Divine Mercy: Answers Humble Prayers
Dear brothers and sisters,
You might have heard the story of a proud lion and his mastery of the animal kingdom. One day he decided to make sure all the other animals knew he was the king of the jungle. He was so confident that he by-passed the smaller animals and went straight to the bear. "Who is the king of the jungle?" the lion asked. The bear replied, "You are, of course." Next he asked the tiger, "Who is the king of the jungle?" The tiger quickly responded, "Everyone knows that you are, mighty lion.” Finally, the lion faced the elephant and addressed his question, "Who is the king of the jungle?" The elephant immediately grabbed the lion with his trunk, whirled him around in the air five or six times and slammed him into a tree. The lion - beaten, bruised, and battered - struggled to his feet. He looked at the elephant through sad and bloody eyes and said, "Look, just because you don’t know the answer is no reason for you to get mean about it!"
Most of us roar through life without God in the same way - as if we are kings of the jungle - until life throws us in a tail spin and shows us that we are not. In the Bible, there are hundreds of examples of prideful people humbled; and humble people exalted. (Luke 1:46-55).
Pride also affects religious people; it is called the spiritual pride. The Pharisee went home unjustified – because he was full of spiritual pride. This can be summarized as an attitude of self-sufficiency, self-importance, and self-exaltation in relation to God; and an attitude of contempt and indifference in relation to others. (Lk. 18:11-12; Mt. 23). Pride is spiritual cancer: It eats up the very possibility of love, peace, even common sense. The more we have it in ourselves, the more we dislike it in others.
Jesus presents to us with two people praying in the temple: The tax collector went home justified, i.e. saved and blessed. God was pleased by his humble presence, disposition and prayer. The Pharisee went home unjustified – because he was full of spiritual pride - an attitude of self-sufficiency, self-importance, and self-exaltation in relation to God. Toward others, it is an attitude of contempt and indifference. (Lk. 18: 11-12; Mt. 23).
There is a good type of pride. (Rom. 15:17–19). The best way to overcome our pride is to give glory to God in everything; and “consider others better than yourself”. (Phil 2:3-4). May your humble prayers be answered!
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