Saturday, November 8, 2008

Daily Office Reflection: On Being Humble

Psalms 75, 76 * 23, 27; Ecclesiasticus 51:1-12; Revelation 18:1-14; Luke 14:1-11

I think it is human nature to want to be recognized, to want to be known, to want to remembered. I think this is true for people whether they are extroverts or introverts. There are many different methods of achieving, and degrees of attaining, this status of recognition . Jesus recognizes this innate longing in us today when he talks about being humble and taking the lower place at a banquet table until someone asks us to move to a more prominent place.

This can be very unfair to those of us who are not extraverted, who are self-aware enough to know that we don't belong "up there", who are more gracious and kind and not so self-aggrandizing. For the people who are full of themselves can take-over a group, overwhelm a party or gathering of people. We all know people like this, or have been at places where one person is dominating a conversation, gathering as much of the attention as they can to themselves. It can be very annoying when we allow a cult of personality to dominate a social gathering. It can destroy a sense of community. 

Perhaps in these kind of situations it is important for us to look around the room and draw in those who are more introverted, shy or naturally humble and exalt them, gently but firmly pushing those who hog the spotlight aside. Humbleness is an important part of being self-aware. Some people need to be regularly reminded of this fact. It can be  a difficult life lesson to learn. Teach it we must.

Copyright 2008, John F. Dwyer. All Rights Reserved.

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