“Then the Lord opened the donkey’s mouth, and it said to Balaam, ‘What have I done to you to make you beat me these three times?’ Balaam answered the donkey, ‘You have made a fool of me! If only I had a sword in my hand, I would kill you right now.’ The donkey said to Balaam, ‘Am I not your own donkey, which you have always ridden, to this day? Have I been in the habit of doing this to you?’”

– Numbers 22:28-30

Donkeys were common in Biblical times and were used frequently as transportation. Though we tend to think of horses being the animal of choice for warriors and kings, donkeys were commonly known to transport judges and high ranking officials, especially in the Old Testament. Though certainly not despised, these low profile animals were a sign of humility, which is why Jesus rode one into Jerusalem the week of His crucifixion. Based on this information, who are the donkeys in our lives? I assert that they are the ones common to us — those from whom we hear the most frequently and with whom we “do life” day after day. People like our parents, our spouses, our siblings, or our best friend. Though these individuals may start out on a “high horse,” or a pedestal we place them on, before long, their input becomes common and we disregard what they have to say, especially when we become aware of their shortcomings and they become aware of ours. 

I want to encourage you with that fact that God puts people in your life who annoy you, my friend, and yet they are supposed to be there. Although you need to have boundaries and be okay saying no when they overstep your limits, you also need to make sure that your ego is in check. Don’t devalue or disregard the input of someone whose voice you hear frequently just because they are far from perfect. As much as you want to travel exclusively with high horses, their elevation makes you prone to a fall; look up to them but remember that your donkeys wait in the wings to walk the road of life in humble friendship.


Jesus, humble my heart and give me ears that are willing to hear from the donkeys in my life, even when they don’t flatter my ego.


Have you ever disregarded the input of a donkey because you were aware of their shortcomings?

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