Friday, August 22, 2008


The first time I looked up "noble" I found the definitions to be, "possessing outstanding qualities, or high birth or exalted rank, possessing very high or excellent qualities or properties, grand or impressive in appearance." When you look at these definitions it's easy to see the word noble as talking of performance, aesthetic looks, position in society, or even what family you are born into.

What do you picture when you see a noble person? Before today, I saw a king, or queen, someone with a large crown on their head. When I saw nobility this way I see power, I saw a standard that most people will never be able to achieve in their life. However, in my study today I found something enlightening that completely changed the way I looked at nobility. I found nobility is not a label given to kings, queens, high performers, or people with good looks. Nobility is a quality that can be possessed by each one of us.

In Colossians 4:2, Paul writes to a group of Christians in Colosse, "Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving." Paul orders the group to pray and when they pray be thankful, to pour out their gratitude to God. Paul writes "be vigilant in thanksgiving." The Greek definition of vigilant is, "to be sleepless." Paul was telling his people to be sleepless in their gratitude, day and night, night and day be expressing thanks and being grateful for everything God has done and provided for them.

What does this have to do with nobility? Nobility has nothing to do with position, birth right, or looks (Thank God!). Nobility has everything to do with selfless sacrifice. The most noble give up everything, including their life for the good of others. Instead of a picture of a king or queen, my picture of nobility changed to a Mother Theresa, a soldier who lost his life in war, and Jesus Christ.

Nobility is giving everything you have for the good of others. It's finding what God has blessed you with, not to hoard it, but to share it to bless others. Circumstances have nothing to do with living a life of nobility. Nobility is a choice which starts with a willingness to be sleepless in gratitude. Author Erwin McManus writes, "the singular characteristic that will determine how far we travel in our quest for nobility is gratitude."

Choose to be noble. Do not hoard your gifts, do not use them to build riches and wealth for you only. There is nothing wrong with riches and wealth and if your gift gives you this ability, then do it. However, be always living in gratitude, always be looking to give, always be looking to bless the lives of others. This is true nobility. The greatest people are not those who have everything, but those who give everything.