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Saturday, October 26, 2013

Humble Honesty

"But the tax collector stood off at a distance and would not even raise his eyes to heaven but beat his breast and prayed, 'O God, be merciful to me a sinner.'" Lk 18:13

Humility is really nothing more than honesty. The honest person, acknowledging his faults and sins, knows how often he has skirted the fullness of the Gospel, avoided difficult decisions, and sought ways around living in a manner that honors God without pretense or limitation, and all of this while rushing around madly getting things done!

Busyness, as Thomas Merton wrote in Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander, is a contemporary form of violence and becomes an excuse not to be involved in helping work for the common good. In a telling and demanding book, Common Fire: Lives of Commitment in a Complex World, the authors remind us:
As long as we are busy, we can feel overwhelmed and "involved." Swamped by the demands of securing a life for ourselves, we can more easily justify begging off from responsibility for the commons. (Common Fire)
Proud of our individual accomplishments and success, we ignore the most formidable challenge of the Gospel, to live an integrated life that values work, rest, leisure and commitment to others. Without a healthy balance of activity and contemplation, we live a Gospel that others shrink from, and in the name of passion scare off those seeking a path of devotion and joy. When we fail to be approachable and welcoming, we speak about Good News but never become the living word that offers others light and hope.

Today, ask for the gift of true humility.

What do others catch from you about the Gospel?

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