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Love Pursuit

Okay, I’m going to make a crazy counter-cultural statement here (which is kind of typical for me). Love is NOT the result of a spine-tingling infatuation with someone of the opposite sex. No, true love is birthed through humility.

The pursuit of love can only come by traveling the road of humility. 

Love is not self-seeking, thus love must be birthed through humility. At the bowing of the head, the humbling of the heart, grace finds entrance. And grace empowers a fierce woman to truly love.

When I blog on the topic of humility, a common response I hear is the concern that I’m proposing women become “doormats.” (My husband chuckles when he reads one of these comments, because he knows I’m no “doormat!”)

It’s obvious that humility is not a character quality many admire today. Sherry Argov, a New York Times best-selling author, comedian and radio show host, offers this advice to women:

“Humility? Don’t worry. It’s a treatable affliction, a mental glitch. If you catch yourself being modest or humble or any of that nonsense, correct the problem immediately . . . If someone else doesn’t like your confidence, that’s their problem. Why? You always come before they do, that’s why” (emphasis hers).

Her counsel flies in the face of our calling as Christ-followers. It’s the opposite of God’s instruction in how to treat others. Her advice echoes the attitude of our culture, which gets hung up on the idea of humility and views it from a negative perspective. This beautiful (and necessary) virtue gets a bad rap today and I wonder if people have confused humility with unhealthy debasement.

Humility is not beating up yourself or submitting to abusive behavior.  

Humility is not having a negative self-image. 

No, not at all, in fact . . . humility’s view of self is eclipsed by a right view of God. In reality, humility has little to do with how I see myself, but has everything to do with how I see God.

Humility is the true response to a proper view of God.  

Pride is our natural default position. We are naturally prone to pride. By “pride” I mean a self-centered focus that views all of life through the grid of “how this affects ME.” In contrast to that, humility operates from a God-centered perspective that views all of life through the grid of how my heart and actions promote (or detract from) God’s glory.

Humility opens the door for God’s presence to be at home in our hearts (Isaiah 57:15) and His grace to move into the situation at hand (James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5).

Jesus compared this condition to that of a little child. It’s the recognition that we are helpless and completely dependent on Him. Humility doesn’t grasp for, or demand control, but it gladly surrenders to the Master’s control. When we maintain a steady gaze on God, childlike humility permeates our thoughts, attitudes, and actions.

How Humility affects a Fierce Woman:

♥ She recognizes God is God and she’s not, so she can release control to Him.

♥ She recognizes she’s not always right, therefore she doesn’t demand others see things her way.

♥ She’s teachable and open to input/correction for spiritual growth from others. She’s willing to be held accountable after being confronted with blind-spots.

♥ Because she recognizes God’s worth and value, her submission to Him motivates her to treat others with kindness and respect.

♥ She’s a “soft” warrior. Her strength is not diminished by humility but is refined and tempered by it. She is soft clay in the Potter’s hands.

What is God showing you?

Excerpt from Fierce Women: The Power of a Soft Warrior © 2012• Kimberly Wagner • Moody Publishers

2 Comments

  • Jamie

    Kim, I just want to say “thank you” again. Your words are so comforting and encouraging. It is difficult to live a counter-cultural life as a woman/wife/mother, but I often enjoy the challenge. I am often convicted by God’s word and love your “soft warrior” term because that defines so perfectly how I feel inside. I have to praise the Lord that He is working in my husband’s life in so many ways. Once I let go and let Him lead and take over, He has proven faithful over and over again. I also appreciate your encouragement that we are NOT to be abused and that includes emotional. The day after I almost took a short time away with our 5 children, the Lord really grabbed a hold of my husbands heart and we are still home today with much fewer bad days and more good days, all glory be to the Lord. God used your book to help me, challenge me and to change my husband’s heart. Thank the Lord we are all together today and learning to trust Him more each day.

    Thank you Kim, I look forward to seeing you again at TW 14!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Kimberly Wagner

    Hello Jamie ~

    What a joy to hear how God has been working in your marriage! I am so encouraged when I hear testimonies like yours. Oh, how the Father is being glorified by you! Only eternity will reveal all the ways your obedience will have an effect on your children and others who are watching your life!

    Come and give me a hug at TW 14!! 🙂