BY LEANN DILBECK –
I’ve heard most of my life the phrase of “taking pride in what you do,” but the older I get the more I realize that pride is the root of so many behaviors that are very unbecoming to Christians.
Pride feeds self. It feeds the flesh…and the cost can be great in many aspects of our life. The closer we learn to walk with our Almighty Father, we die to self along with our selfish desires. Instead, they are replaced with the desires of what is righteous and glorifying to God. The closer we walk with Him, we begin to see that they are not sacrifices but rather privileges that ultimately bring great joy knowing that we are living a life that is pleasing and honoring to our Heavenly Father. To live humbly symbolizes our faith in the Father; whereas, a prideful lifestyle symbolizes our faith in man or ones own self.
Pride can be quite expensive during the course of a lifetime…costing us loved ones, costing us financially, costing us blessings…and unfortunately, for some, costing them eternally. “then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God…” Deuteronomy 8:14.
Pride tells you that you don’t need anyone or anything. Pride cannot be confused with being self-sufficient or confident. Pride denies those that we love and care for from hearing words like ‘I love you’ or ‘I’m sorry’ or ‘I need you’ when they need to hear them because afterall, you are above that. “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud…” 1 Corinthians 13:4.
Pride can be mean-spirited and critical because it feeds the soul that you are “better,” not weak and vulnerable. By ripping others down, pride boosts the self to feel far superior because after all, you never make mistakes. “On account of the sin of their mouth and the words of their lips, let them even be caught in their pride, And on account of curses and lies which they utter…” Psalm 59:12.
Pride is all knowing and has no desire to learn more because after all, we already know all there is to know about almost every subject known so why listen to what someone may be excited to know or happy to share. “When pride comes, then comes dishonor, but with the humble is wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2
Pride pushes you to continually be in comparison with the next person so that you can repeatedly be assured of how you are better, your ways are superior, and your thoughts are the only ones that matter. “Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else, for each one should carry his own load.” Galatians 6:4
Pride can prevent us from accepting opportunities from God to provide for our families because we feel we are too experienced, seasoned or educated to take jobs that we consider “beneath” us. “But when his heart became arrogant and hardened with pride, he was deposed from his royal throne and stripped of his glory.” Daniel 5:20
We read through these examples and immediately think of one person or another that we know that acts like this at one time or another … but what about the times we act like this? Before we are so quick to go pulling weeds from the neighbor’s garden, perhaps we need to weed our own.
Any act of pride positions us to be humbled by the One who is more than able to, “The LORD detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.” Proverbs 16:5
Humility is a gift. A gift that allows us to show Christ-like behavior to a broken world in need of the saving grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. “He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Micah 6:8
Pride flourishes in our current society that continually says, “It’s all about me.” There are many that may believe they are so self-sufficient, that they fail to acknowledge the One with whom all provisions come from. They fail to find the strength and wisdom that can be found on their knees in humility before the Great Provider. In all their self-sufficient shining glory, they may even fail to admit they are in desperate need of being saved and accepting the One who died for them. “For the Lord takes delight in His people; He crowns the humble with salvation.” Psalm 149:4
Invest in His kingdom with a spirit of humility rather than thoughtlessly costing yourself a wealth of blessings and eternity.
All for His Glory –