“Cultural humility gives up a role as expert, instead seeing ourselves as students of our host culture. “ I came across this quote in a post by Marilyn Gardner on her blog entry here.
Only God knows how I can have this attitude, and still lead, still influence, still change the world. Yet, Jesus did it. He came as God (clearly the expert), but gave up himself and changed the world for all time! The point is, I believe I have much to give to my Haitian brothers and sisters, but I am constantly reminded, and must always remember, that the truth is that they have even more to give to me. Oh Lord, give me the humility of Jesus. He was God, but he changed the world by considering himself less than man by dying on a cross. He died so I can live.
The FIRST step is to listen. The first step is to assume that I am ignorant of how to proceed in this culture, which is very different (not weird) than my own. In order to listen, I must strip myself of my pride, my cultural superiority, my assumption that I am the expert, my assumption that my way is best, the assumption that my ultimate values and goals are right.
Did I come to Haiti to serve, or to be served? I came to serve. I came to lift others above myself.
I believe our influence is directly related to the depth of our humility.