Sunday, June 12, 2011

"You Should Be Proud..."

The devil is a wolf who comes in sheep’s clothing. On the words of a friend, he seeps into our lives in the guise of something that’s good, when it’s really evil.

“You should be proud of your achievements…”

When you Google that phrase, there are dozens of pages with quotes of worldly people saying just it as if they hold ultimate authority over the human condition.

Be proud.
Be prideful.
You deserve it.

Fill your mind with thoughts of yourself and how important you are… you are number one, after all…

The word ‘pride’ occurs 69 times in the bible and ‘proud’ another 44 times, most often in ill context.
Proverbs 16:18 Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.

Proverbs 13:10 Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.

Psalm 10:4 In his pride the wicked does not seek him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God.

Never once does it say you should be proud of your achievements. No matter how deeply I look into the scriptures, I don’t see a single place where it talks of taking pride in one’s own fortune.

And why should it? What good comes from being prideful? What are the fruits of pride?

According to the Word, pride breeds contempt, arrogance, conceit, deception, disgrace, wrong doing, assault and violence. Do you want to be described with those words? I can testify to all those things and can also tell you it’s certainly no way to sum up who you are.

I have many reasons to be prideful according to the worldly way of things. And, I’m sure those who fight against our Lord would love nothing more than to whisper prideful thoughts in my ear so that I might become puffed up with pride, filled with arrogance and contempt, which will certainly lead to my disgrace and destruction of my witness.

What service do I give my son by showing him Daddy is prideful? None.
How do I bless my wife with by taking pride in my achievements? I don’t.
What honor am I showing God by filling my heart with pride instead of His glory?

Psalm 10:4 In his pride the wicked does not seek him; in all his thoughts there is no room for God.

I am the product of a broken home, brought into this world by broken parents, raised in a broken environment where I was continually taught, through actions and words, that I was worthless. As with many people, I overcame that by filling the hole of my sense of self worth with arrogance and pride, constantly trying to prove to myself and others I was better than that. Sadly, I still catch myself doing it even in my current life.

But, I need to recognize that pride is a tool of the evil one and when the idea of being proud of my accomplishments is brought up, I need to put that behind me as with all things that are not of God.

Deuteronomy 8:14 then your heart will become proud and you will forget the LORD your God

For, I never want to put something in my heart where God belongs. I never want to perceive a hole where His presence dwells and never want to try and fill that hole with things of this world. Been there, done that.

Proverbs 16:5 The LORD detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.

When the time comes and I must stand before the throne, I want to know I remained faithful, striving to do my best to follow His commands. I want Him to know that I focused on achieving things, not on being proud of the achievements. I didn’t make them, anyway.

John 1:3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

My good friend Rob once came up with a very cool tee shirt design called Heroes and Villains. When I asked him about the inspiration for it, he replied that we all choose to be one or the other, a hero or a villain. It seems to me pride isn’t heroic, so embracing it definitely falls into the villainous camp. And, my wife and son don’t need a villain in the house.

Things of this world and life are fleeting, but what happens when I meet God face to face will last forever. No amount of books deals, or autographs signed or fan mail received will matter one iota once I’ve left this world. What will matter is how I handled the experience and which side I chose to stand on.

I choose to be a hero. I choose God. In the end, being a winner is far better than being proud.

Psalm 31:23 Love the LORD, all his saints! The LORD preserves the faithful, but the proud he pays back in full.

1 comment:

  1. Good point!

    Its like the other most quoted scripture "Do unto others what you want to be done to you" which isn't actually found in the bible..