Sunday, September 26, 2010


A stooped old man and a lively young man happened to meet one day. The young man bragged to the old timer, “Why don’t you walk straight like me? That’s no way to grow old. It’s all a matter of habit-at least that’s what I am told

The old man gave him a look of pity and said, “My dear young friend, have you ever examined a grain field and noticed which heads are bent and which ones stand up straight? If you take a good look as harvest time draws near, you will notice that the heads which are empty are standing tall and high. But the heads that make a good harvest are the ones that are filled and bending low”

The young man heard those words and passed by, slowly bowing his head. No doubt he pondered many a day on what the old man had said.

1. As long as the Twelve thought of Jesus’ kingdom as an earthly kingdom it was inevitable that they should be in competition for the highest places in it. In the eight century the Venerable Bede suggested that this particular quarrel arose because Jesus had taken Peter, John and James up into the mountain top with him and the others were jealous.

2. Jesus knew what was going on in their hearts. He brought a child to sit beside him; that would be the seat of highest honour. He went on to say that whoever received a little child, received him; and whoever received him, received God. What did he mean? The Twelve were the chosen instruments of Jesus; but this child occupied no place of honour and held no official position. Jesus was saying, ‘If you are prepared to spend your lives serving, helping, loving people who, in the eyes of the world, do not matter at all, you are serving me and serving God.

3. There is the desire for prestige. Many people work for human recognition, not for God. When we work for God, prestige will be the last thing that enters into our mind, for we will know that even our best is not good enough for him

4. There is a desire for place. If we are given a task or a position or an office in the Church, we should regard it not as an honour but as a responsibility. There are those who serve within the Church, not thinking really of those they serve, but thinking of themselves.

5. There is a desire for prominence. Many people will serve or give so long as their service and their generosity are known and they are thanked and praised. It is Jesus’ own instruction that we should not let let our left hand know what our right hand is doing.

We are living in a time where we are compelled to outsmart the other. Humility is the last virtue we can think of and we do not find it any more relevant. Humility is not exactly hiding the fact that you are capable of doing something but a proper exercise of your abilities and talents with right attitude. Pride and Jealousy is a clear indication that we are no more humble. Jesus is asking us to become humble and commands us to fight against pride. God will decide which rank or what post to give us. The best way to become great is to climb high the ladder of virtues, in which the first step is the virtue of humility.

William Barclay – The New Daily Study Bible
The Next 500 hundred Stories

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