There are many things that our students should be proud of from this term. I have seen students investigating bungee jumps in Mathematics in a deep and thoughtful way. I have watched students performing and speaking in front of their peers, in some cases for the first time. I have witnessed our students representing the College in finals of their sporting competitions. There will also be many reasons for them to be proud of their academic achievement as we finish off another term.
With the many things that our students should be proud of, it was interesting when one student said to me, “Sir, when we do well, we can’t get too proud of ourselves. We need to be humble.” What struck me was that it was said almost as though they were embarrassed of their achievements, almost belittling them.
Whilst remaining humble in context is important, there is more to humility than belittling our achievements or being embarrassed of them.
The humility that we read about in the New Testament (Philippians 2:5-8) says:
In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
Jesus did not lose his greatness when he died on the cross. In fact, it is was his greatness, his equality with God that gave him the opportunity to serve others and die for us. Jesus showed humility by using his greatness to serve others, not to serve himself. If we follow the example of Jesus, humility is not about belittling ourselves, but thanking God for what he gives us and thinking more about how we use what God gives us to serve others.
There are many things that our students should be proud of this term. Their achievements should be acknowledged and celebrated. Our hope is that our students show humility by being thankful for what God has given them, and following Jesus’ example by using those gifts and talents in the service and interest of others.
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. Philippians 2:3-4
Head of Teaching and Learning – Middle Phase