Pride…what a seemingly two-edged sword. We’re taught to be proud of who we are and of what we’ve accomplished. We’re encouraged to be proud of the stand we take or decisions that we have made. Yet there are multiple verses in the Bible that tell us pride is wrong.
“But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” –James 4:6
“This is what the Lord says, ‘Let no wise man boast of his wisdom, nor let the mighty man boast of his might, nor a rich man boast of his riches;” –Jeremiah 9:23
“When pride comes, then comes dishonor; but with the humble there is wisdom.” –Proverbs 11:2
“Through overconfidence comes nothing but strife, but wisdom is with those who receive counsel.” –Proverbs 13:10
You may be asking now, “Erin, how do you know whether the pride you feel is godly?” That’s a great question! Pride is not just an unbeliever thing, as we all know. It’s something that I struggle with, and I’m constantly having to ask this question of myself. That sin applies to all of us.
I PRIDE MYSELF on the fact that I know a little about a lot in the Bible. It makes me feel good to know that I can help people get an answer to something that they might not have previously known. But am I being prideful in the wrong way?
Have I acknowledged that my parents, BECAUSE OF GOD’S MERCY, accepted the Lord as their Savior and took me to church from birth. The Sunday School teacher, BECAUSE OF GOD, decided to answer the call to lead children and talk to me about the Bible stories. The private school I was sent to that was affiliated with my church…GOD provided the opportunity. GOD led the preachers to teach on topics. GOD gave me my brain to be able to soak up the knowledge. GOD directed conversations that I have with people that allow me to tell them what I know.
I know that’s a lot of capital letters in that paragraph, but the point is, I shouldn’t be taking pride in myself. I should be humbled that through GOD, I was given amazing opportunities. The difference in Godly pride and ungodly pride (if I may distinguish), is our humbleness about what we’ve achieved and WHO has allowed that achievement. Who is really getting the glory?
We can be proud of every single accomplishment or decision or of the things we say. But if we don’t understand and acknowledge that it would have been nothing without God’s kindness, grace and mercy allowing it, it’s simply sinful pride. We must be able to have humility and recognize that apart from God, we can do nothing (John 15:45).
I pray that as we go through this week, we can be humble in what we do and recognize what God has allowed us to do and who He has allowed us to be!