The Human Doormat Print E-mail



“If you've gotten anything  at all out of following Christ, if His love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care — then do me a favor; Agree with each other, love each other, be deep spirited friends. Don't push your way to the front; don't sweet-talk your way to the top. Put yourself aside, and help each other get ahead.  Don't be obsessed with getting your own advantage. Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.

Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of Himself. He had equal status with God but didn't think so much of Himself that he had to cling to the advantage of that status no matter what. No not at. When the time came, He set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human!... He didn't claim special privileges. Instead, he lived a selfless, obedient life and then died a selfless, obedient death—and the worst kind of death at that—a crucifixion.” {The Message}

Philippians 2:1-8


Smack—the clap of cheek and hand bounced off the wall of men standing in a circle with all eyes fixed on the target in the middle.


Smack—again the chilling sound of skin against skin bounced.


“Who was that?  If you are who you are out there telling everyone you are, you could tell us.”


“Hit him again, we want to look like we did our job when he goes to trial tomorrow.”


 The next day as they stood the beaten man in front of the crowd the people began to chant his name, but not in outrage at what was happening to the innocent man, oh no. They demanded his death. An innocent man put to death; a guilty man set free.


Can you imagine the humility it took for Jesus to stand there and look like a fraud?


“You saved so many, raised men from the dead, healed the sick, but now look at you, you can't even get out of this.  A fraud just like all the others.”


But that wasn't all, by the end of the day they had him up on a cross for the world to see—to see His humanity more than that to see His humility.


For some reason we've let the world, our friends, or maybe our pride—I'm not sure which—sway us into thinking that being a doormat is bad; that putting others first some how messes with all the Christian freedom Christ gave us on the cross. 


I get so demanding and frustrated especially at home.  My mom and I were talking one day and I was telling her how I felt like people had been taking advantage of me and how it seemed like my rights were being violated.  I felt like I was being walked all over just like a doormat!  It was happening at home and now at work too.  Then she just kind of looked at me said something that totally blew me away.


“The Lord Jesus Christ was the biggest doormat of all.  He hung on the cross for the whole world to wipe their sinful feet on.”


Wow I had never thought of that before.  Here I was complaining about little stuff like my space, my rights, my gas money, when He had been the biggest doormat of all for the whole world to walk all over with their muddy, sinful feet.  If a servant isn't any greater than his master, then who was I to think that I could demand to be more than a human doormat?


I love the line in this song that says, “Stepping stones were meant to be walked on.”  That's what we are—stepping stones to Jesus.


Humility—having or showing consciousness of one’s short-comings. Lower in condition or rank to lower in pride.


That's Webster definition of humility.  Basically it's saying humility is exemplified by someone who understands that others are better than they are and lives it out by giving others higher "rank" or better place in the lunch line, a better seat in the car, a better half of the cookie, better hours at work (small things but you get my point).


Humility is an others-before-me mindset.


Self-image and self-love have become really popular in a lot of churches. What? Show me that in Scripture.  I see love for your enemies, I see love for your neighbor, I see love for the needy, I see "build each other up," but nowhere do I see Jesus advocating self-love or “here are the seven steps to build a better self-image.”


I'm not advocating self-hate, neither did Jesus, but if you look in verse 3 of Philippians 2, Paul says, “Forget about yourself long enough to lend a helping hand.” And in verse 2, “Don't be obsessed with getting your own way!”


We are a nation, a culture, who is obsessed with our image, our rights, our way. But Jesus showed us someone who forgot about Himself long enough to lend us a helping hand out of hell's flames. Scripture gives us a glowing example to follow in a guy named Barnabas. He was a guy who was obsessed with helping others, addicted to loving on others. What a way to be described!


So I'll finish with thisyour obsession should be the same Jesus had. His obsession was with putting others first.


“How far should I go?”


Jesus lived with the mindset of a slave (vs. 7), “Taking on the form of a bond servant” (the lowliest you could get.)   But He didn't stop there.  He went to the point of death, and not just death as verse 8 put it, but “Death on a cross.”  So I can't really see you going too far in your service of others.


He was selfless so He wasn't all taken up with Himself, His wants, His way, His rights, His needs, BUT He was a slave all taken up and all consumed with obedience to His Father and that is what brought His humble lifestyle.


Do we love Him enough to obey Him?


“He who has my commandments and obeys them is the one who loves Me” (John 14:21).


So the two obsessions I challenge you to have:

            1) an obsession with loving others

2) an obsession with obedience to God


The result?  Humility. You're aim?  To become a human doormat. The purpose?  To glorify God.