Jesus, please, make me a good donkey

man leading donkey

Man Leading a Donkey in Front of the Palais de Justice, Tangier, by Henry Ossawa Tanner, 1912, the first African-American painter to gain international acclaim. He moved to Paris in 1891 to study, and decided to stay there, being readily accepted in French artistic circles. His painting entitled Daniel in the Lions’ Den was accepted into the 1896 Salon.

“In the difficulties which are placed before me, why should I not act like a donkey?

  • When one speaks ill of him – the donkey says nothing.
  • When he is mistreated – he says nothing.
  • When he is forgotten – he says nothing.
  • When no food is given him – he says nothing.
  • When he is made to advance – he says nothing.
  • When he is despised – he says nothing.
  • When he is overburdened – he says nothing.

The true servant of God must do likewise, and say with David: ‘Before Thee I have become like a beast of burden.'” ~ Saint Alphonsus Rodriguez

Our Lord says that, no matter what, we will say: “I only did what I had to do.” And I say, “I am just so very far from that. I wish I could say that.”

This bit from Saint Alphonsus Rodriguez is the thing I need for an examination of conscience. I am not worthy to be the donkey that I am. I am tempted so that…


  • when someone speaks ill of me – I speak ill of others;
  • when I am mistreated – I respond in kind;
  • when I am forgotten – I make sure everyone takes note;
  • When no food is given to me – I nevertheless eat all I can;
  • When I am made to advance – I say that it’s the wrong path;
  • When I am despised – people will be afraid to do that again;
  • When I am overburdened – I find even more things to do, or do nothing.


The mistake I am tempted to make is to take myself seriously. No donkey ever does that. Dear Lord. Please. That I might be a true donkey.


Filed under Donkeys

2 responses to “Jesus, please, make me a good donkey

  1. sanfelipe007

    This is how pride is dulled; humility sharpened.

  2. elizdelphi

    “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
    “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
    “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
    “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
    “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.
    “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
    “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
    “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
    “Blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so men persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

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