Caitrin Bennett shares her New Year’s resolution to grow in humility, along with the tools she hopes will help her on the journey.
A Humbler Me in ‘23?
I have never really been one for traditional New Year’s resolutions, such as going on a diet or reading more books. However, I came across the idea of working on a virtue for the year, and that resonated with me. The virtue I have chosen for 2023 is humility. I know that growing in humility this year will make me a better Christian, friend, daughter, sister, and mother. I feel especially convicted to work on this virtue, though, because it will make me a better wife.
The marital relationship demands humility. When spouses inevitably butt heads, they need to be humble enough to apologize and forgive one another. Luckily, God has set things up so that marriage and family life are humbling by their very nature. And therein lies my first tool towards growth in this virtue. Allow me to explain.
Embracing the Cringe-worthy
While you might be able to hide some of your rougher edges from a boyfriend or girlfriend, your spouse sees them all. My husband, Chris, has seen me ugly cry, throw up, and pluck hairs off my chin far too many times for me to feel high and mighty around him. He has also watched me struggle and fail countless times as a parent. The very first night home with our first child, as I tried to calm that impossibly tiny, inconsolably screaming baby for the umpteenth time at 2:00 AM, it was obvious that I had no idea what I was doing. And to be honest, parenthood has only gotten more humbling from there: teething, tantrums, and potty training, oh my!
Clearly, humiliation is par for the course in marriage and parenthood. My natural instinct is to fight back against what humbles me or to hide it away. In 2023, though, I want to work on embracing those daily reminders of my lowliness and shortcomings. I am realizing God wants to use those to help me grow in humility. All I have to do is let Him.
So, here’s my simple new prayer: “Thank You, Lord, for sending that gross chin hair/ toddler tantrum I was powerless to calm/(other challenge) today. Please let this humiliation humble me as deeply as possible.”
The Litany of Humility
There is another longer and much more eloquent prayer I hope teach me humility this year, too: the Litany of Humility. It is immediately convicting: just glancing over the prayer, I can see that I definitely need Jesus to deliver me from “the desire of being esteemed … the desire of being preferred to others … the fear of being forgotten … the fear of being ridiculed.”
I know that I cannot become humble on my own, but if I pray this litany daily, God will surely bestow the grace I need. He loves to give good gifts to His children, and humility is such a good gift!
Jesus, Meek and Humble of Heart
Jesus is the ultimate example of humility; a humility so deep that we cannot even hope to comprehend it. He humbled Himself to be born a helpless human baby in a manger full of dirty animals and straw. He was raised by peasants and trained in the humble art of carpentry. He befriended tax collectors, prostitutes, and lowly fishermen; He got down on His knees as their servant to wash their feet; and, finally, He gave His very life for them after being brutally beaten and mocked. If the Lord of the Universe did all that, who am I to hold onto any arrogance or pride?
In 2023, I will be praying the Litany of Humility, and embracing the daily humiliations that God is using to chisel away at my pride. My aim is to become a humbler Christian and a better wife and mother. I would love for you to join me!
Copyright 2023 Caitrin Bennett
About the Author
Caitrin Bennett is a military wife and homeschooling mama of three young children. Her blog at HolierMatrimony.com combines two of her passions: sharing the Church’s beautiful teachings on marriage, and creative writing. Caitrin hopes to one day publish her own book on married saints and Catholic marriage.