Do not put yourself forward in the King’s presence or stand in the place of the great, for it is better to told, “Come up here,” than to be put lower in the presence of a noble.
Proverbs 25:6 – 7
We so often presume too much, taking the place of greatness uninvited. Our worth inestimable in our own eyes, we saunter to the head of the table, secure in the knowledge we belong in exalted company.
Unfortunately, that is most often not the case. How humiliating, to vacate the place we’ve usurped, moving below the salt as everyone watches.
Much better to willingly take the lower position, not out of expectation of being called up, but in the honest belief that there are others more worthy of honor, or whose needs should come first. Why is it that we so easily forget the example we have been given, and are admonished to follow?
Do nothing from rivalry 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 made himself nothing, 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.
Phil 2:3-11 (ESV)