And because of God’s gracious gift to me, I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you should. Instead, be modest in your thinking, and judge yourself according to the amount of faith that God has given you.
Oh, how I struggle with pride. No, no – not the big chest, inflated ego kind of
pride. And not the “isn’t it OK to be proud of my son” kind of pride. My
struggle is that I start believing that things are going well because of me! It
doesn’t take too long, and before you know it my thoughts are on what a good
job I’m doing. God gets pushed aside so I can take credit. I start out bowed
before God, but before long, it’s about me.
Pride is a subtle thing. It creeps into our heart – just a little. It won’t bother
anything. And left there, it begins to grow – not too fast or else it would be
noticed. No, slow and steady – that’s the way pride works. It tip toes in affecting our perspective. As our perspective changes so does our attitude.
Then, before we realize it, it flares up – me, me, me, my, my, my, I, I, I.
Pride can be a problem when it comes to our dress code on a Kairos.
We are not to do anything that brings attention or glory to ourselves.
And yet, for some, our clothing yells out look at me! What’s wrong with nice
clothes? I don’t see a problem. This is overreacting.
No Logos on shirts
No T-Shirts – Must have collars
No tight fitting clothing
Wear conservative styles for dresses and skirts
No short skirts,
No low cut/revealing blouses
No excessive makeup
We all can wear jeans or slacks
No outrageous haircuts
No overdone jewelry
No open-toed shoes
No – this is pride speaking.
Shake pride out for this Kairos.
Purge yourself of its self focused hold on you.
Our brothers or sisters in prison can easily be distracted by the things of this world. Don’t let overly nice clothing distinguish you or set you apart.
Don’t let your choices become the source for a resident to covet your stuff!
Don’t let your pride become a source of sin for someone else!
What is God saying to me through this Word?
How can we help people entrapped in the bondage of pride?
Prayer Focus: Lifting up all who are battling with the pride of man.
May we all be aware of the subtle influence pride has on each of us. The pride of man is that we want to believe we can succeed without God. This is a major area for us to be attacked in. This speaks to our value system and the worth or difference each of us make in the world around us.
John the Baptist, when asked if he was the Christ, Elijah or a prophet, did not claim a title to explain himself. Instead, he quoted Scripture from the book of Isaiah describing his work and purpose.
He said, “I am the voice of one crying out in the wilderness, ‘Make straight the way of the Lord,’ as the prophet Isaiah said.” (Now they had been sent from the Pharisees.)
They asked him, “Then why are you baptizing, if you are neither the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?” John answered them, “I baptize with water, but among you stands one you do not know, even he who comes after me, the strap of whose sandal I am not worthy to untie.” These things took place in Bethany across the Jordan, where John was baptizing.
John didn’t say this in false modesty or humility, he just expressed an accurate assessment of who he was in relation to Christ. He was nothing, and Jesus was everything. We need this perspective as well. Especially when we are about to launch into what’s wrong with somebody else. We’re all pretty worthless compared to Christ. This changes how we approach any truth-telling conversation.
John defines for us a boldness of purpose, a meekness (strength under control) regarding his identity and clarity with a humble perspective of who he is compared to Jesus. Yet when Jesus was asked about John, He was clear to let us know that no one born of a woman was greater to God than John was.
In our boldness for presenting the Good News we are always directing others toward Jesus and never our self. This is whether it is our dress, our behavior or our words. As radical as John was, he was consistent that his story was not about him.