Meekness is also known as humility. It is the soil from which all the other godly virtues grow. How does one obtain meekness? By taking every opportunity to humble yourself before God and men (including your spouse).
I have developed a love for Andrew Murray’s classic book simply titled, Humility. It is straight forward and cuts deep to the root of pride. I know because each year I re-read this book and realize there is still so much more pride in need of removal from my sinful heart.
A good check for us is to examine how quick we are to confess our sins to our spouse. One who is humble quickly chooses the path of a clear conscience. The proud resists such promptings of the Holy Spirit. Even when I know I’ve done wrong, I will justify myself and conclude there is no need of confession or repentance. Or I will say, “I confessed to God, and I know He has forgiven me.” This is true, but we must remember this command from James 5:16 (emphasis mine):
“Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.”
I heard of one metaphor that has been very helpful in encouraging the humble path in my life. The Spirit of God is like water seeking to fill us with His presence. Water always seeks out the lowest places first, thus the lower we become the more we will be filled with Him. Our humility glorifies God because we are making a choice to deny ourselves in order to make much of Him.
Charles Spurgeon, the great preacher from England defined humility in 1877 this way:
“Remember, dear brethren and sisters, if you would be preserved from falling, you must be schooled in humility, and keep very low before the Lord. When you are half-an-inch above the ground, you are that half-inch too high. Your safety is to be nothing. Trust Christ, but do not trust yourself. Rely on the Spirit of God, but do not rely on anything that is in yourself.”
The key is to always have an ear opened, listening to your conscience – for this is where the Holy Spirit brings conviction. Your spouse should be well aware of the current areas in your life where the Spirit is bringing conviction. If they don’t, then it’s most likely pride is growing unchecked in your heart.
Tom and I usually answer the question, “How long have you been married?” with this answer, “31 years – 29 of them happy ones!” The other two years was the time when God was taking us deeper into His presence by helping us see our pride. Not fun years, by any means, but we wouldn’t trade them for the world!
We’ll share more about them tomorrow in our Fragrant Aroma post!
How is your conscience – is it clear? Or has it been muddied
by a resistant heart?