Sunday, 6 January 2013

Listen to your elders in Humility

God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. Therefore, we who are young, as it is commanded in the scriptures ought to clothe ourselves with humility towards one another, and not only towards those of our peers but especially to those of the older generation. For they have much wisdom to instruct us. They have trodden the path with which we are yet to trodd, they have lingered under the rod of providence, they have sighed with joy under the weight of persecution, and they have upon their old faces the unfading wrinkles of great joy in Jesus Christ. We would be wise to listen to them in humilty, not thinking ourselves wiser or knowing better than them. And when they come to teach us about the pilgrim life, we are to listen carefully not letting their words deprart so quickly from our hearts. They have been those whose letter of the Spirit has been written in their hearts and in turn have written that message on the turning pages of life. From them we are to learn in humility. We are to subject all of their teachings to scripture for it is to that, that demands our greatest humility and submission. Our elders are not without error and if we feel that we have by grace an insight where we may correct their ways, we are not to be timid but tell them the errors of their ways in humility. We are those who seek to be holy, and humility is an essiantial characteristic of true piety. Our desire to be humble does not imply slavishness or servility; nor a wrong estimate of oneself or of our calling, but our humility is a constant disposition of our own unworthiness towards God, knowing that all we have are the result of his redeeming love for us. Therefore, the youth who possess great wisdom will not glory in his wisdom but rather give thanks to God for such a gift. The youth with great strength will not praise his strength but praise God who gracefully gives him such heavenly gifts. All praises will be diverted because they know that it is God who deserves them, for it is He who is at work in them; and although they recognize their own hard work and will not diminish that by any means, yet they say it is all of grace, nothing more and nothing less.


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