the joys and mystery of humility
"My son, conduct your affairs with humility, and you will be loved." —Sirach 3:17
Decide to "conduct your affairs with humility." Decide to clothe your whole life from top to bottom in humility (see 1 Pt 5:5). Then "you will be loved more than a giver of gifts" (Sir 3:17). God will give kindness, favor, and grace to you (Sir 3:18). In addition to being loved and graced, your humility will keep you from repeatedly embarrassing yourself, for the proud often make fools of themselves (see Lk 14:9). In the early stages of humility, we receive many wonderful benefits.
As we grow in humility by repeatedly seeking the lowest place (see Lk 14:10) in life, lifestyle, conversation, relationships, employment, etc., we lose some of the fringe benefits of humility. Like Jesus, we are no longer loved in our humility but hated. In humility, we are embarrassed even to death on the cross (see Phil 2:8). Like Jesus, we even feel that we have lost God's grace (see Mt 27:46).
By God's grace and by faith, grow from the blessings of humility into the terrifying mystery of humility.
Prayer: Jesus, gentle and humble of heart, make my heart like Yours (Mt 11:29).
Promise: "For everyone who exalts himself shall be humbled and he who humbles himself shall be exalted." —Lk 14:11
Praise: Praise be to the risen "Jesus, the Mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood which speaks more eloquently than that of Abel" (Heb 12:24). Alleluia!
Reference: (Grow in humility by reading the Bible each day. A tape series that may help you is An Introduction to each Book of the Bible. It is thirty-two audio tapes starting with AV 21-1, Matthew and Mark, or seventeen video tapes starting with V-21.)
Nihil Obstat: Reverend Richard L. Klug, January 16, 2004
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, January 26, 2004