Zephaniah, a seventh century B.C. prophet provides encouraging words (3:1-2, 9-13) to anyone who feels as if they are a part of rapidly shrinking “remnant” of those who put full faith in God in these troubling times. His prescription, as is the advice of so many biblical authors and figures, not the least of whom is Jesus Himself, is to be humble. That is, to acknowledge the truth of the Lord’s greatness and the problem of our own faults all the while taking refuge in God’s mercy through confession and penance, prayer and fasting.
It should not be difficult to be humble as we consider the incarnation and birth of Jesus during this time of preparation. The Holy Spirit descends upon a lowly peasant girl and the Son of God becomes man. Then He is born in a stable. He goes on to live a life of profound humility dying ignominiously.
Is it so hard to be humble when God Himself condescends to the level of a lowly creature? This is worth remembering and reinforcing at this time which marks the beginning of the liturgical year so this attitude remains with us the whole year through.
In humility Christ saved the world. We must follow that example profoundly if we wish to do the same.