Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Want to become humble?

Jack Bernard’s book How to Become a Saint is quite a treasure as far as books on the Christian life go. His thoughts on humility are particularly helpful:

The downfall of attempts to become humble is that they are usually driven by the desire to become superior. . . . If you set out to get rid of pride or to develop humility you are going to fall flat on your face. If you are fortunate, you will fail at it in such a way that you can see not only that you have failed, but that you have within yourself no potential to do otherwise! The key word here is “potential.” The standard trick of pride is to protect oneself from facing reality by always claiming unrealized potential. We say to ourselves, “I could do it if only . . .” Therefore actual failures at spiritual achievement are not accepted as a true reflection of self. Before we can actually live in reality and advance in the spiritual life, we must rid ourselves of the notion that we have potential. We do not. We are spiritually bankrupt. Only deliverance from outside of ourselves will keep us out of the pit. (p. 38, 39)

Halden summarises for us

Long story short: if you find yourself desiring to become humble, there’s a good chance you’re on the wrong track. What we should desire is simply the truth. Humility is simply recognizing and living in a manner that is consistent with what is true about us. Desiring to become humble in itself is usually a sign that we are still trying to shield ourselves from truth.

1 comment:

alison said...

Thanks for posting :)