October 31, 2020

For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.

Jesus here cautions about the pride that would lead us to assume that we deserve places of honor and marks of esteem in life. The jockeying for greatness is endemic—even for believers. Recall that when Jesus predicted that he was to suffer and die, Jesus’ disciples begin arguing who will be the greatest (Luke 9:46-50; Mark 9:30-34). The same is true after the third prediction when James and John angle for top positions in the kingdom (Mark 10:32-36). Jesus wants us to realize that leadership requires humble service to others. Serving those whom everyone else considers not worth their time is what makes a leader great.

Most of us detest self-promotion when we see it in someone else. However, each of us has a strange ability to find reasons why we need to promote ourselves. Jesus wants us to give up on our self-promoting ways. He calls us to be humble and then let God do the exalting. We shouldn’t be surprised when the apostle Paul held Jesus up as the perfect example of humility—Jesus didn’t cling to position; he emptied himself of self-promotion and was obedient to God. As a result, God exalted him at the proper time (Philippians 2:5-11). Pride is destructive, selfish, and poisonous to Christian service and maturity. We all need to humble ourselves before both God and others, trusting God to honor us at the appropriate time.

The Mass is the ultimate reminder of how Jesus humbled himself, willingly accepting death, even death on a cross. He did so out of love for us and to give us an example to follow. Can we do any less?

Let Us Pray:

Father, I confess to you that I sometimes feel overlooked and underappreciated. Part of me longs for the spotlight and the accolades that come with it. Yet, loving Father, I know that is only foolish pride grabbing my heart. I know Satan longs to use that pride to incite envy, pettiness, gossip, vanity, and a host of other unholy traits in me. Humble me gently, Father, for I trust only in my value to you.


Daily Eucharistic Reflection – Center for Eucharistic Evangelizing (eucharisticevangelizing.com)
To receive the Daily Eucharistic Reflection in your email, please contact Director, CEE [cee@blessedsacrament.com]


About Paul J. Bernier, SSS

Blessed Sacrament Father Paul J. Bernier served for many years as the editor of Emmanuel. He is a popular writer, preacher, and director of retreats. Among his many published works is Ministry in the Church: A Historical and Pastoral Approach, Second Edition, published by Orbis Books in 2015. His most recent book is A Eucharistic Spirituality: Inspired by Saint Peter Julian Eymard – Apostle of the Eucharist, which he co-authored with Jim Brown.