In my reading, I have noticed that saints are full of humility. Also, obviously, is Jesus. He truly humbled Himself, becoming human to save us from sin through His suffering, death, and resurrection.
Also in my reading, I am reminded over and over again that in order to become closer to God, one must humble oneself. So I prayed, "Humble me, Lord. Make me humble so I can be more like you." I promptly forgot about this prayer and got on with my life.
Have you ever been in a place in your professional or personal life where the allegorical buck must stop with you? Where you have had to make a hard, unpopular decision? The comments and communications about those difficult decisions that make everything more difficult to bear. We are left with several choices as to how to respond: meekness, compassion, gentleness. Then there is the more attractive (to my fallen nature) option: nasty yet witty email back, cutting remarks, gossip, and rage.
I try to take the high ground. Try to be meek, gentle, compassionate. Then I brood. I endlessly chatter on to others about how I was wronged, how unjustified so-and-so's behavior was, etc., boring to tears anyone who will listen for more than 5 minutes and in this way, feeding the unrest within my soul. I lose sleep over it. It was effects my family. I become ill at ease and unbearably cranky.
And one night, as I couldn't go to sleep, I had to write down my heart's conversation with God. And in it, He reminded me that I wanted to be humbled. He told me that in order to do this, He must put me in situations where I get to exercise the humility I am trying to strengthen. He also reminded me that these situations will be painful. I may not be called upon to endure what He endured, or even what St. Gerard Majella had to endure (falsely accused of rape, Gerard did not defend himself because the rule in the Redemptorist order is not to defend yourself when accused by making excuses-his accuser recanted after several months where Gerard was forbidden to leave the house or to take Communion), but that I would need to endure and I would need to start rejoicing in these small humiliations because they give me the chance to practice humility.
Then in the morning, as if to underline what He told my heart the night before, when I went to comment on a friend's blog, the comment verification word was "humbl."
So, I struggle, I try, and I have been schooled with a lesson I won't forget (at least until next week).