Humility counts! We see Mary going to visit her cousin Elizabeth, who was pregnant, in spite of being pregnant herself. She wanted to help her cousin during her delivery and what a great meeting of Jesus and His forerunner in the womb. We have heard of lots of stories from legends, and even studies done, to say that life begins from conception and the feelings and environment of the mother affects the growth of the child in the womb. Here we hear about the reaction of the children in the womb to one another.
There is a story in Indian mythology where a worrier Abimanyu was in the womb of Draupadi and was taught to fight inside CHakravyue and she fell asleep before she was told how to come out of it. Abimanyu was defeated since he did not know how to come out because mother fell asleep while Abimanyue was in the womb before he could learn the trick.
There is a strong parallel between Jesus and John the Baptist and also between Mary and Elizabeth. Both were born very miraculously and were so humble before one another. They did not consider each other as rivals or competitors to one another. The dialogue of Mary and Elizabeth acknowledging the greatness of one another and becoming of service to each other is so amazing. Considering oneself to be unworthy of the service being offered and feeling privileged of the goodness of the other. We also see that being continued in Jesus and John. More often we are at war with each other because we feel it is my right and we feel deprived. As a result we come out as disgruntled activists rather than people with gratitude, contentment and joy.
Humility of Elizabeth brought joy to herself and also brought blessings to John in her womb. It was continued in the life of John when, being approached by Jesus for baptism, he says, “It is He who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.” John 1:27 We also admire the humility of the Lord in his description of Himself as son of man. Whereas in Peter confession Peter addressed Jesus as ‘Son of God’.
Mt 16:13-16 He asked His followers, “Who do people say that I, the Son of Man?” They said, “Some say You are John the Baptist and some say Elijah and others say Jeremiah or one of the early preachers.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
Scripture teaches us that he became a humble man and was humble unto the cross to liberate us. When we become humble, blessings pour and we rise up to that divine sacrifice. We are all aware of the humility with which mother Theresa served the poor. While she began her service to the poor and went to beg for bread for her children the owner of the bakery spit on her for begging and Mother Theresa replied by saying, “This isn’t for me. Can you give something for my children?” That man was converted and every day he provided bread to the orphan children. She did not give up in spite of the humiliation that she had to undergo.
We celebrated the feast of our lady of Guadalupe. Juan Diego who saw the vision of mother Mary was so humble. He felt so unworthy yet he was chosen to be the messenger to the bishop. He event said to our lady, “Why don’t you choose a Spaniard who cold be able to convey the message to the bishop more effectively?” We also see it in the prophets who felt so unworthy including Moses who did not want to take up that responsibility. When we become humble God lifts us up.
When we give up on trusting on our own merits and power rather trusting in God we fail. There are instances where after being married for so many years, not having children even after going through many treatments nothing happens. After giving up all efforts and they adopt a child, then they have a child naturally born.
I remember counseling a person for a few months and I was making no progress, I tried all the techniques of counseling and behavior modification, but nothing worked. Finally, I had to give up because nothing was going to work and started saying yes to that person. Instead, I changed my behavior towards that person and things changed just like that. In a few days that person was able to function again, get a job, take medication on his own, and his symptoms became manageable. When we become humble and accept things, God starts working. In order that Jesus be born in our hearts, we need to be humble.
December 23, 2018