Humble Is as Humble Does

Don’t imagine that if you meet a really humble man he will be what most people call “humble” nowadays: he will not be a sort of greasy, smarmy person who is always telling you that, of course, he is nobody. Probably all you will think about him is that he seemed a cheerful, intelligent chap, who took a real interest in what you said to him. If you do dislike him it will be because you feel a little envious of anyone who seems to enjoy life so easily. He will not be thinking about humility: he will not be thinking about himself at all. ~ C.S. Lewis

Humility doesn’t seem to get a lot of attention in Christian circles. We talk about so many things. We talk about love and grace and faith and money. We talk about the Word, the causes and the candidates. We talk about other denominations, other points of view and other people. We talk.

If we’re interested in following the One who humbled himself beyond our ability to comprehend, C.S. Lewis offers a few pointers.

1. Begin by acknowledging you aren’t. Anyone who considers himself to be humble, is amazingly vain.

2. However interesting your thoughts and ideas and stories might be, find those of others more interesting.

3. Read, think, pray and play so that your cheerful encounters with people add bits of light and insight.

4. Forget about yourself. Don’t think about your hair, your clothes, your weight, your point, or your wit. Be so preoccupied with the thoughts and hearts of others that you just forget to think about yourself altogether.

Humility goes without saying.

Author: Debbie

A former counselor and public speaker, I'm grateful for many, many things - God's grace most of all!

14 thoughts on “Humble Is as Humble Does”

  1. What an excellant topic. I hate to say it but I haven’t seen a whole lot of humility among Christians. We all struggle with it, needing to remind ourselves that everything….that is….everything that is good comes from our Father. Thank you and thanks for drawing on the wisdom of C.S. Lewis.

    1. Sue – the joy in this blog for me is the wisdom of those I quote, like C.S. Lewis, and those who share their hearts and thoughts in response, like you. Thank you.
      ~ Debbie

  2. Wonderful post. I’ve never thought of myself as humble, yet I have had several people comment that they think I am. I guess that’s a good sign, but I don’t let it get to my head. I am well aware of my condition and am always working to display more humility. But I tend to forget that at the most inopportune times and constantly have to backtrack to see where I messed up. I especially like point four.


    1. Jeff – funny, I can’t remember anyone ever telling me that they think I’m humble… Not the best sign, is it? I’m with you on number 4.
      Thanks for traveling with me,
      ~ Debbie

    1. Ok, first of all what was the”stirring the pot”. Feel like I’m missing out on something thought provoking?
      Second I can hear many asking ” How does this work with those digging themselves out of the mire after forgetting who they are and only thinking about others?”. I think I just answered my own question while I was typing. It’s first getting unhealthy thinking and behaviors “healthy” by taking care of ones self. So actually caring about yourself which involves thinking about “I” but in the context of how God sees us and loving ourselves so. But NOT promoting “I”.
      That’s the short version. 🙂

      1. Cath – For the ‘stirring the pot’ reference, you can click on Resting in His Grace on my blog roll. You asked and answered an excellent question! Thank you for doing my work for me!
        ~ Debbie

  3. Debbie,
    I remember speaking with a mother a long time ago about her family. The second sentence out of her mouth was, “I am just so humble” and you’re right — my reaction was, “Oh sure you are!”
    Humility is so hard to grasp because in trying to grasp it, we fall into the very trap C.S. mentions — we think about ourselves.
    Thanks for this post.
    God bless.

    1. Carley – that would be funny if it weren’t so true! I completely agree with you – the more we think about being humble, the more we’re thinking about ourselves which is pretty counterproductive. I guess maybe humility isn’t something to strive for as much as it’s something that shows in the lives of the grace-filled. Thank you for reading and sharing!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s