There’s this great story at the end of John’s Gospel (“Good News Story”). Jesus is talking to Peter, one of his followers, and Peter makes some remark about a third follower, and wants to know will happen to this other person.
Jesus replies to him, basically, “What’s it to you? Why should you care?”
Part of living in humility is surrendering our pathological need and desire to change other people. To debate them. To assume—without invitation—the role of truth-teller (prophet) or teacher.
We think it’s always our job to correct error, or to share what we “know” in order to “enlighten” others and show them how brilliant we are and how wrong they are.
(Yes, those quotes and italics are intended.)
Some of us, at times are, in fact, called to be teachers and truth-tellers.
But my sense is that most of the time I just want to tell people off and convince them (and myself) that I’m right.
But living a life of humility (and, I daresay, healthy spirituality) requires sometimes listening to the spirit of Jesus say to us, “What’s it to you? Why should you care?”
Everyone is on their own unique journey.
Furthermore, I am only human, and it shouldn’t be a shock or a reach to consider, if only for a moment, that maybe, just maybe I don’t have all the answers.
Sometimes daily, tactical humility involves surrendering my “right” to teach or argue with others, and to trust that they are on their own journey through life.