Whoever exalts himself will be humbled; but whoever humbles
himself shall be exalted.” Matthew 23:12
Last Friday was the 100th day of school at St. Mary’s and that’s cause for a huge celebration! We spend days and days doing math activities to reinforce the concept of the number 100…it’s big stuff. In the spirit of changing things up this year, my wonderful partner teacher suggested the two of us dress up like we were a hundred years old. We were quite a site, let me tell ya! Actually I’m still seeing flecks of grey hair paint every now and again and I’m still itchy from that head to toe polyester I was wearing. The kids weren’t quite sure what to think of us at first but the silliness made for a great day.
When we had finished afternoon prayers and sat down to read a story one of my little lovelies cuddled up right beside me patting my “helmet-like”spray painted hair and said, “Mrs. Wohlfert, you look so pretty." She was admiring the three awful pieces of chunky plastic jewelry I had around my neck to accessorize my nightmare of an outfit like they were precious jewels. For one little moment I wanted to scream… “Are you kidding me…pretty…I’m in 30 year old polyester from the Good Will store!” I’m so glad I didn’t say anything because I would have missed the heart-melting statement she made next. She smiled and said, “You look like my great-grandma. She’s in heaven now and I miss her.” My eyes got a little wet and I felt humbled by her connection.
I read something recently that reminded me about the importance
of being exalted by others. We’ve all probably had an experience with someone who let their talent, fame or money go to their head in an arrogant way and these folks give “being exalted” a bad name. Nobody wants to see themselves become swallowed up by pride, ego and bragging so all too often we do an about face the other way and don’t allow ourselves to be exalted. Sincere compliments and praise from others for things done well, or in a Christ-like way are God’s way of letting us know He is pleased.
There is a real danger in never accepting affirmation. Scripture calls us to give and to receive…that includes compliments. It’s an awful feeling when you are trying to respond to something wonderfully done with a heartfelt compliment and the receiver rejects it or feels the need to shoot a compliment right back to you like an IOU. God calls us to be gracious and humble in all things. Practice your humble and simple “thank you” so the next time someone feels called to exalt you, you’ll know just what to do!
A Seed To Plant: Make a list of 5 people you think need to be exalted then get busy with the list. The harder part of the homework today…be ready to accept kind words from others with humble gratitude.
Blessings on your day!
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