90 Joy

The twenty-second secret to humility is Joy.

Rejoice in the Lord always.  I will say it again, rejoice.  Philippians 4:4

The Lord has impressed on my heart the importance of smiling.  I have heard many times, “Phil, you really need to smile more.”  Years ago at work I decided to do so.  After a couple of weeks I asked a co-worker for feedback.  I expected to hear, “You are much happier.”  I heard “You are less grumpy in the morning.”  Hmm, not smiling can communicate grumpiness.

I have struggled with smiling.  I often do not feel like smiling.  I hear that my frown lines are growing.  I think, “I don’t want to smile.  I hate smiling.  I’m angry.  I’m sad.  I’m not a happy camper.  Why should I smile?”  I rationalize that I have gone through a lot in life, and so I feel justified to feel what I feel when I feel it.

However, feeling what I feel when I feel it is not submitting my feelings to the Lord.  He clearly says, “Rejoice in the Lord always.  I will say it again, rejoice.”  The next verse says, “Let your gentleness be evident to all.” (Philippians 4:5)  Joy enables us to be gentle and communicates warmth and acceptance.  Being joyful enables us to be more loving.

Letting go of negative emotions and being joyful requires humility.  We need to let go of resistance and embrace God’s promises.  We have a glorious future, bright and beautiful.  God promises that He will be with us for eternity.  Jesus said, “…rejoice that your names are written in heaven.” (Luke 10:20)

“Rejoice in the Lord…”  We find our joy in the Lord.  Anything or anyone else only bring fleeting moments of joy.  The joy of the Lord lasts for eternity.  We need to open our hearts to Him.  As our hearts connect with His heart, we will find lasting joy.

With thoughts heaven,

Noah Woodrich

WITH ME: Wisdom Intercession Teaching Hospitality Mercy Encouragement

Bringing grace and truth to the downcast; comforting others with the comfort, which we received.  We have a dream & need support and prayers.

Back to Outline:  http://www.livingwithperfectionism.wordpress.com


89 Waiting

The twenty first secret to humility is Waiting.

Better a patient man than a warrior, a man who controls his temper than one who takes a city.  Proverbs 16:32

For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men.  It teaches us to…to live self-controlled…lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ…  Titus 2:11-13

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.  Colossians 4:2

I hate waiting.  Actually, I despise it.  I have as long as I can remember.  I hated waiting in the lunch line.  I hated waiting for the bus.  I hated waiting in line for a ride at fairs.

I felt like I was being held captive whenever I had to wait, especially in a line.  If I could sit and wait, such as in a waiting room for the dentist, I could at least occupy myself with reading a magazine.  Still, I would feel stuck.  I was somewhere I did not want to be.  Waiting involved being forced to do something I did not want to do, even when that meant I was being forced to do nothing.

The point behind this secret is that we need to yield our will to that of others.  For example, in the line we yield to the people ahead of us.  We also become part of that line.  In the same way, the others behind us need to yield to us.

I used to take some comfort in watching a line behind me grow even as the line ahead of me decreased.  It was like payback; I got to laugh at those behind me.  “I had to wait so long, and now you have to!”  I liked it even better when I saw that others had to wait longer than I did.  My wife says, “Insert villain laugh here.”  Of course, laughing at other people waiting missed the power of the secret.

Waiting can develop humility in us if we will allow ourselves to release our frustrations to God and allow our hearts to become serene, as we trust in Him.  We need to let go of an attitude of resentment.  We need to learn to be satisfied where we are while we wait for what we need.  Knowing that we have everything we need for life and godliness helps us to learn patience.

As to our spiritual development, we need to open our hearts to the hope of becoming more like Christ.  We wait for God to do His work in us.  While we wait, we can watch what He is doing and thank Him for it.  We can pray that He continues to do His work in us.  Consider, we want God’s presence which we can have anywhere at any time.

The church has been waiting for Christ’s return for almost two thousand years.  Imagine this:  Jesus Himself has been waiting to come back.  He has been very patient in His waiting.

Watching and waiting,

Noah Woodrich

WITH ME: Wisdom Intercession Teaching Hospitality Mercy Encouragement

Bringing grace and truth to the downcast; comforting others with the comfort, which we received.  We have a dream & need support and prayers.

Back to Outline:  http://www.livingwithperfectionism.wordpress.com


88 Contentment

Secret number 20 to finding humility is Contentment.

Someone we know had the following thoughts on discontent:  By nature we are discontented.  No matter what we get in life, we will never be fully satisfied.  We can find something to complain about in whatever circumstances we find ourselves.  If that is really true (and I find it true for myself), then how can we find real contentment?

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty.  I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.  I can do everything through Him Who gives me strength.  Philippians 4:12-13

Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”  Hebrews 13:5

The Apostle Paul experienced times of plenty as well as times of lack.  He fully expected those to whom he wrote to experience similar times of plenty and lack.  He indicated that we can find contentment in either situation.  When times are good we expect the good times to continue into the future.  We can become disappointed when we enter a time of lack.  One clue to contentment is to enjoy the present.  Life is a roller coaster.  We need to expect the ups and downs, throw our hands in the air and say, “wheeeee!”

Paul gives us another clue:  “I can do everything through Him Who gives me strength.”  We need to find our life in Jesus.  Hebrews 13:5 implies a similar thought.  We can be content with what we have because we have God’s presence with us.  No matter what is taken from us, no one can take God’s presence from us.  By the way, the hands in the air could be utilized to praise Him for the adventure and also that He is trustworthy and knows the track and has made it stable.

Okay, so, this is all very fine theology, but when we are hungry or thirsty, cold or hot, in need or full, theology does little to comfort us.  Times of lack give us the opportunity to learn real contentment, not just lofty ideals of how one could possibly become content.  When we lack, we connect with our brokenness as well become aware of how much we cannot control our circumstances.  When we feel our need we can become scared.  This is especially true for those of us who deal with perfectionism.  Neediness is terrifying because perfectionism is about proving ourselves to others and even more to self how not in need we are.

Contentment does not mean denying feeling needy.  Rather, contentment means finding peace and joy even in the midst of lack and neediness.  Humility comes in at this point when we own our need.  Lasting peace and joy come from the Lord Himself not from the circumstances of our lives being perfect.  When in need, we cry out to Him and find the Lord meeting our hearts.  He says, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”  We find ultimate satisfaction in Christ

Learning the secret of contentment,

Noah & Marguex Woodrich

WITH ME: Wisdom Intercession Teaching Hospitality Mercy Encouragement

Bringing grace and truth to the downcast; comforting others with the comfort, which we received.  We have a dream & need support and prayers.

Back to Outline:  http://www.livingwithperfectionism.wordpress.com


87 Serving

Secret number 19 to finding humility is Serving.

For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve and to give His life as a ransom for many.  Mark 10:45

As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  John 13:34

Jesus provides our example.  He served.  He could have demanded we serve Him.  After all, He was the Ultimate Authority of the universe come to Earth.  He deserves our worship, honor and praise.  Yet, He did not demand any of this.  Rather, He came and served.

Not only did Jesus preach the Gospel and heal the sick, He even got Himself killed in the process of making sure our sins were accounted for—every one of them.  Consider the billions of people who have ever existed, and the countless sins each one of us has committed.  Jesus died for every single sin!  Oh, that all would take advantage of this heart freeing truth: their sins are covered!

Now, to follow Jesus’ example does not mean we will all be martyred, although many throughout the world have died/are dying and will die for Christ.  Yet we all are to serve one another.  Service takes a variety of forms, such as, doing practical things to help others.

The reality is, though, we resist serving others.  We think:  Why should I?  What do I get out of it?  I don’t feel like it, nor do I have the time or energy.  Others’ needs are not my concern.

We need to hear our Master, “As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”  He could have stayed in Heaven.  He made the ultimate sacrifice just to be born a human.  Then, He was mocked, abused and tortured to death.  He did not have to do this, except that this was His whole plan.  He chose to allow Himself to be treated so shamefully in order to save us.

Truly, we need to let go of our pride to serve others.  We need to put them ahead of ourselves.  We take care of others as if we are taking care of ourselves.  “Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 19:19)  This requires us to let go of our agenda.  We need, instead, to care about others’ condition.

How can we serve others?  What do we hear God calling us to do today?

How can I serve you?  Your Servant,

Noah Woodrich

WITH ME: Wisdom Intercession Teaching Hospitality Mercy Encouragement

Bringing grace and truth to the downcast; comforting others with the comfort, which we received.  We have a dream & need support and prayers.

Back to Outline:  http://www.livingwithperfectionism.wordpress.com