Saturday, October 02, 2021

Humility the Mother of All Virtues

“Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven.” 

Matthew 18:4

Everybody wants to be “somebody”. No one grows up desiring to be a “nobody”, or almost no one. Mother Teresa said she was just a little pencil in the hands of God. “He does the thinking. He does the writing. He does everything and sometimes it is really hard because it is a broken pencil and He has to sharpen it a little more.” She also said she was a little pencil in the hand of a writing God, and He was sending a love letter to the world. God was able to use this little pencil to bring love to so many sick, desperate people not only in India, but to 139 countries around the world. I cannot imagine how this funny looking little nun was able to found 760 homes, including orphanages, centers for the dying, for refugees, for the aged, the blind, alcoholics, street children, and even one 

for lepers in India. 

I believe it was because this saintly nun was humble which was why God was able to use her. She wrote, “Humility is the mother of all virtues; purity, charity and obedience. It is in being humble that our love becomes real, devoted and ardent. If you are humble nothing will touch you, neither praise nor disgrace, because you know what you are. If you are blamed you will not be discouraged. If they call you a saint you will not put yourself on a pedestal.” She just trudged on with her work, knowing it was really God moving the strings. 

While she headed the Missionaries of Charity, Mother Teresa kept this list of ways to cultivate humility for the sisters:

  1. Speak as little as possible about yourself.
  2. Keep busy with your own affairs and not those of others.
  3. Avoid curiosity (she is referring to wanting to know things that should not concern you.)
  4. Do not interfere in the affairs of others.
  5.  Accept small irritations with good humor.
  6.  Do not dwell on the faults of others.
  7. Accept censures even if unmerited.
  8. Give in to the will of others.
  9. Accept insults and injuries.
  10. Accept contempt, being forgotten and disregarded.
  11. Be courteous and delicate even when provoked by someone.
  12. Do not seek to be admired and loved.
  13. Do not protect yourself behind your own dignity.
  14. Give in, in discussions, even when you are right.
  15. Choose always the more difficult task.

Humility is difficult in the me generation where thousands of selfies are uploaded in Facebook and Instagram every minute. “Google reported that its Android devices take 93 million selfies per day, (and that’s just Android!). In one poll, 18-to-24-year-olds reported that every third photo they take is a selfie. 

We are told in different ways, “Just be yourself”, “Pursue happiness”, and we forget that selfishness produces apathy towards others and is bad for our own mental and emotional health. That is one of the reasons we have a broken world. We need more humility, a willingness to see others and a readiness to sacrifice for others, because those “others” are us. Jesus prayed, “May they be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us...”

 (John 17:2)

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I am so glad you dropped by! You are a blessing!
:^) Patsy