As 2022 moves on, be praying for the Commission on General Conference, that they will decide to go ahead with General Conference this summer, as planned, and that it won’t be postponed yet again!
As a way to be praying, we are sharing the Wesleyan Covenant Association’s Prayer Guide each month. We encourage you to use this guide in your prayer time, to focus with other faithful United Methodists around the world. This month’s guide is written by Maxie Dunnam.
March: The Way of Meekness and Humility
By Maxie Dunnam
I put meekness and humility together as I reflect on the Way of the Kingdom. It is difficult to talk about one without referring to the other.
The word “kingdom” easily elicits thoughts about territory. Clearly Jesus is not talking about earthly territory in his third beatitude, “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. This is about a quality of life on earth, about relationship and community. As Christians, all that Christ accomplished through his life, death and resurrection is our inheritance. In Romans 8, Paul says we are “heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ.” Our inheritance is the inexhaustible power of the Holy Spirit, sufficient for every situation.
That pride is the root of original sin is clearly witnessed in Adam and Eve. Their sin is our sin: the need to be “in charge,” to control our own destiny. God told them they could enjoy the abundance of the Garden of Eden with one exception: they were not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Genesis 2:17). They wanted to know everything. Wanting to be like God without surrendering their autonomy, they ate the forbidden fruit.
It is only when we become humble and give up our self-centered attempt to run our lives that we become joint heirs with Christ and inherit the earth.
The supreme reality for Paul was the union of the believer with his Lord. But the fact is this union and all that union with Christ means, is not yet realized. Our position and relation to Christ is that we are loved, accepted, forgiven. We are the partakers of a new life. But all of this is not yet fully worked out in our experience. Someone expressed it in a beautiful image: “Believers were like immigrants to a new country, not yet completely habituated to its ways of life. They had accepted citizenship in a new world and must now learn to live in it.”
Being humble and meek is the dynamic of learning to live as citizens of a new land. Accepting this reality, Paul concluded, “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience” (Colossians 3:12 NIV). Our stereotypical thoughts of humility and meekness as cowardly weakness, being without passion, lack of spirit and purpose, are shattered when we look at Jesus. There was nothing weak and colorless about him. Obedience was the essence of his life. Not only in Gethsemane where it reached a pinnacle of commitment, but throughout Jesus’ life, his constant prayer was, “Not my will but thine be done.”
A Suggested Pattern of Prayer
As you pray through the following prayer points, invite the presence of the Lord into your time of prayer. Each day’s prompt has a Scripture reference for you to pray through. As you pray allow time to also listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying to you. When you have prayed through the Scripture and prayer point, you may be led to add your own prayers. Pray and consider what action steps might you take in response to the Lord’s leading. Repeat this prayer pattern weekly for the month.
Daily Prayer Points and Scripture for Reflection
Sunday: With joyful prayer, claim your place in God’s creation: “in the image of God” (Genesis 1:26-27).
Monday: Pray through Jesus’ affirmation of our worth when he contrasted our value to that of a sparrow (Matthew 10:29-31).
Tuesday: Pray through our distorted practice of devaluing ourselves because we perceive humility as self-depreciation and self-denial (Psalm 22:6-8).
Wednesday: Pray through whether, in your relationship and actions with others, your “loving” is seeking praise (John 12:42-43).
Thursday: Pray for wisdom in balancing claiming your strength while knowing and acknowledging your weakness (Romans 12:3-8).
Friday: Examine the way we fail to perceive the difference between loving self and self-love (Matthew 19:16-18).
Saturday: Pray into God’s call to humility (2 Chronicles 7:11-14).
Meekness does not mean weakness. The meekness Jesus is talking about means total dedication to God’s plan. The meek are strong and are not intimidated because they know who they are. They are dependent upon the power of the Holy Spirit to be and do what God wants them to be and do in the world