Monday, March 8, 2010

Chapter 9: The Obstacle of Pride

This chapter was a short one to read and yet God has been and continues to minister to me on this one-day in day out. And I hope it doesn't end until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

I have been talking to God about the definition of pride and its effects on our lives--and it ain't pretty. Pride is a thief of love, joy, peace, genuineness, contentment. You name it, pride can filter in and steal, divide, and destroy. Sound like someone? Yes, our enemy the devil.

Pride is so dangerous because indeed it can come subtly, disguised, and slowly. So we must be on the alert!

I will actually start with the second part of the assignment first and then work by way back.


How are you struggling with pride right now, today, at this moment?


Simply put, I struggle with pride every time I use the phrase, "I don't understand and/or my mind can't even conceive that."

There are times when genuinely I don't understand something and want to for learning sake. Then there are other times, when no, it's pride. Hubby may do something and I will say, "My mind can't even conceive that." What I am really saying is, "My mind can't conceive that because I think things through and you, well, you didn't think at all." Mind you this doesn't have to be said in the midst of shouts, screams, anger, or hurt. It can be said in a cavalier manner, BUT it's meaning is still there and that doesn't please the Lord. The Lord hasn't called us to compare ourselves to anyone and let alone try and understand someone else. We are called to love. Lord help me. So I am working not only on taking out these phrases from my vocabulary, but I am praying that the Lord would cleanse my heart and minister me in this specific area.

Read Genesis 3:1-13.
What are some things that jump out at you regarding pride here.

Beware this may be long. There's a lot of meat in here, but with the Lord's help I will try to be as concise as possible.

1 John 2:16 states

For everything in the world-the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does--comes not from the Father but from the world.

This passage helped to understand Adam and Eve over at Genesis a bit more.

Looking at Genesis 3:6 we see 1 John 2:16 come into play.

(1)Woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food-cravings of sinful man

(2) pleasing to the eye-lust of his eyes

(3) desirable for gaining wisdom-boasting of what he has and does

Pride will make you want things you don't have and aren't supposed to have to be someone you're not and someone you're not supposed to be.

Eve's pride led to sin (eating of the fruit). Genesis 3:7 informs us that (1)the eyes of both of them were opened and (2) they realized they were naked.

Having their eyes now opened they were able to "see" each other because they realized they were naked. Now they could see each other's flaws and faults. They were able to see vulnerability and weakness in each other and in themselves which brought about fear (v.10). Think about the conversation they had once their eyes were opened.

The fear of exposing the real me caused them to sew fig leaves together and make coverings for themselves (v.7). No longer wanting to see the real me or the real you, pride causes us to make covering for ourselves. Coverings such as masks, self-sufficiency, independence, walls that don't let others in. Notice any coverings in your life?

Adam and Eve hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. Yes, pride causes us to hide from God even while sitting in a church pew or kneeling in praying. You see God asked Adam three questions in verses 9 and 11 and Adam does not provide direct absolute truth answers. There is no repentance, conviction of sin, acceptance of responsibility for his actions. Pride replaces honesty, transparency, confrontation, and conviction with justification, rationalization, evading, and avoidance. We can hide among the trees of our roles, duties, titles. Are you hiding from God today?

Notice that in verse 11, God asks Adam, "Who told you that your were naked?" Loves covers a multitude of sins, but pride doesn't. It exposes others faults, fears, and weaknesses to mask our own. God's voice was no longer the most important in their lives. Pride cause someone else's, including our own, voice to be more important than God's.

In verse 13 Eve admits the serpent deceived her and indeed he did. He made her think she lacked wisdom, that God was with holding something from her, that when God created her, He had made her incomplete, that God's authority can be replaced by her own. Are you deceived? Has the enemy made you want something you don't have with the promise it will satisfy? Remember he is a LIAR. True satisfaction and contentment come from our maker, God.

Eve set out to have her eyes opened to gain wisdom she thought she lacked and ended up blind to the Lord's truth about who she was--made in the image of God in whom there is all wisdom.
Summary:

Pride - Sin- Covering & Hiding - Fear - Blindness

And the cycle will continue unless we say bye bye to pride and hello humility.


But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:
"God opposes the proud
but gives grace to the humble.
James 4:6


2 comments:

  1. Sister very well said! I think about what Pastor was preaching yesterday and he said when we begin to listen to our own opinions and lean on our own understand we are not able to hear the voice of the Lord.... help us Jesus!

    I truly am coming to the realization everyday of why God says that all will pass but the Word of God will remain forever. It is truth and leads to all truth. I pray that the Lord continues to bare us, no masks, no fig leaves, and that we can truly be free enough to accept the Lord's guidance, His advice and His correction for face value.

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  2. Pride is definately an obstacle to peace and harmony especially in the home and in relationships with loved ones not to mention the most valuable relationship we have...the one with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We must remember that pride is an attribute of the devil. We must resemble JESUS!

    The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.-John 10:10

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May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer. Psalm 19:14