Category Archives: Pride

The Dead End of Pride

There are two kinds of pride. The first kind of pride is when a man despises his brother, considers him worth little or nothing, while he puts much greater value on himself. Such a man, unless he speedily repents and takes great care, will come in a short time to that second kind of pride by which he lifts himself up against God , and ascribes what he does right not to God, but to himself.

-Dorotheos of Gaza

Dead-End-SignThere are many proud people who handle their pride in proper ways. We should be proud of our achievements, our children, our honesty, our morality, but all these things must be credited to God who has given us all that we have. Without a God based pride in ourselves we accomplish very little for ourselves, the world or God. We are His creation and He has created us for good. He wants us to accomplish and thrive for His glory. The scripture says, “…everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory.” He created us for His glory and we are all called by His name. As we do our very best for God, and take pride in doing so, we glorify Him.

I live on a dead end street. Simply expressed, that means if you get to the end of my street, you have to turn around or back up to get out. The two types of pride that Dorotheos refers to are dead ends. The first one, the devaluation of the brother is the beginning of the dead end. It has a way out, the second, the devaluation of God, requires that we turn around or back out before we are destroyed.

Dead-End-PrideAre you traveling down that dead end path of pride? Do you find yourself enjoying the company of yourself more than anyone else? Is it difficult for you to admit the possibility that you may be mistaken? Worse yet, are you forgetting that you are created for God’s glory, not your own? If you see these warning signs in your life, you are headed down a dead end road, but faint not, all things are possible through the God who gives us strength. Take a pause and call on Him. Dorotheos says to “speedily repent,” before it is too late.

Prayer

Lord I ask You to give me the wisdom to know the difference between the actions that give You glory and the ones that give me glory. I repent of the times that I have acted for my own glorification. I pray that you will forgive me for those times. Set me forth on a road, this day, that will lead to You and Your glory.

Amen

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Filed under Desert Fathers, Dorotheos of Gaza, Pride

The Art of Solitude

English: A young Marine finds a moment of quie...

It is a difficult

lesson to learn today,

to leave one’s friends

and family and deliberately

practise the art of solitude

for an hour or a day

or a week.

For me, the break

is most difficult …

And yet, once it is done,

I find there is a quality

to being alone that is

English: Carmelite Monastery, Eccleston The Ca...

incredibly precious.

Life rushes back into the void,

richer,

more vivid,

fuller than before!

Anne Morrow Lindbergh

 

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Filed under Devotional, Pride

Pride

Pride is the first of the seven deadly sins. One falls into pride when one lacks trust in God and his mercy and becomes arrogant, hypocritical, and self-centered. Reinhold Neibuhr, who has been referred to as the twentieth-century theologian of sin, summed up humanity’s basic sin our unwillingness to acknowledge our creatureliness, our self-elevation in one word, PRIDE. Neibuhr described the four types of pride:

1. The pride of power wants power to gain security for self or to maintain a power position considered to be secure.

2. Intellectual pride rises from human knowledge that pretends to be ultimate knowledge. It presumes to be final truth.

3. Moral pride claims that its standards for virtue test and measure all righteousness. Niebuhr observed that most evil is done by “good” people who do not know that they are not good.

4. Spiritual pride is self-glorification. It claims that “self’s righteousness” conforms to God’s righteousness.

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Filed under Devotional reading, Pride, Reinhold Niebuhr

Looking Above

C. S. Lewis

C. S. Lewis

“A proud man is always looking down on things and people; and, of course, as long as you are looking down, you cannot see something that is above you.”

― C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

All of us have an inbuilt prideful tendency to look down and out at our circumstances. We look down because this situation cannot be my fault. My situation, after all, must be caused by some evil person who has infiltrated my life. We look out because there has to be a way out – a way that I can construct. As we look down at the cause and out for the solution, we miss the answer because our egos hide the solution. Simply stated, let us look to the God from above who loves us and cares for us no matter how bad things seem.

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Filed under C. S. Lewis, Pride