On a recent visit to San Francisco, I had the opportunity to walk the hills, see the sights, and observe the crowds. As I made my way back to the hotel, I observed a tourist – a nicely dressed man – standing beside a homeless man who appeared to be asleep, spilling over into a busy street. He gently nudged the sleeper, wanting to help him move away from traffic. The sleeper did not budge so the tourist stood in the road to protect the man from passing traffic. He then pulled out his cell phone and called for help.
I am a faith-writer. I observe and pray, asking God to give wisdom, direction, comfort, provision. And I listen. I listen for the promptings of God and I listen to the people around me. Why did I stay and watch the activities of this tourist? Glued to the sidewalk, watching, and unable to move, I silently prayed for the two men from different walks of life. I prayed for the emergency response team and for the crowd that was gathering to watch.
The emergency team arrived. Unable to awaken him, they gave oxygen and CPR. The sleeping man was pronounced dead. The tourist lowered his head in sadness and watched as the sleeper was placed on a gurney and taken away.
In the streets of San Francisco, I witnessed the actions and humility of a Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37). A man from financial means who humbled himself to care for one in need, showing dignity and concern to someone who probably would not think he deserved such kindness.
The Role of Humility
Webster’s Dictionary defines humility as freedom from pride or arrogance. Can you see the humility shown in the story above? Would you have done the same for the sleeper?
When pride is present and dictates our life, we miss out on much of what God desires to show and teach us. To defeat pride and lead a humble lifestyle is a battle in itself. First, recognize pride in your life; second, quiet the pride – daily and repeatedly; and third, recognize and acknowledge Jesus Christ as Savior and guide. I found a great article, “Pride Will Kill You – 10 Practical Ways to Kill it First.”
The opposite of pride is humility. With humility comes wisdom, unity, contentment, revelation and freedom. When we surrender our pride to humility, we have the advantage. See what scripture says about the role of humility in our life:
- The Lord guides the humble in what is right and teaches them His way. Psalm 25:9
- The Lord sustains the humble but casts the wicked to the ground. Psalm 147:6
- For the Lord takes delight in his people; he crowns the humble with victory. Psalm 149:4
- The humble will rejoice in the Lord; the needy will rejoice in the Holy One of Israel. Isaiah 29:19
- Those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted. Matthew 23:12
- “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.” James 4:6
- Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. I Peter 5:6
Daily, we have an opportunity to grow and become all God purposed us to be! Let’s stay steady on the journey.
There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man;
true nobility is being superior to your former self.