Humility is like patience, something we want, without going through the pain of acquiring it. I’ve heard it described as a courteous respect for others. The Bible calls it not thinking more highly of ourselves than we ought.
We all want people to think well of us, it’s human nature. And it takes some self confidence to make it in this world. So when does self confidence turn into arrogance? I’m not sure I know the answer, but I think it’s when we start treating someone as if they aren’t as good as us. We may not mean to, but suddenly, it happens. And if we’re truly humble, we feel bad.
I see humility as the result of a refining process designed to take the rough edges off our personality. Without it we can’t help others, because we won’t let God help us. If we think we can do a better job ourselves, He’s likely to let us get on with it. Unfortunately we can’t, and we trip and fall, skinning our knees in the process.
Don’t feel bad if you’ve taken a tumble. We’ve all had our share of skinned knees. The idea is to get back up, a little wiser this time. There’s an old saying “Don’t think less of yourself; think of yourself less.” It’s a valuable piece of advice. If we’re focused on the needs of others and building them up, we’re not thinking about how it reflects on us. And soon we don’t care if we look a little foolish. Hey foolishness happens sometimes, and it happens to everyone, it’s how we earn humility.