This past weekend, I started reading a terrific new book by Jim Manney. God Finds Us is all about the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius, something near and dear to my heart.
As it turns out, early this morning I was reading the chapter entitled “It’s Supposed to Be Hard,” and the focus is on what Ignatius had to say about humility.
While I was sitting in my living room, a friend called me. “Did you hear about the pope? He’s going to resign.” Wow. That’s big, big news, and I’m sure that as time goes on, we’ll have a better understanding as to the reasons why Pope Benedict has made this momentous decision.
As I sat thinking, I turned back to the little book next to me. Something clicked, and I realized that humility must have a lot to do with the pope’s decision. I focused on the line “…are you humble enough to go forward with Christ in the face of the worst thing you can think of?”
Citing his own frailty, Pope Benedict XVI becomes the first pope since the Middle Ages to step down. I’m sure he has struggled greatly with this decision. A humbling experience to be sure.
But go forward he does, trusting that the God who called him to this ministry has other plans for him. No one is sure exactly what those plans are, but now is a time to trust in Divine Providence.
Although most of us tend to run from humility and humbleness, St. Ignatius reminds us that it’s often the hard things in life that make us great. The next time I have to make a tough decision, I plan to take my time, discern, and pray a whole lot more than I normally do. How about you?