"Humility is not justifying oneself immediately in the face of an offense, trying to look good:" if you cannot bear a humiliation, you are not humble ". "This is the golden rule". And "if someone is brave, he can ask, as St. Ignatius teaches us, he can ask the Lord to send him humiliations, to more closely resemble the Lord ".
Vatican City (AsiaNews) - "There is no true humility without humiliation", as Jesus shows, Pope Francis said at Mass this morning at Casa Santa Marta. He was commenting on the humiliation suffered by David, narrated by the First Reading. David, highlighted Francis, is "a great man": he had defeated the Philistine, he had "a noble soul" because twice he could have killed Saul and he had not done it, but he was also a sinner, he had "big sins" : "That of adultery and the murder of Uriah, the husband of Bathsheba," that of the census ". Yet the Church venerates him as a saint "because he let himself be transformed by the Lord, he allowed himself to be forgiven", he repented, and for "that never-easy ability to recognize that he is a sinner: 'I am a sinner'".
In particular, the First Reading focuses on the humiliation of David: his son Absalom "revolts against him". At that moment David does not think "of his own skin" but to save the people, the Temple, the Ark. And he flees: "a gesture that seems cowardly but is courageous".
He wept, walking with his head uncovered and bare feet. But the great David is humbled not only by defeat and flight but also by insult. During the escape, a man, Shimei, insulted him by telling him that the Lord had all the blood of the house of Saul fall on him - "in whose place you reign" - and put the kingdom in the hands of his son Absalom: "here is your ruin - he said - because you are lust for blood ". David lets him do it in spite of his wanting to defend himself: "It is the Lord who inspires him to insult me", perhaps "this insult will move the heart of the Lord and He will bless me". "David ascended the mount of the olive trees".
This, underlined the Pope, is Jesus' prophecy that climbs Calvary to give life: insulted, left aside. The reference is precisely to the humility of Jesus. "At times, we think that humility is going away quietly, maybe going head-down looking at the floor ... but even the pigs walk with their heads down: this is not humility. This is that fake humility, shop bought humility, which neither saves nor guards the heart. It would do us good to think this: there is no true humility without humiliation, and if you are not able to tolerate, to bear a humiliation on your shoulders, you are not humble: you pretend you are, but you are not.”
David lays his sins on his shoulders. "David is a Saint; Jesus, with the sanctity of God, is really Saint", said the Pope, adding:" David is a sinner, Jesus is a sinner but with our sins. But both of them are humiliated ". "There is always the temptation to fight against what slanders us, against what humiliates us, which makes us feel ashamed, like this Shimei. And David says: 'No'. The Lord says: 'No'. That is not the road. The road is that of Jesus, prophesied by David: to you’re your humiliations. 'Perhaps the Lord will look at my affliction and will make me good in exchange for today's curse': to bear hope from humiliations".
Francis concluded with a warning: humility is not justified immediately in the face of the offense, trying to look good: "if you cannot bear a humiliation, you are not humble." "This is the golden rule". "Let us ask the Lord for the grace of humility, but with humiliations. There was that nun who said: 'I am humble, yes, but humiliated, never!' No, no! There is no humility without humiliation. We ask for this grace. And even if someone is brave, he can ask, as St. Ignatius teaches us, he can ask the Lord to send him humiliations, to more closely resemble the Lord ".