Our real need is Humility


We need, today, to learn another lesson: that Christ calls us to be servants of one another, and that this service will be a most blessed one, a new and fuller liberty from sin and self. At first it may appear hard. But, if once we learn that to be nothing before God is the glory of the creature, the spirit of Jesus, the joy of heaven, we shall welcome with our whole heart the discipline we may have in serving even those who trouble us.

Life seems like a contradiction at times. God grants everyone unique personalities and talents. This is wonderful, as we need all kinds of talents to help our families and communities to function and to grow. We need good mothers and fathers, teachers, nurses, those who can farm the land, and the list goes on.

The contradiction is when we consider how much we should publicize our successes. In some environments it is the way to get a promotion in higher education. As an example, there is a tradition of letting your peers and administrators know about your success. How can you do so and yet remain “a humble servant?”

We have the example of Christ to follow. Scripture tells us that Christ was the son of God. He did not flaunt His talents and abilities before others. He used these abilities for others, not for Himself and always gave recognition to His Father in heaven.

As Christians, each of us has a unique function to accomplish, carrying out the mission of Christ. Let us do so willingly, with a joyful heart and always to give honor to our Father.

This what Jesus said to the disciples who were thinking of being great in the Kingdom, and of sitting on His right hand and His left.  Seek not; ask not for exaltation; that is God’s work. Jesus means this, we all know. Just as water ever seeks and fills the lowest place, so the moment God finds the creature abased and empty, in flows His glory and power. It is godlike, however, to humble ourselves, to become servants of all! Lets us study the words we have been given, until our hearts are filled with the one thought: my real need is humility. Here is the path to the higher life: down, lower down!

The good that we do, the ways we serve each other, all the ways we give of ourselves and our gifts – we do this not in expectation of some reward, but because this is now our nature. This is who we are, transformed in Christ! Again, somewhere along the way we turned this around to thinking we will like ourselves better, and feel better about ourselves, if we act in the ways that get us the rewards of recognition, praise, status, a raise, or whatever else we think motivates us. Our transformed life is the reward! It is not external to us, not a fleeting feeling or transient title or trophy.

The Saints, like St. Frances Xavier Cabrini whose life we celebrate today, kept their eyes on God, not their own successes and failure. It is that kind of focus that allows us to continue, day after day through the challenges of life and not be discouraged, but be continually converted and transformed. As we hold our gaze on Christ, not our own footsteps, our hearts are also transformed.


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