mercredi, mars 14, 2007

puffed up like a big balloon.
I have applied all these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, brothers, that you may learn by us not to go beyond what is written, that none of you may be puffed up in favor of one against another. For who sees anything different in you? What do you have that you did not receive? If then you received it, why do you boast as if you did not receive it?~ 1 cor 4:6-7

There is someone dear to me in my life. I love her very much, but her life saddens me. This person has so much pride in her life that it consumes her. She is highly competitive, and dislikes anyone who is better than her. She pushes away anyone who desires to love her, because she refuses to submit to almost any authority. Yet, she is lonely. I can hear it too often in her voice. She doesn't understand why people might not like her, but if you suggest that it might be pride, she denies it and is incensed.
I have often looked at the life of said person. I really do love her, I have loved her ever since the day I met her, but I have often hoped that I would never be like her. I've thought about how lonely it must be, and how bitterness comes so easily yet leaves so slowly because pride sustains and feeds bitterness.

Recently, I looked in the mirror, and I saw this person staring back. I hadn't realized it, but I have become the person I never wanted to be. A day earlier, two of my friends had called me a snob, and it felt like a punch in the stomach. A knife in the chest. I wondered why it hurt so much. When I looked in the mirror, I realized that it hurt because it was true. I am the most prideful person you will ever meet, and I struggle with pride on a second by second basis.

Prov 11:2
When pride comes, then comes dishonour, but with the humble is wisdom.

Prov 29:23
One's pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honour.

Is 10:12-13
So it will be that when the Lord has completed all His work on Mount Zion and on Jerusalem, He will say, "I will punish the fruit of the arrogant heart of the king of Assyria and the pomp of his haughtiness. For he has said, 'By the power of my hand and by my wisdom I did this.'"

Mark 7:22-23
...coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within and they defile a person.

Pride comes in so many different forms. It can come in the form of plain old arrogance, akin to that mentioned in Isaiah 10. Or, it can come in the form of fear. Beginning the support raising process has pointed me to this form of pride in my life. I fear asking people because I fear rejection. I place my own "self-esteem" over God's call, and am disbelieving because I trust my own self and actions more than I trust God's provision and sovereign hand. Pride can come in the form of fearing man, rather than fearing God (a la Matt 10:28). Pride can come in the form of unforgiveness or disappointment due to unmet expectations, because I see myself as deserving something more, though all I deserve is death.

Here's something I found really convicting.

My Name is Pride

my name is Pride. I am a cheater.
I cheat you of your God-given destiny ... because you demand your own way.
I cheat you of contentment ... because you "deserve better than this".
I cheat you of knowledge ... because you already know it all.
I cheat you of healing ... because you're too full of me to forgive.
I cheat you of holiness ... because you refuse to admit when you're wrong.
I cheat you of vision ... because you'd rather look in the mirror than out a window.
I cheat you of genuine friendship ... because nobody's going to know the real you.
I cheat you of love ... because real romance demands sacrifice.
I cheat of you greatness in heaven ... because you refuse to wash another's feet on earth.
I cheat you of God's glory ... because I convince you to seek your own.
my name is Pride. I am a cheater.
you like me because you think I'm always looking out for you. untrue.
I'm looking to make a fool of you.
God has so much for you, I admit, but don't worry ...
if you stick with me
you'll never know.

~Beth Moore

4 commentaires:

Son of Man a dit...

c.J. preached on the 1 Cor 4 passage. The sermon is available. (resolved 07 website) I could listen to it a million times. If ever there was a case to be made for biblical satire, that is it.

Jess a dit...

hmmm that poem strikes too much of a resemblance to me.

Lydia a dit...

yeah, JR, i heard his least, i think its the same one he preached at Cov Life.

Justin Alm a dit...

These are powerful words that I can identify with. I'm still learning how to live a humble life but I've only experienced a couple fleeting moments of humility in...I don't know how long.