The Pharisee and the Tax collector. The exalted are humbled, the humble are exalted 
In the history of the Church, we find no small number of people who, though laymen, have dedicated themselves through virtue to various offices which, in the judgment of the world appear menial, but in the spirit of religion and the spiritual life, are great and special in the eyes of God. 
However, to guard and to increase the holy gifts granted to us by God, let us not cease, my dearest in Jesus Christ, to ground ourselves in holy humility. This virtue is the basis for every good work, the source of every heavenly blessing and the ladder to heaven. We are worth something only because of the aggregate of God's gifts given to us. ... God wants us to cultivate those gifts that he has given to us. So, continue to advance both in your spiritual life as well as in your acquisition of knowledge, since we, as priests, must be "lux mundi et sal terrae." ... I wish that your days, as well as my own, will be days full of merit, virtue and holiness. May Jesus be our delight, our peace, our comfort. 
When we focus on ourselves, the temptation may be to compare ourselves with others. As a temptation it would lead us to compare ourselves with those who are, in some superficial ways, less than we are. A certain blindness would prevent us from comparing ourselves with those who, in no less superficial ways, are greater than we are. At any rate, that is all we can compare, external, changeable, temporal qualities.
On the other hand, when we compare ourselves with God, we are left only with humility because there is no comparison. And everything we have and are is a gift from God. Gaspar reminds us that some of these external things may seem to be little in our eyes, but in God's eyes and in view of his gifts they are great. Grounded in humility we are closer to the truth and to what God has done. God has desired to be in relationship with us, and has come to us for this very purpose. Yet too often we get distracted by these external things, and even make them the measure of our spiritual life. We have to ask ourselves if we wish to be great in the eyes of the world, or great friends with God.
- How much time did I spend with my friend today?
- How often do I compare myself with others?
- What internal gifts does God wish to cultivate in me?
 see also Tuesday, week two of Lent
 from Letter 1157 to Fr. Luigi Gonnelli, June 17, 1825, Resources 8, pg 18
 from Letter 1206 to Fr. Antonio Loffreda, July 15, 1825, Resources 8, pg. 19