My book will be available Sunday, October 15. For a writer, this has to be one of life’s high points. But, to be honest, I am struggling a bit. This feels less like an accomplishment to me than a moment of truth. I’ve suffered from self-esteem deficits and surpluses all my life. My friends take turns hugging me and shaking their fists at me. You’d think by 63, I’d have figured this out.
Today, as I work on my book announcement and author profiles, I stopped for a cup of coffee. Sitting at the bar in my kitchen, I reached for the book I’ve been reading and sharing with you for months now: Preaching the Luminous Word: Biblical Sermons and Homiletical Essays by Ellen F. Davis. I’d stuck a pencil in the book to mark my place weeks ago. When I opened it, and my eye searched for where I’d left off, I read these sentences:
“But in reality, humility is the very opposite of angry self-denial. Humility means full acceptance of your own talents; and the key word is ‘acceptance’: that is, recognizing those talents for what they are, a gift from God, God’s gift to the world through you. Humility demands that we nurture our talents -- slowly, as they grow to fullness; nurture them patiently, not quite knowing what their full growth will look like. Thomas Aquinas taught: “Humility is nothing other than the patient pursuit of your own excellence.”
Providence. Patience. Pursuit..