Thursday, April 25, 2013
What is humility? I've been struggling to come up with a definition. The dictionary on my computer says it's "a modest or low view of one's own importance."
That definition doesn't quite fit because I think it's important for a person to recognize her importance, that she has worth and purpose. I think she can do that and be humble at the same time.
I haven't thoroughly studied this topic, but it seems to me that Scripture conveys humility as a recognition of one's own sinfulness and that there's no such thing as one person (or group) being better than another in terms of worth. In Jesus there is no hierarchy, and humility enables a person to remember that.
I think a humble person is someone who...
- examines himself often
- apologizes when he knows he's hurt someone, whether that's physically or emotionally
- honors others even in the midst of disagreements on matters of politics, religion, etc.
- doesn't try to get back at someone who insults him
- listens to correction
- tells the truth
- is more concerned about loving and accepting others than telling them what to do
Humility is closely linked to honesty. It's about admitting faults rather than hiding them or lying as a means to protect reputation or pride. When we're honest about ourselves, we see more clearly and are better able to show mercy and compassion to others.
If I admit I'm not a humble person does that mean I'm being humble?
Or if I'm proud of being humble, what does that make me?