Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Devotionals for the Heart: Humility

Humble in Heart

A devotional by Christa MacDonald

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” –Matthew 11:29 (NIV)

The world is in crisis. It’s been there before and will likely be there again, but this is the first worldwide crisis I’ve ever lived through, and it’s...a lot. 

If you, like me, have a high-risk household, you’ve probably been socially isolating. I haven’t seen the inside of anything other than my house, Costco, and my workplace since March. And that last one has been infrequent. I work from home now with my youngest son’s desk next to mine in a work/school amalgamation that has sometimes been challenging, sometimes quite wonderful.

Between politics, social upheaval, and a deadly pandemic, it’s downright fractious in our country right now, even outside a high-risk bubble. Folks are hot-tempered, and shouty, even those of us who claim a saving faith in Jesus Christ. It’s not good. I’ve been thinking a lot about how to live through this mess of existential dread, stress, and difficulty. When faced daily with a new challenge, I keep thinking of how being a Christian must inform my choices and guide my actions. “Jesus take the wheel” is a fine saying, but what does that truly look like in real life?

We need to start with who Jesus is and what He wants from us. The verse above sums it up for me. Jesus is the Son of God, but He’s also humble in heart and gentle. When we give over our lives to Him, we find rest (not more work, more struggle, more strife). Our job is to be as like Him as possible. Over and over, the New Testament calls us to humble ourselves, live in peace, be patient with our brothers and sisters, bear one another’s burden in love. This is what God wants from us. He wants our love for one another to stand out, to show that we are His. “Agape” in the Greek of the New Testament’s writers, means a non-reciprocal, giving love that doesn’t expect anything back. That’s how God loves us, and that’s how He calls us to love others.

What does that look like in real life? For me, it’s a reminder to be patient with others, to be humble, and when tempted to add my voice to the cacophony, to turn off my computer and put down my phone. I have no business putting that out in the world. As a Christian, I have a reason to resist rising to every insult, holding a grudge, or taking offense. Every moment that I walk through this world, I am a witness for Jesus Christ. I need to live my life in a way that tells others that I am under Jesus’ yoke.

When it gets hard, I try to reach for that peace. The peace of knowing that God is provident and whatever happens, it will be for His Glory and that He will be with me through every second of it. Jesus has not abandoned us to work it out for ourselves. We have Scripture and the Holy Spirit to guide us. Prayer is a wonder. 

If you’re struggling right now, and so many of us are, reach out and take hold of the tools that God has given us to dig us out of the deepest of pits. Unburden your heart, trust that God has heard you and that whatever the answer, He is with you. 

You’re not alone, Christian. There are millions of us on this planet with you. 

I’ll be praying for you.

Author Bio:

Christa MacDonald is a 2017 ACFW Carol Award finalist for contemporary Christian fiction. 

A native New Englander, she was inspired by her travels through the north woods of Maine to write The Broken Trail, which would become the first in the Sweet River Redemption series published by Mountain Brook Ink.

Christa's writing focuses on the real-life challenges of the modern world, love’s sometimes crooked path, and the redemptive power of Grace.

When not working or writing Christa can be found ferrying her kids around, reading, or attempting something crafty.

She and her husband live with their three kids, two cats, and one dog along the coast of New England. Connect with Christa at

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