Accountable to God, Loving Toward Others

Listen to the sermon Joel Russell-MacLean

Learning for Life9:30 am
The Gospel of Mark — How Jesus relates to our lives

Worship Service11:00 am

Bulletin: March 31
NewsletterMarch 2019

Scriptures: Psalm 19, Colossians 3:12-17, Luke 18.9-14


Rev. Joel Russell-MacLean

What is humility?

Jesus told a story about a man who went to pray, convinced in himself of his own rightness. He stood apart from others because they had it all wrong. 

All of us have met people like this, people who tend to be critical and callous, acting somewhat set apart from others. Perhaps sometimes we also slip into this behaviour.

The man judged people who were doing things that we would be upset with as well: theft, violence, cheating on a spouse.

How do you talk about people when they do things you know is wrong, even evil? Do you remember your own failings? Do you see them as a fellow human?

How do you pray about it? 

According to Jesus, humility is essential to be truly human.

Another man went to pray as well. He too stood apart from others but he did so waiting to be reconciled.

A humble person understands that they are connected to other people and to God. This leads to accountability. An honest connection to God means admitting that God, who sees everything, has seen us fail morally.

A humble person knows their place:

God is the one who can restore relationship once it has been broken.

The man who was convinced in himself did not ask God for anything. As a result, God really had no part in his life. 

Humility might also turn out to be far more effective than self-esteem in reducing anxiety and increasing well-being. In his letter to the church in Colossae, Paul connected humility with the virtues of compassion, kindness, gentleness and patience. He implied that the main way we grow in humility is by forgiving others.

Love, Paul wrote, binds these virtues and habits together and Jesus’ peace rules in our hearts.

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