Sunday 10 February 2008

Some days you just crawl forward an inch on your hands and knees.

But humility is a good thing. Once you work out for yourself, over the months or years that it takes, that God is okay with crawling forward inch by inch, that he isn't, in fact, our culture or our own flesh writ large, but is wholly different from us, then you can begin to relax into your humility.

Humility is a vulnerable place to be for us humans. We prefer the positions at the head of the table. That way we know that we've made it. It must mean we're alright if we're at the head of the table. It assuages those whispers that scream at 3am that we're not alright. But assuaging the feelings by power-plays and comparisons is never going to fix the heart of the problem. Which is the human flesh. That's the heart of the problem.

And so humility is a good thing for us. Not because God is a big bastard who deems self-flagellation is the way to go - I can understand why people fall into that side ditch, but it so betrays the heart of Love and beating ourselves up, whether physically or psychologically, never did nothin'. Humility is a good thing because it forces me to shut up and stop looking at my own stinking, boring stuff and look at God for a change.

There's an idea :)

Humility softens us. It oils the edges of the cracks so that Love can pour in. It slows us down, forces us to focus on the task at hand, instead of looking to the future to create our own mini empires.

Humility means that I keep walking forward toward greater creativity, even though I keep falling down and even though I feel like quite the dick (even though no one's watching). It exposes the lies my ego tells me - that everything I create has to be a masterpiece. That's just my ego and my fear colluding into trying to stop me creating anything at all. I don't want to listen to that crap anymore. It's boring and it's hamstrung me for so long and I'm not listening, I'm not listening, I'm not listening. I'm sticking my fingers in my ears and saying, "La la la la" so that I don't have to listen to those boring paper tigers and their incessant chatter about why it is that I should stay exactly where I am and not even consider dipping my toe into the waters, let alone flinging all my gear off and diving in.

Well, bugger you, paper tigers. I understand your concern - really, I do. Creativity is a dangerous business. Even sitting on the couch and writing stuff feels dangerous. It's no coincidence that so many of its practitioners try to turn down the heat and the fear with alcohol, dope, coke, sex, whatever. I understand your reticence to fling me into that kind of danger. But one thing I do know, dear paper tigers - you tried to fool me into thinking that your whispers to not go forward were about humility - who was I to think I could indulge in such grandiosity? - when really, that was just false humility trying to disguise the fact that it's just good old everyday garden variety fear.

Humility opens us up to each other.


  1. Sue,

    Thanks for the thoughts on humility. I've been humbled myself lately and wrote a poem about it last night. This is a good, but heard, but good, place to be.

  2. Chad,

    Good, but hard, but good. But hard. But hard! But hard!

    :) (That flesh, it doth squeal so loud. Like a stuck pig)


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