In my last article, I wrote on the principles that can build a contented lifestyle. But in contrast, if an individual doesn’t walk in humility, he/she will also find it hard to live a life of contentment. So, in this week‘s article, I aim to outline some fundamental principles that can help in enabling a person to live a humble lifestyle.
What is humility? Humility comes from the Latin word humilitas, a noun related to the adjective himilis, which translated as “humble”. Humility plays a vital role in addressing intrinsic self-worth, relationships, and socialization as well as perspective; it is in religious practice, moral teaching, and also ethical study where the notion is often made more precise. Being humble doesn’t necessarily mean that you are weak and is easily dominated but rather speak of you being wise in making decisions, peace of mind, self-restraint from excessive vanity, able to submit to rules and regulations, and also able to process moral and/or ethical dimensions.
In true essence, humility is a choice on the part of each individual especially, when they are faced with pressure and diversity within their lives. They can either choose to get angry and frustrated with life or they can choose to become humble, trusting, and believing that by God’s grace, they will have a bright future.
As an example, I will use a story of the life of Abraham who was one of the greatest patriots in the Bible to illustrate my point. In this story Abraham had a son whose name was Isaac (Genesis 22:1-19) whom he loved very dearly but, at a certain time, Abraham was told by God to take his son to a mountain in Moriah and offer him as a sacrifice (kill his son). Although this command was mind bothering, Abraham never dares to question God. Why? Because, he knew that everything he had, including his son Isaac, was given to him by God so, if God required him back, He is also able to give him back again. A person who didn’t have any knowledge of Abraham’s background and experiences would think it’s a crazy idea and horrific act if carried out. Others would even dare to say that Abraham would have to be mentally insane to do such an unthinkable thing. But, because of Abraham‘s trust and belief in God, this causes him to carry out this command with humility. Four fundamental principles that were used by Abraham were his faith, belief, hope, and patient.
If you notice all attributes are apart our being so, if we move to enable them in our lives, we can also live as Abraham lived, in humility to man and God. Now let us take a closer look at each of them.
1. The first principle is faith- You might ask the question, as to how faith can help you to become humble? But in reality, there is not one person on earth who doesn’t have faith. If we were to use the example of a chair, each person takes a risk each time they try to sit on it and not knowing if it can sustain their weight without breaking, but because of their past experience with similar chairs, they developed the faith knowing that this chair won’t break leaving them flat on the ground.
In the same way, when it comes to life’s situation, no matter the difficulties that surround you, if you can have the faith as Abraham, then try to live life one day at a time in humility, this positive mindset will enable you the strength to rise above all circumstances.
There is a quote from J.R.R. Tolkien that says “Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens”.
2. The second principle is belief- Belief is one of the most important foundational blocks of life. As a human, if a person doesn’t believe and stands for something anything is capable of happening. But, when a person has a set belief, they will fight for what their belief is. Just as Abraham who knows and believed that he wouldn’t or couldn’t achieve what he did if, it wasn’t for God’s intervention. In the same way, if you humble yourself, and trust and believe that God will take you through all life challenges, it will surely be established.
Eric Davis once said “If you don’t believe in something you’ll fall for anything. I believe everything happens for a reason. If you are strong from within, you can will anything, I’m a firm believer that where there’s a will, there’s a way”.
3. The third principle is hope- First of all, without hope in a person’s lives, they would be the world most despair and tormented especially when troubles arise from every side. But if a person has a hopeful mindset, then he/she will be able to believe that all things are possible with God by their side (Mark 9:23). Abraham was able to remain humble because of his hope, in the same way; you can also become humble despite the circumstances that sometimes throw some curveball at you. Remember, nothing lasts forever and every tunnel has an end. So, please don’t go crazy or even lose your self-worth, it best to remain humble and await the end.
Tom Bodett once said, “A person needs three things to be truly happy in this world someone to love, something to do, and something to hope for”.
4. The fourth and final principle is patient- Without one’s patient; it would be very hard for a person to remain humble because a patient is that attribute that enables a person not to go nuclear.
The dictionary states that this characteristic exhibition of a calm endurance of pain, difficulties, provocation annoyance; and humility. Patient and humility go hand in hand because it is very hard to remain humble without one’s patient and also very hard to remain patient without humility. If Abraham didn’t have patients he wouldn’t be able to be as humble as he was.
With all said, you must also understand that every outstanding leader achieved their success only because they were able to become humbled as they learned from life experiences
Elizabeth Gilbert once said “to find the balance you want, this is what you must do become. You must keep your feet grounded so firmly on the earth that it’s like you have 4 legs instead of 2 that way; you can stay in the world. But you must stop looking through your head. You must look through with your heart instead. That way, you will know God”. Last but not lease let’s used these principles and I am sure just as Abraham you will be able to live a life of humility, looking to a brighter future in God.