I.What is humility?
A. In Hebrew scriptures humility is drawn from a root word ( a-nah ) which means to be afflicted, humbled or oppressed.
II. How did Jesus Christ show humility?
A. He was born to be a Savior and king yet he was born in a stable.
1. He did not place himself above anyone else.
B. He had no home.
1. He did not feel entitled to anything special even considering who he is.
C. He was perfect, yet he was baptized.
1. He did not justify why the law did not pertain to him, and he did not place himself above any law.
D. He showed that he understood that he needed and could gain strength from God, Our Father in Heaven, by fasting for forty days, in order that he might gain strength for the upcoming events.
1. He was willing to endure physical and emotional discomfort, to show sacrifice and receive strength.
E. He said even in his greatest pain, not my will but thine will be done, as he suffered in the Garden of Gethsemane.
1. He always explained that all he did was because of the Father, and showed his greatest desire was to do God's will.
F.He showed that he was humble by asking God for help many times throughout the scriptures.
1. He was aware that he needed strength and help from his Father, God.
2. My absolute expression of his humility was in his Intercessory prayer as recorded in John 17:9. In this prayer he shows great love for his Apostles and us. He asks God to help them, and us, as he says VS. 9: I pray for them : I pray not for the world, but for them which thou has given me, for they are thine. VS.11: And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee Holy Father, keep through thine own name, those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one as we are. VS.20: Neither I pray for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word.
III. Three ways that we can be compelled to become humble.
A. There is a great account in Alma 59 that encompasses three different ways that we sometimes are compelled to become humble. I think it is important to recognize some ways that we can become humble, in order that we might respond in a way that growth and development can come to us.
1. First I would like you to remember the armies of Helaman, and the stripling warriors. These warriors were holding true to a promise that their parents made after they were humbled because of SIN. As their wars caused so much blood shed, their parents became humbled to repentance which allowed for a desire to change to be wrought upon them. They burried their weapons of war and promised to never fight again, so we can see in this instance it was SIN that was the element that caused their humility unto repentance. We can see this in our own lives when we SIN, it always causes negative affects in our lives. Some examples are ; if a person lies, they will have to cover up more lies, and eventually will be caught in a lie, and others will not trust them. If we envy others, the negative affect is unhappiness, and most likely a failure to have healthy relationships. As sin creates negative affects sometimes and hopefully we can recognize the need for change.
2. Now we will fast forward some and now the leader of those same stripling warriors is in trouble. He does not have enough men to help in his battles and many of his men are lost through death. Captain Moroni whom was even charged over Helaman was very angry that this had happened because he already had sent a letter to the Chief Judge Pahoran explaining that Helaman's men needed help. Upon not receiving this help, and hearing of the death of Helaman's men Captain Moroni sent a letter in anger to the Chief Judge Pahoran, and in this letter he basically blames all of Helaman's men's deaths on Pahoran. He also threatened if he did not recieve help they would leave their position and take what their army needed. When Pahoran received this letter he could have very easily have been very offended as he was being blamed for people's deaths. This happens in our lives as well, sometimes people can complain to us about our actions, and become angry at us, whether or not the reason is valid, we can respond in a humble manner the way that Pahoran did to this letter. Pahoran was humble because he was only sorry for what had happened, even though it was not his fault. In Alma 61:9 he says, " And now in your epistle you have censured me, but it mattereth not; I am not angry, but I do rejoice in the greatness of your heart." In VS.2 he says, " I do not joy in your afflictions, yea it grieves my soul." Then he goes onto explain that he was taken out of the judgement seat where he would not have the authority to send men to help him because he had been driven out of the land by some wicked men who wanted a king. And so the element that brought humility here is others. Other people can give us advise, express our wrongs, and they may even be trying to help us.We can accept their advise humbly. When the advise is wrongfully given we can chose to humbly react in a positive way, by only showing love.
3. In Alma 62:41 we learn that because of Helaman's men being lost it brought them to be humbled. So the last element that compelled them to humility was a trial, an affliction or sorrow. We can read in VS.41 it says, " But behold because of the exceedingly great length f the war between the Nephites and Lamenites many had become hardened because of their afflictions insomuch that they did humble themselves before God, even in the depth of humility. " Sometimes in our lives we are faced with trials, or tragedy like a loss of a job, the death of a family member or friend, and as well health issues can me a major affliction for some.
IV. How can being humbled bring us blessings?
A. When we chose to react in a positive way to these examples I have mentioned we are chosing to be humbled, instead of harvesting anger, or resentment in our hearts. If we use these experiences to humble us, we will desire to make a change or receive strength from God through PRAYER.
Just like when Christ needed help he prayed so can we pray for strength to change, and endure our trials.
B. When we continually say daily prayers and keep a continual prayer in our hearts, it helps bring our desires into alignment with God's will for us. It also can compel us to REPENT.
C. As we repent it allows us to have the HOLY GHOST with us more. As we have the Holy Ghost with us more, we will be enticed to do more good, and we will be given the strength that we need to make changes in our lives.
1. In D&C 6: 14-15 it explains how when we pray to receive instructions, the Holy Ghost can give us instructions. We read :
14 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, blessed art thou for what thou hast done; for thou hast ainquired of me, and behold, as often as thou hast inquired thou hast received instruction of my Spirit. If it had not been so, thou wouldst not have come to the place where thou art at this time.
15 Behold, thou knowest that thou hast inquired of me and I did enlighten thy amind; and now I tell thee these things that thou mayest know that thou hast been benlightened by the cSpirit of truth;
V. I will share a story that explains that when we are humble we can be given instruction and opportunity to become the individuals that God wants us to be. Just as Jesus Christ prayed to God the Father for us to become one with him, we can gain the strength that we need to develop attributes and characteristics that he has, and that he desires for us to have. I know that being humble enough to recognize that we need God's help will help us become what he desires of us.
A. There was a story of a tiny striped caterpillar and how he joined a pile of other squirming, pushing
caterpillars who were trying to get to the top of the pile. It was only when he talked to a certain
yellow caterpillar that the two of them decided that getting on the top wasn’t really what they
wanted most. So, they climbed down and away from the others. They enjoyed being together,
and they ate and grew fat until one day they became bored, and they wanted to find out if there
was more to life. The striped caterpillar decided to find out by climbing again to the top of the
caterpillar pile. The yellow caterpillar felt ashamed that she didn’t agree but decided it was
better to wait until she could take action she could believe in. So he climbed, and she wandered
aimlessly until she saw a caterpillar hanging upside down on a branch and caught in some
hairy substance. She said, “You seem to be in trouble. Can I help you?” “No,” said the hanging
caterpillar, “I have to do this to become a butterfly.”
“Butterfly? What is a butterfly?”
“It’s what you are meant to be. It flies with beautiful wings and joins the earth to heaven. It
drinks only nectar from the flowers and carries seeds of love from one flower to another. Without
butterflies the world would soon have few flowers.”
The yellow caterpillar exclaimed, “It can’t be true! How can I believe there’s a butterfly inside
you or me when all I see is a fuzzy worm? How does one become a butterfly?”
The hanging caterpillar said, “You must want to fly so much that you are willing to give up being a
The yellow caterpillar began fearfully but continued the process until at length she became a
butterfly. Then she helped the striped caterpillar learn who he was and leave the pile to become what
he was really meant to be. . . .
So it is for us as Latter-day Saints. We too must act worthy of ourselves and the glorious vision
of truth and eternity which has been restored to us. That vision of eternal growth and gentle, loving
persuasion is too great a dream to let go of when we hunger in our hearts to be one with our Savior.
The power is in you to reach out and claim those blessings. You have the powers within you to be
Christlike. It is what you are meant to be.
(Barbara B. Smith, “The Powers Within You,” speech given at Brigham Young University on 1 February 1981)
I am so thankful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ in my life that has provided me with all of the knowledge that I need to become eternally happy. I am thankful for a loving Father in Heaven who provided us with a Savior, so that we might be able to come to this earth, learn and grow from life experiences and try our best to become like him. Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ truly love us all so very much, and they do want to provide us with incredible blessings that we can't even imagine. My hope is that I will be humble enough to follow the Spirit when I do pray and ask what it is that I need to change, in order that I can become not just like them, but become one with them? My prayer is for all of us to remember his desires and will for us, and that we will come together as Brothers and Sisters in the Gospel to provide each other strength and love.
I say this in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Emily Turano :)