I really like this one. George Washington
Carver, the botanist who developed hundreds
of useful products from the peanut (including
the peanut butter!) once remarked: "When
I was young, I said to God, 'God, tell me
the mystery of the universe.' But God answered,
'That knowledge is reserved for me alone.'
So I said, 'God, tell me the mystery of the
peanut.' Then God said, 'Well, George, that's
more nearly your size.' And he told me."
Rosa Parks died very recently. She was an
unassuming, modest Afro-American seamstress.
She will be remembered in history as the
woman who one day in 1955 in a bus in Alabama,
refused to stand up for a white man, thus
sparking a massive undercurrent that changed
US culture. In her book Quiet Faith, she
wrote. "As a child I learned to trust
in God and not to be afraid. I have always
felt comforted by reading the Psalms, especially
Psalm 23 (The Lord is my Shepherd; there
is nothing I shall want) and 27 (The Lord
is my light and my salvation-whom shall I
Humility is a winner, while pride is a loser.
Former heavy-weight boxer James (Quick) Tillis
is a cowboy from Oklahoma who fought out
of Chicago in the early 1980s. He still remembers
his first day in the Windy City after his
arrival from Tulsa. "I got off the bus
with two cardboard suitcases under by arms
in downtown Chicago and stopped in front
of the Sears Tower. I put my suitcases down,
and I looked up at the Tower and I said to
myself, 'I'm going to conquer Chicago.' When
I looked down, the suitcases were gone."
The Bible says it. "Pride goes before
destruction, and a haughty spirit before
stumbling" (Proverbs 16:18). And at
least three times (Psalms, Peter and James)
the Word of God repeats the assertion that
"God is opposed to the proud, but gives
grace to the humble".
Humility is not stupidity. Saint Teresa used
to say that a humble person is a person who
walks in truth. And what is truth? The truth
about is that we are weak, broken beings
loved by a God who is crazy about us!
The problem is that we forget this and act
many times like … balloons. Balloons are
nice toys, very colorful and bright on the
outside. On the inside however they are empty.
We also get all puffed up with our own importance.
We think we are great and we expect everyone
else to think so too. Maybe it is because
we are so good looking, or maybe it is because
we are so smart. Maybe we are really good
in sports, or perhaps we are the best one
at our line of work. Sooner or later, however
if we keep getting puffed up with our own
importance, something will happen to us that
will burst our balloon!
The Bible teaches us that if we are too proud
and think too highly of ourselves, we are
headed for a fall. On the other hand, if
we are humble, and realize that it is through
God's strength that we are able to do great
things, we will be given a place of honor
in the kingdom of God.
One of the most beautiful paragraphs that
I read about humility comes from the Metropolitan
Anthony of Sourozh. Listen to it. "Some
of you may remember that the word 'humility'
comes from the Latin humus, the fertile ground.
Humility is not a condition which we try
to ape by saying that we are unworthy, that
we are not as good as others imagine us to
be - if they do. Humility is a condition
of the earth, lying completely open and surrendered:
the earth which is open to all actions, of
mankind, of the rain, accepting the refuse
and accepting the furrow and bringing fruit,
surrendered, offered and given. This is the
essence of humility and this is the kind
of humility which we see in the Mother of
Winston Churchill was once asked, "Doesn't
it thrill you to know that every time you
make a speech, the hall is packed to overflowing?"
"It's quite flattering," replied
Sir Winston. "But whenever I feel that
way, I always remember that if instead of
making a political speech I was being hanged,
the crowd would be twice as big!"
God wisely designed the human body so that
we can neither pat our own backs nor kick
ourselves too easily.
Sadhu Sundar Singh was a very famous Indian
Hindu who converted to Christianity. After
a tour in Europe where he was acclaimed for
his wisdom and wit, friends asked him whether
this entire accolade does not do him any
harm. His answer was beautiful "No,
he said. The donkey went into Jerusalem,
and they put garments on the ground before
him. He was not proud. He knew it was not
done to honor him, but for Jesus, who was
sitting on his back. When people honor me,
I know it is not me, but the Lord, who does
the job." We are just the donkey carrying
Jesus. Remember that!
Be humble or you'll stumble!
(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission
hereby granted for any non-commercial
provided that the content is unaltered
its original state, if this copyright