Devotional Reading from the Daily Common Lectionary: Luke 18: 9-14
Text: …for all who exalt themselves will be humbled and all who humble themselves will be exalted. (v. 14b)
When I was little my mother used to tell me, “If has to brag on themselves they must not be very good.” That insight has served me well over the years acting as a “governor” in not thinking of myself as better than someone else. Now, there are degrees of humility from “false humility” on one end of the scale to the “Eeyore Syndrome” on the other.* I like to think that over the years I developed a healthy sense of humility.
Today’s reading is introduced by the writer as a parable directed toward those who thought of themselves as being righteous and regarded others with contempt. They were really “self-righteous”. This isn’t the only time Jesus broached this subject. On a different occasion he said that when we are invited to a banquet that we should not presume that our seat is at the head table. We should take the lowest seat until we are moved to another. In one of his letters the apostle Paul wrote that when he gave up his “childish” ways he could better understand Faith, Hope and Love. And of the three, Love was the greatest.**
I often say that there is no one more humble than a dedicated follower of Jesus because we know how much we have been forgiven and how generous God truly is.
Lord God, throughout this day give me a humble heart; a heart that neither judges others nor looks down upon them as anything less than another one of Your precious children. Amen.
*The Eeyore Syndrome” is something I made up as I read Winnie the Pooh books to my daughters. Eeyore was a “pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey” creature who had such low self-esteem that all he would eat was thistles–the plants that no one else wanted to eat.
**I Corinthians 13: 11-13