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  • Writer's pictureTerri

A Humble Spirit

My youngest child loves to create acronyms, especially funny ones. Lately, they have all been about me. The last couple of days she has been calling me “MAP.” This same daughter has told me for years that she wants to be just like me. She is always saying that we are "twins."


This sweetheart has had a long “I want to be like Mommy” phase. I was shocked last night when she told me that she didn’t want to be just like me anymore. I’ll admit. It hurt my ego. She’s growing up too fast, my heart protested.


Terri Hitt and Terri's daughter Brooklyn holding hands and looking at one another, humble mother-daughter duo

“Oh, no,” I said to her. “We’re not twins anymore?”


“No,” she said without a trace of remorse.


“Why not?” I asked.


“Mommy’s work all the time. I don’t want to.”


She laughs, but I immediately feel “Mom Guilt.”


I don’t want her to grow up thinking all I do is work around the house. Soothing my ego, I remind her that I make time to play with her every single day, share a Bible study together, then we spend the day together in homeschool with a lot of intentional interactions.


He response and attitude proved that she's good with that. In fact, she’s not guilting me with the acronym she chose for me. I remind myself that having only lived a normal family life for the last few years, she is simply making observations and voicing her feelings.

Remember that acronym she's calling me? MAP. Know what she says it stands for?


“Mommy’s A Peasant.”


As she continued teasing and laughing about me being "MAP," the Holy Spirit gave me the best response for her.


“Thank you,” I said.


“What?” she asked.


“You said I’m a peasant, right?”


“Yes,” she said.


“You said I do things for the family all day?”


“Yes.”


“Think about Jesus,” I reminded her. “I’m not nearly close enough to His character,” I said, “But if Jesus came to serve and not be served, I think I can try to do the same for my family with a humble spirit.”


Her teasing stopped. She sat up, facing me with full attention and interest.


Brooklyn sitting down on wooden stool

We discussed Jesus and why He came to live on the earth among us. She’s heard most of what I said before, but began listening with a new perspective. Fresh thoughts and a different view gave life to the old Biblical tales.


So far today she hasn’t called me a peasant, but she has designed an acronym for herself. It’s PAP. Her nickname is Peanut, and she now says, “Peanut’s a peasant.” In fact, she has now christened her Daddy as “DAP” and her sister as “MAP,” as well.


Philippians 2:1-11 says, “So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.


How great our God is that He chooses to gift us with recognizable ways to draw ourselves and others to Him. How merciful is He that in our fallen nature where ego threatens to rule at every turn, the Holy Spirit lives inside those of us who love Him. He enables us to hear His quiet truths and remember that life is not about us. All that we do should lift Him toward the glory and honor He is due. May He increase and I decrease.


Terri Hitt Christian parenting coach looking at Bible

Proverbs 16:18 says, “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.”


My goodness. I love the way God shows me where my ego gets in the way. Why did my identity feel bruised when my daughter told me that I worked a lot?


I know the answer. It's because I try so hard to be there for her. I make sure we play since she didn’t have time in the important formative years. I purposely create opportunities to grow our bonds with each other. But the key point to remember is that none of it would be possible without the work of my Heavenly Father allowing the good works to come to fruition. He is the One guiding my spirit to desire what to do with her. He is also the One forming the bonding and attachment that occurs.


As I submit to Him and rely on His promptings, He freely flows into our lives. Because of Him, instead of feeling a little wounded with the opinion she voiced, I rejoice that she shares her thoughts so openly. I know that her feelings are not about me. I don't want my personal thoughts or feelings to twist what she shares with me. I know how easily emotions can distort truth. I want to really absorb what she is trying to communicate.


Have you ever been humbled by the Lord? I have. Many times.


Unfortunately, I’ve been forced to learn hard lessons in the area of humility. Especially in the areas I felt most competent or talented. The areas in which God blesses are sometimes our most vulnerable spots. It’s easier for us to be deceived and think that we can handle something on our own. We tend to look to Him less, until we learn lessons in humility the hard way and learn where our true strength lies. In Him.


James 4:10 says, “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will lift you up.”


God cares for, protects, and lifts the humble. “Oh, Lord, please humble me so that I may be cared for and lifted closer as You desire.” Help me possess a humble spirit in my duties as "MAP" in Your eyes and the eyes of my family as we serve and shine you together in the godly ways You desire.


1 Peter 5:6-7 says, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time He may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you.”


Parenting coach Terri Hitt sitting on step stool

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