“Walk humbly with your God…”
How do you carry yourself?
Do you have swagger?
Do you hold your head high? On mission?
Is your gait timid and nervous or confident and bold?
Do you walk in peace and kindness?
Or do you walk in such a way to look out for number one (you)?
Of course, it's a metaphor: walk humbly with your God. And it represents our journey through life; how we approach and live through and alongside situations and people.
To become a Rabbi, Jewish boys had to complete four rounds of education. At the end of each round, only the best of the best were chosen to continue their studies, when at the end of their schooling and they would become a Rabbi’s disciple.A disciple followed their Rabbi everywhere. Their aim was not only to learn their Rabbi's ways and teachings, but to embody and become them. They used to say somewhat of a benediction to a disciple: “May you be covered in the dust of your Rabbi.”
It was a picture of their practical and spiritual journey… as they followed the Rabbi everywhere, closely, they would get covered in his dust. They would ‘wear' where their Rabbi had been. They walked his steps, his stories, his teachings, his life. It was a humble undertaking. It showed that not only were they learning, but they willing to do so.
“Humility opens you up to be needed and to need others – contribution and participation. God created us for relationship; community makes us strong.”
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The Mishnah in Avot 1:4 says (The Mishnah is a collection of rabbinic thought from 200 BC to 200 AD that still forms the core of Jewish belief today), “Let thy house be a meeting-house for the wise; and powder thyself in the dust of their feet; and drink their words with thirstiness.”
“Walk humbly with your God.” Powder yourself in the dust of his feet; and drink his words with thirstiness. A perpetual student embodying the master as we journey on. Each turn in the road revealing something, something more to learn and become.
When Jesus walked the earth, he talked about “The Way.” A new way, a re-born-resurrected way, for humanity to walk: with humility.
This open hands and open heart precept; this ‘always learning and being led' mentality – makes us strong. YEP, humility IS strength. It provides room for wisdom to grow, it creates opportunities for you to learn, and space to hone and acquire new skills. It helps you stand boldly and confidently after you’ve fallen and it allows you to ask for help. Humility opens you up to be needed and to need others – contribution and participation. God created us for relationship; community makes us strong.
How you “walk” influences what you see, learn and hear, and impacts how you approach people and situations. So take care to notice.
Want to know how to live well? Walk humbly… covered in dust.
Written by Liz Milani