24 Jan Day 20: Associate with the Lowly
Brian and Esther Nolton
Do not be haughty but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight (Romans 12:16).
Paul calls believers not to be self-righteous, but to be gentle with those in need or those you think are of lower circumstance than yourself. In Philippians, he reiterates, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves” (2:3). True association with the lowly abandons all arrogance, self-righteousness, and elitism that is contrary to how God designed His church.
God calls us to love one another as Jesus loves us (John 13:34). He calls us to follow Jesus’ example, who associated Himself with the lowly (us!) by lowering Himself to the point of a servant and being born in the likeness of men (Phil. 2:7). There are no qualifications in His command. This kind of love is impartial and without judgment (Romans 2:11). For God says, “Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me” (Matthew 25:40).
- Ask the Lord to show you times in your life where you can give impartial love to others. Maybe they are people you encounter regularly, maybe it was someone who walked by on the street. Pray that God would lead you to be impartial and open your heart to associate with those people.
- Ask the Lord to remind you of times in which you have been shown mercy and grace when you were “lowly”. Thank God for His love, forgiveness, and provision in such a time. Pray that God will use you to reflect that kind of love in another’s time of need.
- God was intentional about placing us in an area where the community is in great need, among people others might consider lowly. Imagine how we can make an impact on the community if we associate with the lowly and love them as Jesus loves us. Pray that God provides us with the courage and ability to serve those in and around our church.
- Keep your eyes open to what God is trying to show you, even if it means stepping outside of your comfort zone. When you are tempted to disassociate with others, consider how God might be using you to share His light in their presence instead of dimming it (Matthew 5:16).