By PAT HUTCHENS, A rework of Imitation of Messiah by Thomas A. Kempis—
Vain and useless is the life of a person who puts his trust and confidence in people or things. Only the Creator deserves trust. Do not be ashamed to serve others out of your love for God and his Messiah Jesus. And don’t focus your life on how much money and things you have, whether you are poor, rich or in between. Do not trust in self either but put all your hope in God. You do your part by trusting in God and you can be sure God will do His part. He knows your heart.
Do not put your trust in what you know or who you know…unless, of course you are referring to the LORD of heaven and earth. Then you have good cause to boast of your good connections. Put one hundred percent of your trust in God. Remember, He actually resists the proud but gives grace (unmerited favor) to the humble.
It is vain to brag about how much money and possessions you have. It is vain to drop names and brag about powerful and rich friends. If you want to brag, brag about how great and good God is. Everything in the world belongs to God and He is the one who gives a temporary portion to each one. Much more important, God desires to give Himself to you. Do not brag (even inwardly) about how strong, handsome or beautiful you are or what a good physique or figure you have. A tiny little germ or virus can take that all that away in a day – and old age waits for everyone. Do not brag about how smart you are or about your abilities. As a matter of fact, don’t brag at all because that does not please God. When you brag, it is a slap in the face of God who is the very One who blessed you with every single thing you have.
Hear these words found in Jeremiah 9:23 and 24:
Let not the wise glory in his wisdom,
Let not the mighty glory in his might,
Let not the rich glory in his riches;
but let him who glories glory in this,
That he understands and knows Me.
That I am Yahweh, exercising loving kindness,
justice, and righteousness in the earth.
For these are the things I delight in, says Yahweh.
Do not fall into a trap of thinking you are better than others, lest you become worse in God’s sight. He knows what is in everyone. Letting others know about all the good works you do is vain, even if you do them for God. Remember God looks at things from a different point of view. Man is easily deceived. What pleases man does not always please God. If you do something good, remember others do good things too. This will keep a little humility about you. It wouldn’t hurt you to think of yourself as no better than anyone. In fact, there is a real danger in thinking of oneself as above anyone. Humility brings peace. Pride leads to anger and envy, because a prideful person actually thinks he/she deserves more.
Heavenly Father, Forgive me for trusting in people and things. Forgive me for pride and bragging. Forgive me for thinking I am better than others. I turn to You, LORD. I ask You to teach me how to humble myself, how to turn from self, how to rely on You at all times. In the name of Jesus, your Messiah. Amen.
A rework of Imitation of Messiah by Brother Thomas A. Kempis