Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2:5-11
Here comes one of the most important passages in the Bible, commonly known “kenosis.” Imagine if you had the same attitude that was in Christ Jesus. Apparently it’s possible, because Paul calls for the Philippians to possess it! I am slightly facetious in saying this.
We sit around wishing we had the “lives of the rich and famous,” yet we can acquire the key characteristic of Jesus Christ our Lord; only it’s humility!
We’d normally opt for his power like James and John, who requested permission to call down fire from heaven (Luke 9:54). This is the exact point. Christ holstered all of his power while on earth–his miracles being the exceptions. He could have rained down all manner of retribution on his enemies, but didn’t, choosing instead to momentarily shed his rights and privileges to become a bond-servant.
We’ve got the same kind of firepower residing in us, and he wants us to use it being humble. James and John–maybe like us–were thinking more along the lines of sitting on the Lord’s right hand and left (Mark 10:37).
Truth is, it’ll take all the power we (he on our behalf) can muster to accomplish this feat–to be humble! That’s why our Lord was the only one who was able to pull it off.
But note, we only need to possess the Lord’s attitude. It’s the mindset He’s after.
We may not be an elite athlete, but we can still think, and act, like one.