Benefits of humility in life according to the Bible

Benefits of humility in life according to the Bible

Lewis Carroll in his famous book “Alice in Wonderland” said, “True humility is not thinking less of yourself; it is thinking of yourself less”. What is humility and what are the benefits of humility? Read in the article below.

Benefits of humility in life

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What does it mean to have humility?

Acting with humility has many benefits to human life. It is helpful in reducing any negative impact. In the present day society, overconfidence seems to be much more popular than humility. The present-day society celebrates entitlement, overconfidence, an idea of focusing on the self. Because of this, people are more and more competitive, obsessed with their appearance, narcissistic and so on.

A lack of humility actually does more harm than good. Humility is not about pleasing other people or putting yourself down. The art of being a humble and kind person is about becoming a more harmonious individual. As said above, humility is not only thinking of yourself less.

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The idea of being humble is not new in psychology. Only recently psychologists started to conduct research on how exactly humility affects the brain. A key study was performed by psychologist Pelin Kesebir who stated that there are some psychological benefits to humility. In this study, Kesebir describes humility as “a quiet ego” and explains that “humility involves a willingness to accept self’s limits and its place in the grand scheme of things, accompanied by low levels of self-preoccupation”. The poet Tennyson once said that humility is, “the highest virtue, the mother of them all”.

To put it simply, a humble person is a person with a calm sense of self-mastery. Such a person knows what he/she can do well and what they are bad at. What is an essential trait of a humble person is that he or she never seeks praise or confirmation from others?

Studies also show that humble people have a high level of self-control which is the most crucial personal trait of many successful people. This is perhaps humble people usually know their limits. Such people are less likely to drive fast, drink alcohol, take up bad habits, and so on.

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Besides the psychological benefits, humility also deals with our sense of mortality. We all will die eventually, and we cannot do anything about it. So, all we can do is to face the circumstances that take place in our lives. Humbler people accept death more easily and use their own inevitable death to think how to live their lives as better as possible.

True humility is often caused by selflessness. Humility is considered a virtue both by theologians and psychologists. You might hear that being humble, calm, kind is the "right thing to do", however, it is not always clear why. If this doesn't convince you, consider the fact that not only confidence but humility can help you get ahead in your life.

Also, being humble is good for your health. If you need more reasons for why humility can help you make your life easier and what emotional, mental and social benefits it may bring, keep reading.

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Dimensions of humility

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The benefits of humility according to the Bible

The Bible gives us at least three important reasons to live a humble life. They are the following:

  1. He gives favor to humble. Proverbs 3:34
  2. The reward of humility and the reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord is riches and honor and life. Proverbs 22:4
  3. When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom. Proverbs 11:2

God give us a strength to be a humble person. One could try to imagine how different his life could be without this God’s virtue. It can change everything beginning with marriage, work, education, relationships with close people, and so on. What keeps people from being humble? What keeps them from receiving numerous incredible gifts of God’s favor, honor, blessings, life, and wisdom?

It may be a lack of faith in God. It comes directly from focusing more on what we can see than who He is and what He can do. People sometimes think that the problem is “too big for God”, so they don’t ask for His help which is some kind of self-protection. We are often afraid to be disappointed not to be heard by Him. So we decide that it is better not to talk at all with God about the problem.

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In reality, we compare God’s power to our feeling of powerlessness and problems. We are too self-focused on the weaknesses. We choose to look inward denying His power. In the end, we experience pride. Pride goes before destruction (Proverbs 16:18) while humility goes to the One who overcomes the destruction and the destroyer (John 1:5). Humility is an antonym of pride.

A lack of prayer results in pride. On the other hand, answered prayers are the result of humility and patience. Pride cannot wait on God’s answer. Pride presses ahead because it is too impatient. It is also caused by the fear that His answer can possibly hurt and embarrass.

Humility believes that God is able to lead, His word can light the way to the victory. God supports a humble person when she is waiting. Humility lives in the presence of the crucified Jesus. Humility is a fruit of Jesus’s love and love to Him.

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“Dwell in Me, and I will dwell in you. [Live in Me, and I will live in you.] Just as no branch can bear the fruit of itself without abiding in (being vitally united to) the vine, neither can you bear fruit unless you abide in Me”. John 15:4

Jehoshaphat is one of the great examples of a humble person. He directs his nation to pray despite the fact that 3 armies are waiting to take them out. He obeyed God’s very unusual battle plan:

“You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the Lord will give you, Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the Lord will be with you”. 2 Chronicles 20:17
Humble man

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The mother in 2 Kings 4 is another example of a humble person. When her son died, she courageously proclaimed “all is well” which meant that she is a faith that God can give the life back to her son. She went to Elijah, the man of God, laid on the ground and grabbed Elisha by the feet. She didn’t ask but demanded to give the life of his son back. Her confidence in God was stronger than circumstances.

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“Did I ask you for a son, my Lord? And didn’t I say, ‘Don’t deceive me and get my hopes up’?” 2 Kings 4:28

Moreover, she decided to wait until Elisha agrees to go to her home to change the deadness of her son.

The same attitude is expressed in words “all is well” that can be found in the following verse:

“Tell the godly that all will be well for them. They will enjoy the rich reward they have earned!” Isaiah 3:10

Humility is a natural result of humbling ourselves before God. Fear of God (fear of living without Him) means that we accept His instructions for our lives under His protection.

“For You, Lord, will bless the uncompromisingly righteous him who is upright and in right standing with You; as with a shield You will surround him with goodwill (pleasure and favor)”. Psalm 5:12

Uncompromisingly righteous means living in right standing with God. This means that we allow Him to protect us and surround by His power and favor.

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Humility in the Bible

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Psychological benefits of being humble

Humility is a virtue that is perhaps most often mentioned in the Bible. However, it is also discussed in psychological studies. If you are wondering about what are benefits of humility, they include.

1. Soothing the soul

Humble people are known to cope a little easier with anxiety about mortality. Instead of being afraid of death, humble and kind people are trying to find a useful perspective on life and live it better. Such an approach makes death easier to contemplate.

Humility also gives peace of mind. It helps you to stay away from the stress and pressure of trying to become popular, powerful, and respected by others. Humility can also relieve you from attempts of being more significant. It can make you feel comfortable without lacking self-confidence.

2. Gaining excellence in leadership

Humility is a key to excellent leadership. You might notice that humble leaders are not only better liked but they are much more effective. Humble leadership implies that leaders are able to admit mistakes, spotlight followers’ strengths and find suitable models of teaching. These three behaviors are strong factors of the organization’s growth. Humility creates opportunities to grow as it helps in realizing that as individuals, we still have a lot of room for growth. There are a lot of things to learn and humble person is always open to new possibilities. You might notice that people who lack humility think that they already know everything which often leads to failure.

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3. Increase of self-control

All of us probably dream about having high self-control as it is one of the keys to success. For the reason that humble people place less importance on their selves, they often exhibit high self-control. This can probably be explained by the fact that humble people tend to know their limits.

Interesting that humility is often misunderstood. It is sometimes considered a low opinion of one's worth and abilities. However, theologians and psychologists suggest a different opinion. They claim that humble people are not self-deprecating but rather accurate in the way they regard themselves. This kind of accurate attitude to your own self helps to estimate what are your true talents and limits. While the line between being humble and having low self-esteem is very thin, a true humility gives you a more realistic understanding of your capabilities and strengths and avoid failures and false expectations.

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4. Better work performance

Many studies show that humility can be a valuable trait in the workplace. As a rule humble people make the best employees. When talking about the workplace, humility is often a key trait that every hiring manager is looking out for. Moreover, humble employees more often rise to the managerial position because they are more effective at the job they do. Competition and aggression in the workplace were the key forces in the 1980s. However, leadership is no longer about being overconfident and aggressive. Nowadays, effective leaders are expected to be humble and empathetic.

When talking about school, it is a well-known fact that humble students tend to score better academically. This is because they are more inclined to work hard instead of being the class clown to attract attention. Some theories suggest that humble students are more likely to more objective. Humility is known to promote effective learning and growth by keeping you open to new possibilities. That’s why humble students achieve success faster and easier.

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5. Being more helpful

Humble people tend to be more helpful than people who are self-focused and egotistical. They are more likely to offer help to those in need. No surprise that humble people are usually more generous. Humility guarantees a good social life. If you would be offered to talk to an arrogant person who only talks about himself or to someone who is willing to listen to your ideas and is able to uplift your spirit, who would you choose? A humble person is always a good listener. He/she is more concerned with how they can help you than with focussing on themselves.

being more helpful

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6. Earning people’s respect

Living a humble life and being down-to-earth give you a good social life and other people’s respect. Humble people never give praise to themselves but are appreciated and recognized by other people. Respect is earned and not demanded. If you are truly humble, people notice your good qualities without you asking them for it.

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Also, humble people usually have a less prejudiced view of the world. They are tolerant of others and less defensive about their own beliefs. They accept other people for who they are and not for they want them to be. This way, humility helps to build strong relationships between people and repair them if needed. As you can see, humility offers strong social benefits.

7. Enabling freedom

Having a humble attitude towards life will free you from the stressful need for some elusive "significance” of power, importance, fame, success, and so on. Humility consists in valuing yourself in a way that doesn't depend on becoming better than other people or becoming the best. Rankism that is quite common in our society allows only some of the people to realize their plans, dreams, etc. Humility, on the contrary, allows people to feel okay with themselves.

Humility can affect all aspects of people’s life. It is a virtue that defines how we think, live, work, and interact with people. Humility has great mental and physical health benefits if one accepts it as a way of life.

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