It always pays to be simple, humble, child-like

By Fr. Roy Cimagala

THOSE intriguing words of Christ, “I give you praise, 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,” (Lk 10,21) should clearly reassure us that it always pays to be simple, humble and child-like.

Reinforcing that claim are also these words of Christ addressed to his disciples who in general were just a bunch of simple and humble people with all their share of weaknesses: “Blessed are the eyes that see what you see. For I say to you, many prophets and kings desired to see what you see, but did not see it, and to hear what you hear, but did not hear it.” (Lk 10,24)

Somehow, we are reminded of what St. Paul said regarding this point: “God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him.” (1 Cor 1,27-29) Of course, St. Peter said something similar: “God resists the proud, and gives grace to the humble.” (1 Pt 5,5)

Amid the complexities of our life today, we have to learn to stay humble and simple because that is the basic way to precisely handle these complexities well. When we are humble and simple, we would know how to blend openness, tolerance and versatility on the one hand, and to stick to the truth in charity on the other hand.

It is genuine humility and simplicity that would enable us to face the complexities of our life because these are the virtues that liken and identify us with Christ. And with Christ, we can manage to tackle anything.

That is why Christ said: “Learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden light.” (Mt 11,29-30)

Of course, this is a mysterious and intriguing kind of reasoning that Christ is telling us. And that is simply because he is telling us something that is mainly spiritual and supernatural in character. He is not giving us an indication that is meant to tackle purely natural situations and predicaments.

We have to realize that our life does not only have material, temporal and natural dimensions. It has an eminently spiritual and supernatural character for which the spiritual and supernatural means are more important and necessary than the natural ones.

Humility and simplicity are the virtues that would make us acknowledge that we are nothing without God. They sort of open our soul for the grace of God to enter. And it is this grace that transforms us, irrespective of our human impotencies, mistakes and errors, into becoming children of God.

And with God’s grace in our soul because of our humility and simplicity, we can manage to receive the gifts of faith, hope and charity. We can believe natural truths that not only are difficult to discover but also to understand. Even more, it is humility and simplicity that would enable us to believe supernatural truths where there is no way for us to fully understand them, much less, explain them in a human way.