Pride is an obstacle we must overcome to serve others and please God.
Pride is defined as having a high opinion of one’s own dignity, merit, importance or superiority.
It can creep into our conscience subtly and keep us from having the proper empathy to serve.
The Bible tells us:
All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.”
1 Peter 5:5 NIV
How Pride Sneaks Into Our Life
It is easy to deny that you are prideful. Like I said, it sort of creeps into your conscience without you realizing it.
Let me share some examples of how this has happened to me.
When an opportunity to serve presents itself, I talk myself out of it with one or more of the following proud thoughts:
- I’ve done that before. I want to do something more meaningful.
- I’ve done enough already. Someone else should do this task.
- I don’t think they really deserve what they are asking me to do.
- I’m busy. Why can’t they handle this on their own?
- If they were more organized, they would not have to ask me.
- This will teach them a lesson about waiting to the last minute.
Do you see how there is a little puffed up sense of pride in each of these statements?
Pride isn’t always the glaring arrogance we think. However, even this less obvious kind keeps us from serving and pleasing God.
Pride Unchecked Is Dangerous
Paul warned us that as time progressed we would have to guard our hearts closely against such things.
For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful… 2 Timothy 3:2 ESV
If you look at Paul’s list, it is apparent that pride is a precursor for all of these sins. If we aren’t careful, it can lead us far away from God.
When we think too highly of ourselves, we are on a very treacherous road.
The LORD detests the proud; they will surely be punished.
Proverbs 16:5 NLT
Pretty sobering words, wouldn’t you say? We must guard our minds because God opposes the proud.
The Humble Will Be Exalted
Jesus tells us:
For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted. Luke 14:11 ESV
It is easy to let pride inflate your ego. But remember, everything you’ve accomplished is a gift from God. You did not achieve it on your own.
Therefore, we need to be humble and ready to serve even when thoughts like the ones above start bouncing around in our heads (maybe especially in these circumstances).
I pray that God will help me to copy the humility of Jesus.