In Others’ Words: Humility

“Life is a long lesson in humility.” ~James M. Barrie, Scottish author

There’s a choice to be made as I grow up–and yes, grow older.

Am I going to be all about me, me, me? Am I going to push myself to the front of the line, to the center of the stage–doing whatever it takes to ensure the focus, the limelight is on me?

Or am I going to step back … way back … saying, “You first.”

Will I be content in the chorus while you play the lead?

I know people who display humility –a true expression of considering others more important than themselves. They are some of the most truly beautiful people I know, a beauty that radiates from the inside-out.

In Your Words: How has life taught you humility–to consider others more important that yourself? (I’m not talking about humiliation.) Who do you know who displays true from-the-heart humility?


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  1. October 7, 2011, 5:41 am   /  Reply

    Humility is a learned behavior that takes a lifetime to hone. I’m content to do the background work so I’m not in the limelight, but since signing my first contract, I have to make a conscious effort to give the glory to the One who deserves it. He is the reason I’m now a published author–one who has a long way to go in many areas.

    At ACFW, I loved what Jim Rubart said about ask and listen. I’m trying to do more asking and listening instead of talking. Sometimes it’s hard, especially when there’s exciting news to share, but I’ve learned wonderful things about my friends by asking and listening.

    • Beth Vogt
      October 7, 2011, 7:21 am   /  Reply

      Thanks for the reminder about what Jim R. said, Lisa. Quite honestly, I’d forgotten his encouragement to ask questions about others first–and then to listen, listen, listen.

  2. October 7, 2011, 6:15 am   /  Reply

    If I’m honest, I learned this the hard way. I had a sick sister and she took up a lot of attention. But as hard as it was to deal with that, it did teach me a lot about not having to be first. I’m still learning about this.
    ~ Wendy

    • Beth Vogt
      October 7, 2011, 7:20 am   /  Reply

      That is a challenging way to learn about humility and considering others more important than yourself. As a child, it’s difficult when one sibling requires most of the attention. But, knowing you, I believe you’ve culled the positive from that situation.

  3. October 7, 2011, 7:36 am   /  Reply

    I endeavor not to make it all about me, but I blow it at times. It’s so easy to get wrapped up in myself and what’s going on in my world. When I shift the focus onto others, I learn more about them and am blessed in the process.

    • Beth Vogt
      October 7, 2011, 10:26 am   /  Reply

      I am always amazed at the blessings of “making it” about others, Keli. Shifting the focus, as you say. And since I’ve known you, I’ve learned that you are all about the other person.

  4. October 7, 2011, 10:21 am   /  Reply

    The thing about humility is, it’s truly one of those things you can’t fake. Anything less than sincere humility is see-through…two people who immediately come to my mind are my grandparents. They are two of the most sincerely humble people I know. They are constantly thinking of others, constantly reaching out to encourage and build up the people around them. They rock…and I want to be like them!

    • Beth Vogt
      October 7, 2011, 10:27 am   /  Reply

      Ah, a legacy of humility, Melissa. Such a blessing.

  5. Jeanne
    October 7, 2011, 1:17 pm   /  Reply

    What a great quote and fitting thoughts, Beth. I agree with Lisa. Humility is learned through living. I’ve learned humility the hard way at times (through humiliation), and I’ve also learned it by having to practice it. Being on a worship team keeps me in a constant place of choosing to be humble about being “in front” of others. By that, I mean that worship, and leading others in worshipping Jesus requires the singing to be all for my Audience of One, if it is truly to be worship. Does that make sense? I sometimes the Lord allows us to learn humility by practicing it in every day living.
    The most humble woman I’ve ever met is Gisela Yohannon, the wife of a man who heads up Gospel for Asia. I’d like to be like her when I grow up.

    • Beth Vogt
      October 7, 2011, 2:27 pm   /  Reply

      Thanks for sharing, Jeanne. I look forward to finding out more about Gisela Yohannon.

  6. Megan DiMaria
    October 8, 2011, 9:51 pm   /  Reply

    About a dozen years ago I had an experience that made me reconsider EVERYTHING and everyone in my life. Through no fault of my own I was betrayed and rejected by all of my siblings and their families. One of them told me my biggest offense was being a Christ follower. I was bullied and abused for many years, desperately trying to hold on to the love I thought was there. To say the experience put me in a tailspin is an understatement. It devastated me.

    And it set me free.

    I came to realize that NO ONE needs to be nice to you, and in response, I’ve come to understand that any kindness shown to me is a gift. I’m humbled by consideration others give me. I know what it’s like to have a black hole swallow you up — to feel worthless and unworthy of love. That, my friend is humbling.

    However, I chose to let my past make me better, not bitter. I truly am a more humble person, but I’m also a more thankful, appreciative person too. And so what was meant for my harm has become a blessing to me.

    • Beth Vogt
      October 9, 2011, 10:11 pm   /  Reply

      Your honesty is both refreshing and a gift, Megan. And it gives hope to others who need to know that the worst that can happen is not the end of the story (Philippians 1:6) … that it can become the greatest blessing.

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