A Character Study on Humility

Lord of the Rings is filled with characters who are great examples of humility. Frodo constantly believes himself unworthy, incapable of carrying the ring, but he carries it none the less. Aragorn worries about becoming a king. He doesn’t believe he deserves it, and even when he becomes one, he humbles himself to the hobbits in front of everyone.

Yes, there are many admirable characters, but I want to talk about Samwise Gamgee. I always felt tied to Sam’s character and often felt defensive of him in the film.

Sam is a “lowly” gardener who is a fiercely loyal friend to Frodo. He isn’t considered much of anyone. Frodo is really the star of the show and Sam is often not listened to or even overlooked.

 

I have felt that way in my life often, overlooked, invisible, unheard, but I do not deal with these things as gracefully and humbly as Samwise does.

Sam only cares about Frodo’s well being, rarely thinking of himself and in trutn, Frodo truly cares for Sam.

The moments of Sam’s humility that stand out for me follow.. Just FYI, I am about to take examples from not only the live action film, but also the cartoon.

I think what’s revealing of Sam’s insecurities is when the ring tempts him (in the cartoon). It shows him a future where he is teh hero, a king, looked up to, famous, noticed. See what I am getting at? Though neither I nor Same care about the riches or power, we both are tempted by the idea of being recognized, looked up to, and cared about. Yet Sam, no matter how tempted, even with all his life going unrecognized for his kindness, hard work, and heroics, throws the ring aside, becase he was meant to help Frodo, not help himself.

Another significant scene in my mind is when Frodo lsitens to Gollum and essentiallybanishes Sam from is life and quest. Up to this point, who was the one person who listened and cared about Sam? – Frodo.

That is a devastating moment. Sometimes I wish Sam would yell at Frodo, “Don’t you remember all I’ve done for you? Stood by your side, protected you no matter what! This is how you thank me?” But Sam just leaves, crying in silence.

Ah, and here is when I think, Oh Sam, give up on Frodo, but Sam, as humble, kind, and courageous as he is, decides to go with Frodo anyways. No one cares about Sam anymore and yet he keeps doing so much food.

The last and most important scene is near the end of the film. The fellowship watches Mount Doom go up in an explosion of lava. They all cry out “Frodo” in pain. How this angers me! Who else is on that mountain? Sam! And yet non of them seem to remember or care about him. Despite that, when Frodo is healed and everyone is excited about his return, in comes Sam, quiet, humble, silently joyful, looking on, not one complaint or even indication that he is hurt by getting overlooked.

What is my point? As I walk with Christ, being shaped by His hands, one of my most difficult struggles is not allowing resentment, anger, hurt, sadness, worthlessness to seep in when I am overlooked. It’s encouraging to remember a character like Sam.

To me, He’s the most noble of all the characters. Why? Because of his humility. He reminds me to focus, focus my love and loyalty, dedication on one being (Frodo for him, Christ for me), and to not care even once that others do not see me. To essentially, also, cry out “Frodo’s” (Christ’s) name when everyone else does. To allow myself to be overlooked, unheard, unnoticed, because the Lord s glad when we do so with joy.

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