In the life of a Christian, humility is an indispensable quality that is needed in order to allow the gifts of the Holy Spirit to grow. This was the reflection of Pope Francis in his homily at Mass, Tuesday morning, in the chapel of the Casa Santa Marta residence in the Vatican. Drawing inspiration from the Prophet Isaiah, the Pope said that every Christian is like “a small shoot on which the Spirit of the Lord rests, the spirit of wisdom and intelligence, the spirit of counsel and fortitude, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord “. “These,” the Pope said, “are the gifts of the Holy Spirit which grow from the smallness of the bud to the fullness of the Spirit. This is the promise, this is the Kingdom of God” and “the life of the Christian,” he stressed.
The Pope said that the task of a Christian is to be aware that each of us is a “sprout of that root which must grow with the power of the Holy Spirit, to the fullness of the Holy Spirit in us.” And our task, he said is to safeguard this sprout, this growth which is the Spirit.” The Holy Father said this is done by adopting a lifestyle of a Christian that resembles Christ, which is the path of humility.
The Holy Father said it takes faith and humility to believe that this bud, this small gift will grow to the fullness of the gifts of the Holy Spirit. He said, it takes humility to believe that the Father, Lord of Heaven and Earth, as the day’s Gospel says, has hidden these things from the wise and the learned and revealed them to the little ones. Humility means to be small, like the sprout that grows little by little to the fullness of life through the power of Holy Spirit.
The Pope further explained that being humble does not mean being polite, courteous or closing one’s eyes in prayer. Being humble means being able to accept humiliations. “Humility without humiliation,” he stressed, “ is not humility.” A humble man or a woman is one who is able to endure humiliations like Jesus whom the Pope described as “the great humiliated.”
Pope Francis recalled the example of many saints “who not only accepted humiliations but asked for them” in order to resemble Jesus. The Pope concluded his homily urging that the Lord “grant us this grace to safeguard this smallness towards the fullness of the Spirit without forgetting the root and by accepting humiliation.