It always pays to be simple and humble

By Fr. Roy Cimagala

YES, indeed! It always pays to be simple and humble. And the reason is because such qualities can only attract God to us. Take note of what Christ once said: “I give praise to you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike.” (Mt 11,25)

And St. James in his letter reiterates the same point: “God opposes the proud and shows favor to the humble.” (4,6) One of the beatitudes highlights the importance of meekness: “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.” (Mt 5,5)

We should do everything to keep ourselves in the loop of these virtues of simplicity, humility, meekness and the like. More than that, we should always find ways of how we can continually grow in them, given the fact that we tend to get contented at achieving a certain level of these virtues. We should not forget that since the world never stops evolving with all its good and bad forces, we also need to continue developing these virtues to cope with the varying challenges being posed on us.

Let’s remember that Christ said it clearly. “Learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart.” Christ, our “way, truth and life,” points to us the crucial qualities we ought to develop in this life that is so full of challenges, with the view of tackling them properly.

It’s meekness and humility. They effectively resemble us with Christ. And with Christ in his meekness and humility, we would be ready to face all the challenges, trials, difficulties, etc., in life. That is the secret.

Christ reassures us. “My yoke is easy and my burden light.” We should not worry too much about life’s vagaries. Precisely when we feel pressured and weighed down, he tells us, “Come to me…and I will give you rest.”

Let us pay attention more to these words than to our human standards and estimation of things that will always consider these qualities as softness or meaningless passivity and defeatism, devoid of fighting spirit.

In fact, these words require a lot of strength and forcefulness, for they have to be reconciled also with these words of Christ: “The Kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent are taking it by force.” (Mt 11,13)

In this regard, we have to learn how to master our emotions and passions. They are notorious in exploding in their own reckless ways when not disciplined by our reason and most especially by our faith, hope and charity.

We need to train ourselves to feel at home with this divine indication that is meant for our redemption. We have to lose the fear of suffering. We have to assume the mind of the sacrificial lamb whose life-offering actually gives all of us eternal life.

All of this would require first of all the grace of God which God himself gives to us abundantly. But we have to learn to correspond to that grace as best that we could. We can start by reining in our emotions and passions, disciplining and purifying them so that they conform to the will and ways of God rather than to ours.

We have to learn to welcome whatever suffering, trial or challenges would come our way, reacting to them in a supernatural way, viewing them from the angle of faith, and tackling them with the spiritual and supernatural means that are made available to us.