God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.
My most humiliating experience ever was the day I addressed the faculty, students, and friends of a seminary on its fifty-year anniversary. I approached the lectern with my manuscript in hand and looked out on a vast crowd, but my eye fell on the distinguished professors seated in the front row, garbed in academic gowns and looking very serious. I immediately took leave of my senses. My mouth dried up and detached itself from my brain. I fumbled the first few sentences and then I began to improvise. Since I had no idea where I was in my lecture, I began frantically turning pages, while talking a line of nonsense that baffled everyone. Somehow I made it through, crept back to my chair, and stared at the floor. I wanted to die.
However, I learned that humiliation can be a good thing if it leads to humility, for this is the key that opens God’s heart. The Scriptures say, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble” (James 4:6). He showers the humble with grace. God Himself said, “These are the ones I look on with favor: those who are humble and contrite in spirit, and who tremble at my word” (Isaiah 66:2). As we humble ourselves before God, He lifts us up (James 4:10).
Humiliation and shame can bring us to God for His shaping. When we fall, we have fallen into His hands.