Updated: Mar 25
Hosted each week by the Faith To Go team in the Episcopal Diocese of San Diego, David Tremaine, Maya Little-Sana and Charlette Preslar, the Faith To Go Podcast highlight themes from the Sunday Gospel reading for you to take into your faith discussions and reflections throughout the week.
From Psychology Today
1) Why does humility seem like a strange concept to us?
2) What are examples of “the competitive reflex”?
3) Does humility mean being unkind to yourself?
4) What is your own definition of humility?
5) Do you think the concept of humility is misunderstood?
Views and Qs: I Am Human
Watch this video together and then use the discussion questions below to reflect as a family.
1) Why does Dr. Angelou say we are to treat the “brute, the bigot, and the batterer” as children of God?
2) If you recognize you are using your energies destructively, what is the first step to using your power constructively?
3) What comes to mind when you hear the quote “I am a human being, and I think nothing that is human can be alien to me”?
4) Who are some of your role models?
5) Why do we tend to say “oh, I could never do that” about other people?
Feast and Faith: Faith and Humility
For this week’s dinner discussion, we are talking about how Jesus tells us to be humble and not to look down on others.
Prayer - Father, we live in such a mean world. It's so easy for us to develop a pride in our piety and look down on others. I can see that tendency in me. Forgive us. Cleanse us. Please help us to humble ourselves before you that we may enjoy the comfort of your mercy rather than the sting of judgment. In Jesus' name, we pray. Amen.
Discussion – If you think that looking down on others was exclusively a First Century phenomenon, think again. This parable speaks loud and clear to Twenty-First Century churches. Listen for what Jesus says to us disciples.
"For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted." (18:14b)
The word "exalt" is Greek hupsoo, "to cause enhancement in honor, fame, position, power, or fortune, 'exalt.' " The word "humble" is Greek tapeinoo, "to cause to be or become humble in attitude, 'humble, make humble.' "
Jesus highlights a paradox of the spiritual life -- exalting oneself leads to humbling, while humbling leads to exaltation. Jesus' brother James carries on this theme when he says: "... But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: 'God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.' " (James 4:6) When we are proud, we distance ourselves from God when all God wants is for us to be in relationship with Him.
1. what ways do Twenty-First Century Christians look down on others? Who are the people we look down on?
2. What does the Pharisee’s prayer and his body language tell us about him?
3. What does the tax collector’s prayer and his body language tell us about him?
4. Who do you identify with the most in this story?
5. What makes us confident in our own righteousness? (18:9) Have you ever known anyone like this? Have you ever been this way yourself? What causes it?
Final nugget – Jesus is laying the groundwork for the kind of people whom God uplifts. The Parable of the Widow and the Unjust Judge (18:1-8) teaches the importance of persistent faith, while this parable teaches the importance of humility before God, and the story of Jesus and the children that follows this (18:15-17) underscores this point. Faith and humility are marks of people who follow Jesus. May they be earmarks of our character, as well!
Stay and Pray: A Devotion for Families at the Close of the Day Each week we feature a way for your family to reflect and pray together. For families with older children this is an at home liturgy for your family to participate in together. It is a daily devotion for families adapted from The Book of Common Prayer.
Before you begin, take a few moments to decide who will read the scripture reading and who will read the collect and closing.
Read the Psalm and Lord's Prayer in unison.
After a moment of silence, begin with the Psalm.
(Read in unison)
1 You are to be praised, O God, in Zion; *
to you shall vows be performed in Jerusalem.
2 To you that hear prayer shall all flesh come, *
because of their transgressions.
3 Our sins are stronger than we are, *
but you will blot them out.
4 Happy are they whom you choose
and draw to your courts to dwell there! *
they will be satisfied by the beauty of your house,
by the holiness of your temple.
5 Awesome things will you show us in your righteousness,
O God of our salvation, *
O Hope of all the ends of the earth
and of the seas that are far away.
6 You make fast the mountains by your power; *
they are girded about with might.
7 You still the roaring of the seas, *
the roaring of their waves,
and the clamor of the peoples.
8 Those who dwell at the ends of the earth will tremble at your marvelous signs; *
you make the dawn and the dusk to sing for joy.
9 You visit the earth and water it abundantly;
you make it very plenteous; *
the river of God is full of water.
10 You prepare the grain, *
for so you provide for the earth.
11 You drench the furrows and smooth out the ridges; *
with heavy rain you soften the ground and bless its increase.
12 You crown the year with your goodness, *
and your paths overflow with plenty.
13 May the fields of the wilderness be rich for grazing, *
and the hills be clothed with joy.
14 May the meadows cover themselves with flocks,
and the valleys cloak themselves with grain; *
let them shout for joy and sing.
(read by assigned person)
Jesus told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous and regarded others with contempt: "Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee, standing by himself, was praying thus, `God, I thank you that I am not like other people: thieves, rogues, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give a tenth of all my income.' But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even look up to heaven, but was beating his breast and saying, `God, be merciful to me, a sinner!' I tell you, this man went down to his home justified rather than the other; for all who exalt themselves will be humbled, but all who humble themselves will be exalted."
Prayers for Ourselves and For Others (take this time to each offer one person/event that you would like to hold in prayer as well as one thing you are thankful for)
Dear God, tonight I ask your prayers for.......
and I give you thanks for ..........
The Lord’s Prayer
(read in unison)
Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be thy Name,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those
who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power, and the glory,
for ever and ever.
(read by assigned person)
Almighty and everlasting God, increase in us the gifts of faith, hope, and charity; and, that we may obtain what you promise, make us love what you command; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Share some of your conversations in the comments below: