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Saturday, August 25, 2018

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St. Louis
St. Joseph Calasanz

Ezekiel 43:1-7
Psalm 85:9-14
Matthew 23:1-12

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humility and reality

"Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled, but whoever humbles himself shall be exalted." —Matthew 23:12

If we don't humble ourselves, the Lord will do it for us. We can either start off humbled and end up exalted, or start off exalted and end up humbled. Obviously, it behooves us to humble ourselves now. Yet to do this we must know what humility is.

Humility is not humiliation. True humility is not putting ourselves down but facing reality. The word "humility" derives from the root word meaning "earth." Humility is being "down-to-earth," realistic. Reality is that we are "earthen vessels" (2 Cor 4:7). We are weak, but He is strong. We cannot save ourselves, no matter how hard we try (Ps 49:8; Is 26:18). Reality is that we are utterly dependent on Jesus for life and eternal life. Reality is that we can trust our heavenly Father completely. He is perfectly faithful. Reality is that we are temples of the Holy Spirit. By faith, we can claim power from on high (Lk 24:49).

Therefore, humility is facing the reality that we can't control our own lives and that we don't have to provide for ourselves. We can be different from others, even vulnerable, because we have a loving Father. We can live simply because God will take care of us. We can live boldly, freely, and with purity because we have a power within us that is from above us: the power of the Spirit. Humility is living in the realities of holiness, simplicity, and making ourselves vulnerable to persecution. Let us humble ourselves.

Prayer:  Father, I decide to humble myself. I ask for the grace to have more simplicity and less timidity.

Promise:  "There I saw the glory of the God of Israel coming from the east. I heard a sound like the roaring of many waters, and the earth shone with His glory." —Ez 43:2

Praise:  Though an earthly king, St. Louis was renowned for his concern for the poor. Each day, he invited thirteen of them to eat with him.

Rescript:  †Most Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Auxiliary Bishop, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 15, 2017

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