Daily Devotional – I’m Normal.™ I AM Ministries
“To promote Godly living in a culture committed to destroying it”
Monday, July 18, 2016
Humbled In Humor
Have you ever experienced a great victory, only to have difficulty conveying your success and joy to family and friends? After your moment of glory, have circumstances ever become difficult and humbling quickly? If so, you’re not alone. Even God’s best servants are not exempt. In Acts Chapter 12, we see how Peter is miraculously released from prison by an angel of God, only to be humbled as he tries to share the victory with others. As the story unfolds after his release, we see God offering us messages through His use of humor and humility.
A free man once more, Peter was guided by the Holy Spirit to visit the house of Mary, mother of John Mark (author of the book of Mark), where his friends were gathered to pray for him. The recipient of a bona fide miracle, Peter must have felt somewhat elated and special after his release from what had appeared to be certain death. He must have been almost bursting to tell his incredible story about the LORD’s miraculous intervention in his life, sending an angel to release him and to calm the guards as he made his unexpected escape (Acts 12:7-10).
Moreover, God had chosen not to bestow such a miracle on James, brother of John, just days before, a decision which resulted in James’ execution. Peter must have felt both survivor’s remorse and a twinge of pride that God had selected him to survive instead of the other apostle (Acts 12:11). Peter’s pride was about to be reined in, however.
When Peter knocked on Mary’s door, a servant girl named Rhoda responded to his pounding. Having heard Peter preach and pray, she recognized his voice instantly (Acts 12:14). Then, somewhat comically, she becomes so excited she runs away from the door to tell others the exciting news of their miracle guest. Peter must have felt frustrated, confused, and disappointed.
What a legacy for Rhoda. Her presence in Mary’s house meant she was part of an elite group of new Christians; however, Scripture records her as the daffy, scatter-brained doorkeeper. In her ecstasy, she panicked and forgot to open the door, so today we chuckle at here actions. Because of her extreme joy, she left Peter standing in the night air. In fairness to Rhoda, we have probably all done something similar, where our heart is leaping for joy, but our actions transmit an unintended insult or a social gaffe. The reality of Peter’s presence may not have even sunk in completely, as sometimes things for which we wish most earnestly are the most difficult to believe when they actually happen.
God, of course, was in control despite the chaos. One can’t help but wonder if He were chuckling a bit at these events. God’s purpose for Peter at that moment was for him to be humbled, not puffed up by the honors bestowed upon him by the angel or by his deliverance. Peter was forced to continue knocking and to experience the delay in his admittance, standing alone in the cold. All this difficulty was meant to be a sign to remind him that he was now just one of the gang again. During his wait at the door, Peter had time to remember that he was just an ordinary man, subject to all the inconveniences and threats that befall us.
God often humbles his servants so they may be less tempted by pride. This humbling process is normal. Each of us is in danger of being caught by the sin of pride when we do our work for the LORD. But God normally provides a corresponding way to humble us, which feels bad, but is ultimately for our good. Expect being called to humility when you work for Him, it’s His normal way. Remember: it’s for your own benefit even if it feels uncomfortable. You just might find a bit of humor in it all.
A servant of Jesus Christ
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