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Revelations: Recognize what humility can do

April 29, 2011 at midnight
Updated April 28, 2011 at 11:29 p.m.

Jennifer Preyss

BY JENNIFER PREYSS

There's something so exhilarating about being in the presence of someone who has been humbled by God. It's a rare occurrence, but impossible to mistake. There's an air about them; an ability to look you in the eye; a sincere gaze in another direction when they recall who they once were, what they once did and what led them to where they are now.

For these reasons and many others, a real occasion with humility makes my heart go pitter patter.

The other day, I had the pleasure of meeting Robert, a man I'm writing about for next week's Faith section. After many years of dealing drugs and living a life of extreme drug-driven wealth, he submitted to God's will and gave up everything to follow Him.

Robert's life hit an all-time rock-bottom when his second wife, whom he married while she was serving time in prison, became heavily addicted to cocaine. When she was released, her addiction took over, and she became pregnant with another man's baby. Meeting the ultimate crossroad, Robert was confronted with a choice about where he wanted his life to go. Where he ended up going, was to church. He was unemployed then, and ended spending day after day at the church, praying to a God he hadn't thought of or spoken to for most of his life. And at some point, God took hold of his heart.

It wasn't long after leaving his former life that he started to lose everything - his home, his car, fancy gold jewelry. But in the end, he gained something sweeter: a relationship with God and a profound peace of mind.

And when he spoke to me of his former life, the things he described as tragically evil, he emotionally thanked God for having mercy on him, and forgiving the man he once was.

It was difficult to not jump up and hug him while he wiped the tears from his eyes. It was difficult to contain my own tears.

Even my photographer - who's open about her non-belief in God - couldn't help but feel the presence of Robert's obvious humility.

Perhaps I related to his story because I, too, once walked very far from the Lord. Or perhaps I related to Robert because I remember how difficult it is was to give up everything I knew, including my friends and belongings, to follow my beliefs and live a life more ordinary.

Or perhaps I simply recognized the power of God's ability to humble a person's heart.

Either way, Robert inspired me to recognize the weight of what a little humility can do in my life. Heaven knows, I need it.

Jennifer Preyss is a reporter for the Victoria Advocate. You can reach her at 361-580-6535 or jpreyss@vicad.com.

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