“Nothing beats a humble heart.” This was the constant reminder of my father to me, especially when I was still engaged in the world of politics. I often enjoyed the perks and privileges associated with the public office I held. I was often invited as a resource speaker at different events, like graduation ceremonies, meetings of different community organizations, general assemblies and others. I was always overwhelmed by praise and kind words from other people, especially after I accomplished projects and programs for the community. As such, pride was always a temptation for me. My father would often remind me that leaders usually fall into that temptation, and so I must always remind myself to become a humble servant of the people. According to him, status brings power, and power often produces pride.
In today’s Gospel, Jesus reminds us that he who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted. He emphasized how humility will take us to higher places than putting ourselves on the platform.
As a priest-in-process, I must always remember that humility is essential for everyone who wants to share and proclaim the mercy and love of God. We can only proclaim mercy and love when we recognize that we are also loved and forgiven by our Lord Jesus Christ. It is the first and most important step toward a life of holiness. Our attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus, who, being in the very nature God, “did not consider equality with God something to be grasped but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness” (Phil. 2:6).
By: Sem. Arjay A. Ligamzon
Luke 14:1, 7-14
On a sabbath Jesus went to dine
at the home of one of the leading Pharisees,
and the people there were observing him carefully.
He told a parable to those who had been invited,
noticing how they were choosing the places of honor at the table.
“When you are invited by someone to a wedding banquet,
do not recline at table in the place of honor.
A more distinguished guest than you may have been invited by him,
and the host who invited both of you may approach you and say,
‘Give your place to this man,’
and then you would proceed with embarrassment
to take the lowest place.
Rather, when you are invited,
go and take the lowest place
so that when the host comes to you he may say,
‘My friend, move up to a higher position.’
Then you will enjoy the esteem of your companions at the table.
For every one who exalts himself will be humbled,
but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.”
Then he said to the host who invited him,
“When you hold a lunch or a dinner,
do not invite your friends or your brothers
or your relatives or your wealthy neighbors,
in case they may invite you back and you have repayment.
Rather, when you hold a banquet,
invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind;
blessed indeed will you be because of their inability to repay you.
For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”