Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Empowerment of Humility

Today was quite the rushed day at school! I had bus duty in the morning, so I didn't really have time to prepare for the upcoming day. The day was already off to a slow start, and there were TONS of things I needed to do to start any lesson, and the kids were getting restless. I was not in too happy a mood. We were about ready to practice their multiplication facts when the door opened.

A man walked in, holding a giant box. He handed me the box, and simply said, "Oscar". Oscar is of one of my kids, so I presumed it was for Oscar and the man was his dad or guardian and he simply didn't speak English. Upon further examination of the box, I noticed a post-it attached to it. It read: To: Mrs. Isom From: Oscar.

I looked at Oscar and said, "Is this for me?" This sweet little boy simply nodded. The box was full of school supplies! Last week, I had sent a 'wish list' out to all the parents. My list was very simple. It was about 10 items or so, and all of them cost less than a dollar at Wal-Mart. Our school community is so impoverished, and I'd be lucky to get anything at all. It had already been a week, and no one and brought in anything from the list, which didn't surprise me. So, when Oscar's dad came in with that both of supplies, I was blown away.

The kids were so excited, too! They wanted me to show them every item in the box, and after every item, there was a resounding, "Whoa!" coming from the class. They were so grateful, they wanted to give Oscar a round of applause for bringing it in. Now, keep in mind, I'm sure all the supplies didn't cost no more than $10 altogether, but the way they wanted to show their gratitude(we're making thank-you cards tomorrow for Oscar's family), it was truly humbling.

It made me think of humility, and how my kids are an example to me of being grateful for everything I have been given. I looked up on the LDS website, and searched the word 'humility', and came up with this amazing talk by Richard C. Edgley in the November 2003 issue of the Liahona.

In it he says, "Humility and gratitude are truly the twin characteristics of happiness. In the kingdom of God, greatness begins with humility and submissiveness."

I thought about this quote a lot. I think sometimes, we as human beings think, "If I only bought this, than I would be happy." We, as members of the church are brought up to believe real happiness comes from love, family, Jesus Christ, and the relationships we build here on Earth. I have never thought humility brought happiness, and now I find myself suddenly jealous of my students. They have learned humility at such a young age, and that will help them throughout their whole lives, and in some ways, they will be happier. I love how anyone can teach you something, even if your job is to teach them.


  1. What a great reminder to us all that we need to show more humility in our lives. That sure makes me feel spoiled. I can't wait to read the talk! It's in my pile to read during my morning devotional tomorrow.

  2. How lovely! Isn't it amazing how those who seem to have less than us generally tend to give more? I don't quite understand why it works that way, but people with nothing seem to be more willing to share what little they have, and those of us with much tend to be stingy with our possessions. Thank you for such a wonderful lesson in humility!

  3. To continue with what Amy was saying- yeah its one of those ironies in life. One of those things that shouldn't make sense but somehow it just works that way.

  4. What a sweet story! Thanks for sharing.



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