We know that God hates pride. Proverbs 16:5 “The LORD detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.” I don’t know about you, but I hate to do anything that God Almighty hates…and I do not want to be punished. So, for me, I want to really pay attention to this.
The obstacle of pride will keep us from drawing closer with God. It seems obvious; however, we struggle with this almost every day. Without even thinking, we often wake up and begin our day exactly the way we want to. Pride shows itself as we selfishly do things without God. We can even on a “good day” put forth an honest effort to put ourselves in the right place and hold God up high; but we always fall short and put ourselves in the high place, don’t we?
We love ourselves naturally. It doesn’t take much for us to put ourselves above others and have them not see Christ in our lives. Our eyes leave God and we don’t need Him any longer. Sadly, we then miss out on seeing His power and His glory. Ultimately, we are on a wrong path leading us to separation from Him.
It breaks God’s heart when we do not listen to Him. Ultimately, pride will take us captive. In Jeremiah 13:17, it tells us “If you do not listen, I will weep in secret because of your pride; my eyes will weep bitterly, overflowing with tears, because the Lord’s flock will be taken captive.” Just the thought of this brings me to tears. I would like to take a moment and ask you to visualize God’s face with tears running down His face as He looks at our prideful hearts. The verse doesn’t just say that His eyes were overflowing with tears, but that His eyes weep bitterly. Have you ever wept bitterly? The heart severely hurts and feels oh-so-heavy, right? It is helpful for us to understand the emotion fully so we can understand God’s heart.
“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2 The definition of disgrace is: loss of reputation or respect, dishonor, shame, discredit. As I ponder this, I can see a direct correlation of disgrace and why pride is something that God hates for His children. When we behave in a way that is prideful, we do not allow others to see Him. We steal all His glory and our job is to BRING others to His glory! In addition to disgracing God’s glory, have you ever been around someone who is full of pride? They are annoying to be around and they are difficult to respect. Pride can destroy a marriage and wound children. It can tear apart a friendship. Because we are supposed to bear Christ’s name as a Christian many in the world do not see God; and sadly, pride has a lot to do with this.
One thing for sure, disgrace will ultimately humble us. For some, they seem to be more hard-headed and live through more disgrace than others (look at the story about Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel 4). We can either choose to let God humble us or develop humbleness ourselves. Fortunately, there is hope for us yet! If we truly work on humbling ourselves, we will have His wisdom! When we see ourselves in the rightful place as a servant of God and He is the King; we will lower ourselves before His majesty and worship Him. He wants to gift us with His wisdom.
We must be obedient and humble ourselves before the King on a daily basis. So often we pray that God will make us humble. (That sounds scary now that we just read about Nebuchadnezzar!) However, James 4:10 Says “Humble YOURSELF before the Lord, and He will lift you up.” How does this look? God gives us circumstances every day to humble ourselves. Do we look at these as opportunities to learn humility? Given the opportunity, we have the choice to defend ourselves and not see what it is that God is showing us; or we can choose to humble ourselves and honor God by bowing down to Him in all areas of our lives; especially when we need to admit our faults. The choice is ours.