How to Tell if Someone is Genuinely Humble or Just Pretending

The proof of truth is usually after a test.


Joshua Idegbere

3 years ago | 2 min read

Yesterday I saw something that revealed the definition of genuine humility to me.

I followed my brother to his church yesterday. In the chorister stand, there were two young ladies. Both of them seem to be the star singers in the group. One was light-complexioned, and the other was dark.

Another reason they stood out was, they were the prettiest in the group. So pretty that I couldn’t take my mind and eyes off the two of them throughout the service. Even as I write this, the memory of their faces is still as fresh.

But I also observed something else as the service progresses:

The dark-complained lady rarely smiled and has an air of pride around her. She looked at the rest choristers, especially the not too talented ones, with disdain and with a touch of disrespect for the choir leaders when asked to undertake a task.

It pissed me up at a point. “Who does she even think she is?” I thought to myself at some points.

It was a different scenario for the second lady. She wore a pleasant smile each time she was singing. Did her best to assist others when she notices someone was going off key.
She was very cheerful. It seemed she was floating in a pool of joy.

It blew me away. Her attitude towards life and the rest members of the group nothing less than amazing.

Later on, my eyes landed on another lady, also a chorister. She also wore a smile and seems to have a pleasant air around her. But she was not much of a talented singer like the first two ladies, and also not as pretty.

My mind kept orbiting around the situation and the three ladies from the close of the service till I got home. I knew there was a lesson that life wanted me to learn from the experience.

On getting home, I went straight to my room to have some time alone. Then it happened: A question popped up in my head. The words came out slowly with a gentle voice:

“Which of the three girls do you think were genuinely humble?”
“Two” I answered.
“ Only one was genuinely humble.” The voice responded.
“How?” I asked
And it went on to explain:
“Genuine humility is choosing not to be proud when you have everything it takes to be.”
“The third lady was humble. Yes. But she wasn’t that beautiful and not much of a talented singer.”
“The light-complexioned lady was beautiful, talented and endowed with a perfect body. She has all it takes to be proud, but chose rather to be humble. That is genuine humility.”

There is no other way I could have understood the lesson of humility. And I just had to share it with you, my friend.

Final thought

Do not be deceived. You can never be sure that something is authentic until after a test.

If you want to find out if someone is genuinely humble, provide them with every reason to be proud. If they still choose to be humble, only then can you be sure they genuinely are.

The proof of truth is usually after a test. Only after the test can you be sure whether or not it is original.

Thanks for reading.


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Joshua Idegbere

I am Joshua Idegbere and this is my column. Stories with actionable tips to help you make the most of your life, career and relationships. Welcome!







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