Love is diminished when pride rises up

by Craig on June 29, 2011

The venom of pride is lethal to love.

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Without love there is no faith.

Without faith there is no heaven.

Without heaven only this life remains,

and then death,

and then worse.

Lethal…
and not love.

A confession…

For 16 of my 26 years as a Christian,
I would place myself in situations destined for a fall.
I would think my faith to be superior,
because my knowledge was so deep,
and my relationship with God so intimate…

that I could be where other men could not…

I could be with those that other men could not…

and I wouldn’t fall…

because I was better.

For 16 of my 26 years knowledge came first for me, humility came later – and at a great price.

Pride…

borne of a desire to show oneself as a different breed…

a better one….

a lie of first magnitude.

It was the original lie,
from the original liar,
and pride is only an imitation,
only…

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… at that.

It is a reflection of evil – and the Evil One.

Is this the reflection I want for myself?

A reflection of evil?

A reflection without love?

Pride diminishes love, and in the end, has no room for it.

Nature abhors a vacuum…
and in the history of humanity…
there has only been one irreplaceable person.

Aside from Our Lord, if were to erase the life of any one person ever to live, it would mean nothing to the flow of time and space and history.

Like water would rush into a river if a dam proved itself inadequate…

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…someone else would have stepped in to replace the missing piece.

♥✞ღ

Father in Heaven,
You know how I once was so arrogant,
so prideful,
so lacking in humility.

I so wanted all of you,
but lacked a most essential element.

Thank you for the crushing that squeezed out so much pride.
Thank you for the thorn that still keeps it at bay.
Thank you for keeping watch each day for your prodigal.

I’m sorry it has taken so long,

for my spirit to be,

as it should have been,
so many years ago.

I’m grateful for the crushing, the defeat, the failure that destroyed me,

so You could rebuild me.

Lord, you know I can speak,
and write,
and hide among the words.

Please keep my words only humble, only true.

Please keep my life a reflection of what I say I believe. Help me remain watchful because pride is an ever crouching lion in the tall grass – and a siren call beckoning sweetly into the arms of disaster.

Cause me to remember whose I am – not who I am.

Amen,

and amen,

and amen.

{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

thefisherlady June 29, 2011 at 8:55 am

Cause me to remember whose I am – not who I am… I love this Craig! What a wonderful prayer!

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Craig June 29, 2011 at 3:13 pm

thank you Susan – your words are gracious – to always remember it is WHOSE I am – not WHO I am. But I forget so easily…

God bless.

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A. June 29, 2011 at 1:23 pm

Craig, just reading through what you wrote looks so easy in a sense-until I imagine it is me writing it and then I realize just how much courage it takes to be honest and transparent like this. I am glad you are, and I saw myself in this and you summed it up so well in the confession that we can think we are of a different breed-special in a way that is above others. We are each uniquely special, it is true, but you are addressing the other sneaky ‘good voice-but-lying’ kind of special. And ditto to thefisherlady’s vote.

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Craig June 29, 2011 at 3:15 pm

A., That is another sneaky “good voice but lying”. Thank you A., Thank you – and as always, God bless and keep you, and watch over you, and hold you close.

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Cora June 29, 2011 at 2:45 pm

May the refiner’s fire burn long and hot within ME until I can whisper this prayer! Thank you, Craig!

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Craig June 29, 2011 at 3:17 pm

Cora, I’m a little tired of the refiners fire burning – although I heart that it does. My hope is to live out this prayer – the words come easy – the living out is the challenge. And thank YOU, Cora. And God bless and keep you.

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misty June 29, 2011 at 3:12 pm

craig, first thanks for your thoughtful comment at my space the other day.
and this…. this makes me think of the shady but theologically sound (haha) movie the devil’s advocate. pride gets us when we least expect it, and certainly, it is lethal indeed.
good write, lots of truth here.

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Craig June 29, 2011 at 3:20 pm

oh, that movie! Misty you are so right – “shady but theologically sound” – pride is sneaky – as is its founder – Al Pacino? (◠‿◠) thank you, Misty, for your kind words – and that movie reminder – and God bless and keep you

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Dawn June 29, 2011 at 3:52 pm

Dear Craig,

I am sticking this prayer, with a few modifications to make it specific to me, on the wall next to my bed. Hmmm, I wonder where I got that “sticky on the wall” idea? Right now there is a poster there of the Great Wall of China. That is a fitting symbol of how huge this issue is. I know I have pride big time because I get hurt way too easily and want to fight for my rights way too many times. Like I always say, “I know I’m not dead yet because I keep getting up.” When I no longer matter is when I’ll know only Christ matters.

Thanks for this wonderful prayer,
Dawn

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Craig June 29, 2011 at 3:59 pm

I should do the same Dawn, I forget so easily. And the Great Wall of China poster – that would be a perfect battleground board for the posty notes – two sides – big wall :-) and oh what a sneaky symptom of pride – getting feelings hurt – wanting to fight for rights. I am totally with you on this! I always heart your comments – but I hearted this one really lots – especially the way you ended it.

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brian June 29, 2011 at 3:58 pm

a humble post…i found myself, in leaving ministry several years back broken of a similar pride…thank you…

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Craig June 29, 2011 at 4:00 pm

Brian – I graduated seminary – it never entered ministry – and yet I have the feeling you and I have felt the same “broken”. Thank you – and God bless you.

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Kati June 29, 2011 at 4:45 pm

the statement that knowledge was pursued instead of pride had me thinking… I struggle a lot with the importance placed on knowledge in many of our churches nowadays. Somehow it seems that the more I know the more I realise I don’t know and instead want to depend on the spirit of it all. This is a very heartfelt post, but I want to tell you not to be too hard on yourself, because it sounds like you’re simply struggling against what society tells us a good Christian should be – and that struggle is a noble pursuit indeed.

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Craig June 29, 2011 at 4:52 pm

I guess the point,Kati, is that maybe I should have been a little harder with myself 15 years ago. I should’ve listened to people who knew more – I mean heart knowledge not head knowledge. We need the head knowledge because it keeps us from making big mistakes on who God is and what he does and how he works – but too much head without heart is way wrong. Thank you for being an encourager. Thank you much. I hearted having you read me. God bless and keep you Kati.

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Mama Zen June 29, 2011 at 8:04 pm

Yes. I get this completely.

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Craig June 30, 2011 at 11:30 am

thank you Kelly – just that – thank you – oh, and God bless and keep you and yours (◠‿◠)

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Mari June 29, 2011 at 8:44 pm

I echo that “Amen”!

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Craig June 30, 2011 at 11:31 am

… as always, I treasure it when you read my words, thank you Mari, and again, as always, God bless you!

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lori June 29, 2011 at 10:32 pm

But, how wonderful that you chose a different path. Many never do…

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Craig July 1, 2011 at 4:49 pm

Lori, I’m sorry I’m late replying to your comment – you got caught in my spam catcher thing. It should probably only happen this once. I’m glad I caught it – I heart your comment. I’ve always wanted to know God deeper, and better, and closer, I didn’t realize how much pride stood in the way – and the removal of the pride – not a pleasant process – but I heart God for caring enough to do it. Thank you Lori… Still choosing. God bless you.

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Debra June 30, 2011 at 1:07 am

Cause me to remember whose I am – not who I am. – A quote worthy line. Think I’ll steal it :)

Pride is something I’ve contemplated this year a good deal. I’ve seen the mighty fallen, giants slain, defending champions swept… and on goes the list.
And I’ve seen the beam in my own eye too.
Thank God He allowed me to spot it before I went too far in trying to remove the speck from another’s. Outstanding reminder, Craig, to remain on the qui vive and guard against pride – thank you!

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Craig June 30, 2011 at 11:35 am

thank you Debra, I’m honored that I am steal-worthy (◠‿◠). pride is sneaky – the next couple of Wednesdays will be thinking about it, and posting – linking with and Ann V. and I’m glad you were reminded in time – oh, for me to remain reminded! Again, thank you Debra, and as always, God bless you.

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Debbie June 30, 2011 at 1:28 am

Your deep into love and deep into scripture posts today supported each other. Pride always sneaks up on me. And makes me feel sick and sad when I realize what it really is . . .not what I had rationalized it as. God bless you for sharing how that happened in your life so we can see how it happens in ours too . . .and repent and turn to Him. :)

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Craig June 30, 2011 at 11:37 am

Debbie, humility for me was such an important lesson to learn – and sadly, it was only learned by having the pride squished out. It’s so much better to learn the lesson that God wants us to ourselves – sometimes his teaching methods are –——— direct. Thank you Debbie, and God bless you!

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Michelle June 30, 2011 at 4:11 am

I am thankful for the quiet Voice that gently reminds me that I am no better than others. And am slowly learning to ignore the louder voice that tells me I am not worthy. There is a BIG difference.

Thank you for this today.

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Craig June 30, 2011 at 11:40 am

isn’t it funny – what’s a voice on other some people’s negative voice wall isn’t even a distant whisper on other people’s. maybe it’s a remnant of the old pride – but it doesn’t seem so – I don’t struggle with the “not worthy” voice – you’ve seen a bunch of mine already – I bet you don’t struggle with most of them. Thank you Michelle – thank you – and God bless.

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imperfect prose June 30, 2011 at 9:54 pm

i love your humility, craig… it really stands out to me, and i’m not just saying that. you truly desire to know God more. it is beautiful.

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Craig July 1, 2011 at 4:29 pm

I’ve always desired to know God, so intimately, so closely, ever since he first called me. The humility he had to work into me – it wasn’t pleasant – but I heart the way he works in our lives to make us more like him – to make us less imperfect – and more…

… perfecter (◠‿◠)

thank you as always Emily, and God bless you and keep you.

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