Humbled or Humiliated

“The greatest among you will be your servant. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”  –  Jesus              (Matthew 23:11,12  NIV)

We usually draw a line between the meanings of the words humbled and humiliated. Humbled leans more toward being taken down a notch in honor, but humiliated leans more to the idea of being completely abased or shown no respect. Humiliation is normally related to shame.

As you serve people, you will find yourself tossed between being thanked and honored, and insulted and abused. Humbling yourself and not being interested in which response you get from someone you are serving will increase the possibilities of having better outcomes from your service. It is easier to receive from a humble person than a proud person. It is easier to keep serving if you are maintaining an attitude of serving Jesus by serving people. It creates space for you to be honored if you look for the seat at the lower places at the table, and it creates a space for you to be humiliated if you look for an important position there.

By humbling myself, not boasting or demanding respect, I am likely to find myself being honored by the people I serve. Not always, but likely. Still, the honor I receive for service here is nothing compared to being humbly obedient and finding the Righteous Judge happy with me on the day that He opens books about my work. To be honored by His endorsement, “Well done!” will be worth any humiliation along the way.