Book of Rememberance

Malachi 3:16


on June 8, 2014

I hate that word, don’t you?  I hate it for a number of obvious reasons – most importantly being that God Himself hates it! (The LORD detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished. Proverbs 16:5)

But I can attest with most of you that likely pride has gotten us into some trouble…or a lot of trouble!

I have been studying about pride a LONG time. I mean years! Yes, I said years. You would think by now I could have moved on to something else? Ya, I expected the same. Sadly pride is so deeply woven into my being, it is taking much more than I anticipated to put an end to it. I figure I have been proud since at least kindergarten. (Though likely even early than that.) I was the only one in my class who could read and I [my pride] REMEMBERS that!  Were talking 25+ years of pride getting into every part of my being/soul/mind.

So what can it take to get it out? God! Of course the answer is always God, ’nuff said. We can pray and trust Him and be living lovely pride-free lives from here on out. Yay!

Except here is what we are facing: 2 Chronicles 7:14, Matthew 23:12, James 4:6,10,    1 Peter 5:6. This one little phrase has continued to cause me struggle after struggle. Humble YOURSELF. Oh man, what’s this? I thought God was going to do that for me?

Humility lesson #1 God responds to the humble.

I need to be humble enough to prostrate myself before His mighty hand and allow Him to drive out the pride from my life. He will do it in fact, but only for the humble heart that seeks His pruning, and acknowledges that I a) need pruning, and b) cannot drive out the pride in my own strength, power or trying. Turns out I may be studying a lot on the topic, but I am not actually pressing towards humility as a characteristic of my personality. I am still only reading, and praying (very hard!) that it will go away. I realized the discrepancy comes from my belief in the power of my prayer and not in the One to whom I am praying. I may very well be praying to and with myself. (Luke 18:11)

Humility lesson #2 God has given us the Holy Spirit. 

No I did not earn the Holy Spirit nor was God obligated to give Him to me for all that I have done/ not done.  But I have the Holy Spirit as a gift from God because He simply wanted to give Him to me, and wanted to invite me into His family. The result is that I can have conviction for prideful behaviour and numerous opportunities to practice humbling myself, repenting and asking forgiveness from God and others. Every opportunity to be prideful is an equal opportunity to learn humility.

Humility lesson #3 Humility is learned.

Jesus is our Teacher of humility. (Matthew 11:29) We are merely students – meaning we do not know anything on the topic and in fact need to be taught how and what being humble really means. Jesus invites us to learn from Him what He expects of us. I am so thankful that I do not need to wonder how to apply humility to my life. But, I do need to study and learn from the Teacher. (2 Timothy 2:15) Students are naturally humble. They take classes they need to learn and look to their teachers to instruct them in the topic. Likewise, the humble heart of a student will come to Jesus and learn of Him the more excellent way.

Humility lesson #4 Death alone will bring the ultimate end of pride in my life. 

As a Christian, I have hope for what is to come, a heavenly body and all things to be made new. I can expect to be free from sinful behaviour once I am permanently in the presence of My Lord. Thank You God!! But actually this is NOT what I am talking about. Death to self is the ultimate end of pride in our lives here on Earth (and it is possible!) Once we have practiced humbling ourselves, taken all the opportunities in our daily lives to allow others and circumstances to take a beating to our pride and repented sooner and quicker to our prideful behaviours we will begin to starve to death our self life along with it all the pride that is currently fueling and nourishing that part of “us”.

Pride fuels my self life right now. I am ever ready to defend myself (and God, as if He needs my protection). Ever ready to correct others around me (not in love but in puffing myself up) and to give others advice about lots of things that likely I am struggling with myself or have no idea about  – but I sure feel smart!

I am thankful to my God that He is able to deal with all of that within me and still love me, choose me, keep me and abide with me. Because of His steadfast love for me and hope for growth and holiness, I will keep pressing on to accomplish all of these lessons and make them a reality on my life.

Until then, I ask forgiveness. I pray (timidly) that God will continue to allow things to come against my flesh in order for me to have more and more practice at humbling myself. Every opportunity counts and though it really chafes I will make a point to embrace and welcome these in my life.






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