No One Wants to Be Uriah Heep
Therefore, humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time. —1 Peter 5:6 We talk about being humble a lot in church. We see Jesus’ example. We regard some people as humble. But I’m not sure it’s that easy to wake up one day and decide to be...humble. We may desire to be, but becoming humble is a work that God does in our hearts, through circumstances that remind us of just how human we really are.
Uriah Heep is a villainous character in Charles Dickens’ novel, David Copperfield. Known for rubbing his hands together and declaring, “I’m so ‘umble,” Uriah Heep’s name became synonymous with a hypocritically humble person. He personified false humility.
None of us intends to be a “Uriah Heep.”
But what keeps us from being humble? What did Jesus let go of? Everything that would tempt Him with pride. Position. Strength. The invulnerability He possessed as God. He allowed Himself to be broken and vulnerable.
“Leadership in the kingdom of God is from the bottom up, not a grasping, controlling, or lording it over others. It is leading out of failure and pain, questions and struggles—a serving that lets go,” writes Peter Scazzero.1
Spiritually —and emotionally—healthy people are humble, because they allow themselves to be real, to be broken, vulnerable, and to let go, because Jesus did.
- Scazzero, Peter, The Emotionally Healthy Church (Zondervan, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 2003