I had to learn the difference between humbling myself and humility.
Growing up as a sexually abused child, as well as other abuses, I felt humiliated by what I thought that made me be. As a child I was humiliated by my clothing, my glasses, my teeth (very crooked then), and just my appearance and bearing, even though then I didn’t know what bearing meant.
It took years of abuse, and then years of what I thought of as failure, and what I thought that years of alcoholism, to make me feel very humiliated. I did not know about humility.
Many years of psycho-therapy did not change how I felt about myself down deep.
Then, when stories of abuse started coming out, I finally felt that I belonged somewhere, that I was somebody. I was wrong.
After being diagnosed with MS and eventually needing an aide to do some things for me, in order to continue to live by myself, I finally got an aide who was the wife of a pastor. I didn’t want to hear about anything relating to religion, God, or churches. I didn’t need that. Again, I was wrong.
One day I asked my aide if I could try going to her church, and she gladly picked me up every week so that I could go. I got better emotionally, and started feeling proud of myself, my past, and getting to where I then was. I thought that was where it ended. Again, I was wrong.
More than once, I was knocked off my high horse, as my mother used to say, and discover that what my past had been like, and what I thought of as overcoming it made me I started to feel pride. Going to church, accepting Jesus as my savior, and confessing my sins, made me feel proud to be where I was, to sing on the Worship Team, to make new friends, I was right up there beside God.
Uh oh. When I started skipping church, because I no longer needed it, I fell back into old habits, bad habits. I had to humble myself, and confess again and again and again, that I had fallen like I had, that I first felt the stirrings of humility.
Now, I’m a gold medalist in several wheelchair adaptive sports, coming home, proud of what I had accomplished. Every time I get to this point, I realize that it wasn’t me. It was God in me, that allowed me to get to where I was.
Now, in order to humble myself, I have to remember that if it weren’t for God, I wouldn’t even be here. Without God, I wouldn’t have made the changes in my life that I’ve made, or make the accomplishments that I have made.
I have to talk with someone more knowledgeable than myself, and also get down on my knees, and confess again, that I have gone astray, that I have sinned, and that I’m nothing without God. I make myself accountable through others, and to God.
I usually have to do this every day or two, praying for God to forgive me and ‘knock me off my high horse.”