Tuesday, July 12, 2011

A Dangerous Trap

This past Sunday our Senior Pastor (Jeff Geise) preached on pride vs. humility. To say the least, it was a convicting message. This brought me back to a passage of Scripture that I had read recently, Galatians 6:4. Let's take a look in three versions...

"But each one must examine his own work, and then he will have reason for boasting in regard to himself alone, and not in regard to another." (NASB)

"Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in himself, without comparing himself to somebody else" (NIV)

"Pay careful attention to your own work, for then you will get the satisfaction of a job well done, and you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else." (NLT)

There are a ton of angles and things to talk about when dealing with the issue of pride. If you're like me at all, you probable drift in and out of being prideful and humble. However, let's just take a look at this one verse. (If you want to go deeper, check out Jeff's message here).

The heart of this verse is quite simple; examine, test, and pay attention to your own actions. Don't worry about what others are doing, and don't compare yourselves to others. They have their own struggles, gifts, challenges, etc. You, (and I), should pay attention only to the job we do. If we do this, then we can feel good about the job we've done.

The bottom line? It's what I wrote in my journal after reading that verse. "We should only measure our successes by comparing ourselves to ourselves." In other words...
- Was my motive pure?
- Did I do my best?
- Am I striving in accordance with my potential?
- Did I bring glory to God? 

I can take pride in pleasing God...and I know I please Him when I answer "yes" to those questions. It's when I come to Him, feeling smug about myself because I _______ better than someone else...that's when I'm headed for a downfall."

So let's make a pact this week; focus on your actions, and compare yourself to yourself. Try to do things for God's glory, to the best of your ability, ultimately bringing Him glory and honor. And then rest easy for a job well done.

1 comment:

Tricycle Harvest said...

Great thought Mike. I read the following the other day and thought it applied to your great thought.

What Satan put into the heads of our remote ancestors was the idea that they could "be like gods"-could set up on their own as if they had created themselves-be their own masters-invent some sort of happiness for themselves outside God, apart from God. And out of that hopeless attempt has come nearly all that we call human history-money, poverty, ambition, war, prostitution, classes, empires, slavery-the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy.

The reason why it can never succeed is this. God made us: invented us as a man invents an engine. A car is made to run on gasoline, and it would not run properly on anything else. Now God designed the human machine to run on Himself. He Himself is the fuel our spirits were designed to burn, or the food our spirits were designed to feed on. There is no other. That is why it is just no good asking God to make us happy in our own way without bothering about religion. God cannot give us a happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing. --C.S. Lewis