““But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’”
The tax collector had a deep knowledge of his sin, and a realistic, humbling picture of who God is. In light of who God is, the tax collector was humbled to the place of genuine repentance, and could sincerely ask God to have mercy on him, a sinner.
How do we view ourselves? Do we have a healthy dose of reality when it comes to the holiness of God? Do we know our place in light of His majesty, and are we awed by His incredible love for us, that He would come to Earth to take our sin upon Himself? Does that sin that nailed our Savior to the cross give us a sense of humility that draws us to repent of sin, even sin that seems comfortable and safe?