this is confusing, ask God directly for clarification.