“When he noticed how the guests picked the places of honor at the table, he told them this parable: “When someone invites you to a wedding feast, do not take the place of honor, for a person more distinguished than you may have been invited. If so, the host who invited both of you will come and say to you, ‘Give this person your seat.’ Then, humiliated, you will have to take the least important place. But when you are invited, take the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he will say to you, ‘Friend, move up to a better place.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all the other guests. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”” Luke 14:7-11
I hope we all had a great weekend? This Bible text caught my attention on a great lesson on humility.
Jesus was at a wedding watching the guests picking their places of honor at the table. In my mind’s eye, I can see them probably scrambling for those seats to feel important.
Jesus, being an observer, decided to use a parable to get his point across. A parable is a story, whether fiction or non-fiction, to drive home a spiritual truth. So the point of the story was humility, but used a story of how it is more honorable to be invited to a place of honor than assuming that place only to be unseated by someone more important. He then ends on the note that if one exalts himself, he will be humbled. And the one who humbles himself will be exalted.
From this story, humility is not thinking of yourself less. Humility doesn’t promote inferiority complex. Anybody who has a complex is NOT humble. We shouldn’t mix the two. Humility gives place to believe in our strengths, skills and talents. Humble people are confident.
The second point I draw from this is, humility is thinking less of yourself. The first has to do with self esteem, this point rather emphasizes on us not being the center of attention. Everything should not be “me, myself & I”. When you think more of yourself, you will want to be associated with the high & mighty, occupy chief seats etc. I have also noticed how the craze for titles are a rush for such ilk. People like that are very partial, and will relate with you based on status. How sad!
People who think more of themselves actually think of themselves less. It is because of a poor self esteem, that is why they mask themselves with a false sense of superiority at the expense of relationships to get to the top. Looking at the story critically, the place of honor was not what Jesus was concerned with. It was rather the attitude with which they attach significance to that place of honor that probably caught Jesus’ attention.
Some feel so “important” that not getting the right seat will throw them into a hissy fit. No way, am I also advocating disrespect. But if you attach your worth or significance to a seat of honor or your associations, that is a humility test that needs to be retaken.
Jesus promised, those who live a humble life will be exalted in the end. Living a humble life in this context means thinking of others first before assuming what you think is rightfully yours. So humility here is more of an attitude.
May we choose the path of humility which has a great recompense of a reward.
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Peace & Love.