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Sunday, March 04, 2012

Prayer and humility, part four

Humility holds in its keeping the very life of prayer. Neither pride nor vanity can pray. Humility, though, is much more than the absence of vanity and pride. It is a positive quality, a substantial force, which energises prayer. There is no power in prayer to ascend without it. Humility springs from a lowly estimate of ourselves and of our deservings. The Pharisee prayed not, though well schooled and habituated to pray, because there was no humility in his praying. The publican prayed, though banned by the public and receiving no encouragement
from Church sentiment, because he prayed in humility. To be clothed with humility is to be clothed with a praying garment. Humility is just feeling little because we are little. Humility is realising our unworthiness because we are unworthy, the feeling and declaring ourselves sinners because we are sinners. Kneeling well becomes us as the attitude of prayer, because it betokens humility.

Humility is the first and last attribute of Christly religion, and the first and last attribute of Christly praying. There is no Christ without humility. There is no praying without humility. If thou wouldst learn well the art of praying, then learn well the lesson of humility.

This post is one of a series, taken from The Essentials of Prayer, by E. M. Bounds. Found through the Christian Classics Ethereal Library, here. The Essentials of Prayer is in the public domain. The previous post in the series is here. Thanks for reading. Read, and practice, Bounds.


i am Grateful... Kerry i am. said...

Wonderful post. 2 Chronicles 7:14 comes to my mind. Thanks for your faithfulness...

FancyHorse said...

Very thought-provoking. Humility is the opposite of pride, which is where our human natures want to take us. Humility is hard, and then, when we think we've achieved it, we become proud of having it, when we don't have it at all!

Martin LaBar said...

Thanks to you both, in (I hope) humility.