43 Signs That You Need More Humility, According to St. Francis and St. Josemaría

Copied from: 43 Signs That You Need More Humility, According to St. Francis and St. Josemaría by Angelo Stagnaro

And to help us on our own Path of Righteousness, St. Josemaría Escrivá, the founder of Opus Dei, described 17 ways people run from humility:

  1. Thinking that what you do or say is better than what others do or say.
  2. Always wanting to get your own way.
  3. Arguing when you are not right or ― when you are ― insisting stubbornly or with bad manners.
  4. Giving your opinion without being asked for it, when charity does not demand you to do so.
  5. Despising the point of view of others.
  6. Not being aware that all the gifts and qualities you have are on loan.
  7. Not acknowledging that you are unworthy of all honor or esteem, even the ground you are treading on or the things you own.
  8. Mentioning yourself as an example in conversation.
  9. Speaking badly about yourself, so that they may form a good opinion of you, or contradict you.
  10. Making excuses when rebuked.
  11. Hiding some humiliating faults from your director, so that he may not lose the good opinion he has of you.
  12. Hearing praise with satisfaction, or being glad that others have spoken well of you.
  13. Being hurt that others are held in greater esteem than you.
  14. Refusing to carry out menial tasks.
  15. Seeking or wanting to be singled out.
  16. Letting drop words of self-praise in conversation, or words that might show your honesty, your wit or skill, your professional prestige.
  17. Being ashamed of not having certain possessions.

However, with all due respect to one of the great saints of the 20th century, St. Josemaría Escrivá missed a few other telltale signs one is actively avoiding a true spirit of humility. He probably did so in defense of his humility. Here are a few others to consider:

  1. C.S. Lewis reminds us in his Mere Christianity that if we think ourselves not conceited, we are indeed conceited. Lewis explained that humility is not thinking less of ourselves, but thinking of ourselves less.
  2. Being unwilling to admit error.
  3. Not giving serious attention to your need to repent of sins, both past and present.
  4. Pointing out the splinter in the eyes of others while ignoring the log in your eye.
  5. Forgetting, sometimes intentionally, the basic worth of all human beings.
  6. Forgetting, sometimes intentionally, the fact that God loves all human beings no more or less than you.
  7. Imagining that one possesses great academic, intellectual, spiritual and/or moralistic accomplishments upon where none have been granted or bestowed.
  8. Considering oneself too learned to learn or to wise to gain wisdom.
  9. Presuming upon one’s great wisdom and erudition.
  10. Insisting upon having the last word.
  11. Being more concerned about your own feelings than those of others.
  12. Being more concerned about your own feelings rather than the facts.
  13. Devastating someone emotionally and rationalizing it by saying, “I’m just being honest,” or “She deserved it.”
  14. When you honestly believe the rules don’t apply to you including the rules that you insist others follow.
  15. Insisting upon your opinion or preference.
  16. Countering an opponent’s argument by saying, “I use to think that but…”
  17. Insisting that others recognize and laud your contributions, even if none exist.
  18. Diminishing the accomplishments of others who are your intellectual, academic, spiritual or moral superiors.
  19. Believing that the ends justify the means.
  20. Refusing to forgive others.
  21. Not being able to admit defeat or wrong even when presented with irrefutable proof.
  22. Lying in order to make a point.
  23. Pretending to speak for experts or pretending experts agree with you.
  24. Presuming every bad event in one’s life is the fault of another or, worse, asking why God punishes you.
  25. Presuming one’s great fortune is the result of one’s “goodness” and status as God’s “favorite.”
  26. Presuming one’s opinions and tastes are objectively correct while those of others are essentially worthless.

Humility is the only path to God. It is the cure to pride and the surest way to keep the devil at bay. Remember the succinct advice the Bible can offer when it comes to what God expects of us:

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