MAN1: Why don’t you go swim out into that ocean?
MAN2: I can’t. I don’t know how to swim.
MAN1: Why don’t you go swim out into that ocean?
MAN2: I don’t know how to swim, but I’ll go. Why not?
Which MAN2 are you? It can be easy to know our physical limitations, or what I call “physical modesty.” We don’t go swim out into the ocean if we don’t know how to swim, because we will surely drown. But what about our “inner” limitations, our “inner” modesty?
Modesty is defined as, “the quality or state of being unassuming or moderate in the estimation of one’s abilities.” Taking the example above, if we can’t swim, we don’t swim out into the ocean. But in an “inner” sense, we also can’t control others, but we often try. What this brings up is: Are we practicing modesty or “God”esty?
The Bible is full of stories of men and women who recognized their physical limitations but not their “inner” limitations. I would cite them all here if I knew them all or even just one. And I know I should. But, if I’m being modest, I know pretty well the story of Jesus, and it is quite evident that Jesus recognized that He was BOTH physically and “inner” limited. Jesus practiced not modesty but “God”esty. Jesus would not be Jesus were it not for “God’esty that His Father God brought down to Him God’s Holy Spirit to help Jesus say and do all things according to His Father’s Will. Jesus would not be Jesus were it not for His “God”esty that determined He was not modesty but rather “God”esty. Being put to death is a perfect example of this. Who in their right mind would modestly choose being rejected, abused, and killed if they could stop it? Jesus could have stopped it….but He didn’t. Why? Because Jesus was all about “God”esty. Jesus was about doing God’s Will and not His own. Jesus was all about fulfilling God’s Purpose and Plan for His Life, i.e., to bring God from Heaven down to earth to teach and heal and save us all, then to leave earth and go back to Heaven to be with His Father, only to come back again (sooner than later). Jesus never once said, “I’m Jesus! Don’t you see how great I am?” Jesus never boasted about the fact that He was darn great. Awesome, in fact! Jesus just ‘God”esty pleased God and not man. Jesus felt no need to control others. If they heard His Father’s Message, great….awesome! But if they didn’t, Jesus did not grab them and shake them and say, “What’s wrong with you? Don’t you know I speak the truth! Why are you so stupid when I am so great?” No, Jesus would never say that because Jesus practiced “God”esty.
I, on the other hand, want to grab and shake people and say, “What’s wrong with you? Don’t you know how great I am? Awesome, in fact!” That’s because I suffer from a severe case of NOT practicing and implementing “God”esty. And if I tell you how much I suffer for this, that in itself would be modest. Because I suffer greatly. But I listen while I languish. And I learn. And I let God work that out in me. It is a beast of a burden, if I’m being honest, but God reminds me, “Timothy, the least in this world will be the Most in My Kingdom!” That said, I do believe I am a great artist, and I want everyone to know that. But saying this, I am NOT practicing “God”esty because it is ONLY God who gets the Glory for me being a great artist, if in fact that is what I am. I might have gone to college to learn how to write and act and pick up a brush to put some paint on a canvas to “speak,” but it is truly ONLY God who directs me as such. It is ONLY God who says to me, “Timothy, I put a very nice creative spirt in you. Awesome, in fact! I want you to use it to glorify Me!” God didn’t have to do that, but God did it because I fit the job description very well. God knows all about my pain and how I must use that as an artist to heal my wounds while at the same time exposing them. God knew I would heal and expose myself from the inside to go outside to remind others how much God heals and exposes those who desire to glorify Him. The pen is dipped in Jesus’ Blood, my insides bring forth Jesus on the outside to ring truth on the stage, and the brush is also dipped in Jesus’ Blood as it reveals a deeper truth, a deeper meaning, and a deeper purpose. People who know me well would collectively respond, “That Timothy, he sure is deep!” Yes, I know….duh!
Let us practice “God”esty today. Don’t go swimming out into an ocean if you can’t swim. And even if you can swim, ask God if it’s okay and safe for you to swim out there. There are sharks hanging around and unpredictable tides and waves. God will let you know if you can avoid the sharks and ride the tides and waves. You won’t know this but God Will. If you have great talents and gifts, it’s God who gave them to you to use for His Glory. By all means, USE THEM….PLEASE!!!! But give credit where credit is due: It’s God’s talents and gifts freely given to you to give back to Him, to shine the light on how marvelous He is. “Marvelous” beings are ones who love the world so much that they send their only begotten Son to save that same world. God IS That Marvelous Being! And if I’m being modest, the ONLY Marvelous Being that matters!
Timothy J. Verret