All who humble themselves will be exalted…

Matthew 23:12  12All who exalt themselves will be humbled, and all who humble themselves will be exalted.


  • Light a candle to remember Christ’s presence with you.
  • Sit in silent meditation 5 to 15 minutes paying attention to the breath.
  • Focus on the photograph above.  Spend 3 to 5 minutes opening yourself to this image.
  • What word or phrase captures your attention in the image?
  • With whom do you most identify in the image?
  • What freedom do you feel in the image?
  • What tension or bondage do you feel in the image?
  • Spend another 3 to 5 minutes opening yourself to the image.  This image was captured 48 hours after the massive earthquake in Turkey.
  • What hope do you encounter here?
  • Where do you encounter humility?
  • Where do you encounter exaltation?
  • Who are you in the image?
  • Is there a message from God to you?
  • Is there a call to action?
  • Give thanks to God for this time in humble remembrance and thanksgiving.  Give thanks to God for anything new that has been revealed to you.
  • Share as you feel led in the reply box below.

Revised Common Lectionary Readings for Sunday, October 30, 2011,  the Thirty-first Sunday in Ordinary Time Year A
Joshua 3:7-17
Psalm 107: 1-7, 33-37
I Thessalonians: 2:9-13
Matthew 23:1-12
If you use these prayers in other groups, please give credit to author.
Permission to use in not-for-profit settings The Rev. Lil Smith, M.Div., DASD

2 thoughts on “All who humble themselves will be exalted…

  1. Can I remember places where certainly, yes, I was humble? Was it there, or there?

    Can I act to humble myself? Would that be humbling, or would it be the conceit of exalting my self?

    Humble is not a particular act, but the quality below action’s sensible surface that grounds us in transcendence. An oxymoron perhaps, and yet humbleness helps us re-member our selves within God’s whole creation.

    Humbleness reconciles neighbors recognizing those places and times where neighbors’ lives touch. Listening to, helping, learning from, becoming in relation to neighbor implies a larger reality beyond the boundaries of individual self. Humbleness asks that we empty ourselves freely in neighborly love rewarding us with shared experience that renews, re-creates and rejuvenates.

    • Lil Smith – Richardson, TX – My simple life… is not simple at all. Yet it is so simple when I let God lead me. I have been married to Greg for 27 years and we have three wonderful children. My simple life is not simple at all. Yet it is so simple when I let God take control. I followed God’s call to begin seminary at Perkins School of Theology in January 2006. I graduated in May 2011. My life is not simple at all. Yet it is so simple when I listen for God’s call. I began the Degree in the Art of Spiritual Direction at San Francisco Theological Seminary in January 2009. I graduated in May 2011. My life is not simple at all. Yet it is so simple when I listen for God's call. I was ordained in the Presbyterian Church USA and spent three amazing years in Pastoral Ministry at Highland Springs Senior Living in Dallas, TX. My life is not simple at all. Yet it is so simple when I listen for God's call. My passion is the Christian Spiritual Life. As a spiritual director and retreat leader, I am so blessed to hear how God is at work in the world. How is God at work in your life?
      PresbyLil

      I hear you speaking from your heart. I particularly am drawn to your phrase, “humbleness helps us re-member our selves within God’s whole creation.” Beautiful…Shalom.

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