“I think she’s gotten a little too big for her britches.” Hmph! Now there’s a statement none of us would like to overhear.
That commonly used phrase means someone has been thinking a bit too highly of herself – the opposite of today’s NOT a Fruit of the Spirit: Humility. As a side note, with the current fashion trend of skinny jeans and leggings, it would probably do for all of us to make sure we’re not “a little too big” for our britches! 🙂 But I digress.
Humility is not included in the list of Fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), and I wonder if it is less a fruit and more a protective bug spray? This summer I am watching the Japanese Beetles demolish my roses, raspberries, and Rose of Sharon. I think these bugs must be a lot like pride. The roses themselves are beautiful, but the beetle sitting in the middle takes away from that. Not to mention the holey leaves and empty stems that cause you to want to divert your eyes rather than enjoy what should be beautiful. Clearly the plants are producing beauty, but it’s immediately ruined by the bugs.
So what about us? Do we let pride kind of ruin the good fruit being produced in us?
The Bible says to “clothe yourselves with humility toward one another” (1 Peter 5:5). When we are clothed with humility, the beauty of our gifts and fruit can shine through. (And if my plants were “clothed” with bug spray, their beauty would also show through!) This doesn’t mean that we must think our gifts are useless. It doesn’t mean that we are worthless. It doesn’t mean that we must remain silent. But it will mean finding our identity and worth in Christ so that we have no need to draw attention to ourselves. There is no better way to accomplish this than to spend time in the Word and prayer.
I found this helpful article by Doug Britton on what Biblical humility is and is not: Biblical Meaning of Humility. May your roses be beetle free, your life be clothed with humility, and your “britches” be just the right size!