Whenever we are having a family meal, my Dad likes to make the same joke. First he lets everyone know he is the patriarch. Then when we try to let him serve first, he waves everyone ahead and says he is practicing humility! We always get a good laugh from it.
St. Mary Magdalen dei Pazzi says, “This is the remedy to fix my gaze on You, Incarnate Word, hanging on the Cross. As soon as You see a humble soul looking at You in this way, You are quickly moved to look at it, and the effect of Your divine glance is like that of a ray of sunshine on the earth: it warms it and prepares it to bring forth fruit. This is the way You act, O divine Word, who by the light of Your glance, drain my soul of all its pride, and consume it in Your fire. No one can acquire humility if he does not fix his gaze on You, O Word, on the Cross.”
To humble self means rooting out all independence, pride and will. This is what we think of when we hear the words, meek of heart. Antonyms of humble include proud, rude and exalted. We think of people who are arrogant, unkind and selfish.
There was a time when I thought humility meant wimpy. Now I know, to be humble takes strength and courage. It is a discipline. There we see disciple in discipline. We find freedom in discipline. Otherwise we are slaves to our vices.
St. Mary Magdalen dei Pazzi reminds us that Our Lord shines upon the welcoming and humble. He warms these hearts with His Divine Mercy. And from these hearts springs forth the fruits of His love.
Lord, help me root out self. I can’t do it alone, I need Your strength. Amen