Whoever exalts himself will be humbled,
and the one who humbles himself will be exalted. (Lk 18:14b)
It is a virtue that is woefully absent in this world of ours.
So many people think that they are better than everyone else.
They not only think that they are better, they treat other people according to their beliefs. In other words, they treat others poorly.
Today’s Gospel is a perfect example of that.
We heard of a Pharisee standing proud in the temple, exalting himself, and denigrating a tax collector.
The tax collector, on the other hand, stood off in the distance, as far back in the temple as he could, not even raising his eyes, and beating his breast while saying, “O God, be merciful to me, a sinner.”
That was the person who went home justified, not the arrogant Pharisee.
When we think we are the best in the world, we forget about God. We place ourselves in the stead of God in all sorts of ways. We begin not only to inflate ourselves but to look down upon others. That practice will not get us anywhere in the eyes of God.
Oh, sure. It may get us great places here on earth. But here on earth is not our ultimate goal. It is merely a waiting place until God calls us. And when He does, we must be ready to make an accounting of ourselves.
None of us are better than God.
We would best remember that and quit acting as if we were.
FAITH ACTION: Pray for humility this day.
O God, who resists the proud, and gives grace
to the humble: grant me the virtue of true humility,
where of Your Only-begotten son showed in Himself a
pattern for Your faithful; that I may never by my
pride provoke Your anger, but rather by my meekness
receive the riches of Your grace.