"None are so empty as those who are full of themselves" Benjamin Whichcote
Sometimes we start off with the best of intentions, but somewhere along the way our pride derails us. We get sidetracked, lose focus, and suddenly all sense of authenticity disappears. So often in history well-intentioned revolutionaries have often battled the tyranny of a despotic regime only to become a tyrannical regime themselves-- "Inverted: Tom Ellsworth"
It's easy to be critical of the Pharisees in the Bible- but often we are no better. One of the biggest problems the Pharisees had- if not the biggest- was pride.
As I'm going to Peru to serve, it's easy for my heart to feel prideful or boastful of my "sacrifice" especially when people are constantly saying "Oh I'm so proud of you, you're just so generous to be serving God for an entire year." -to which I would have to question myself & them Have I not been serving Him? Christ calls us to service for a lifetime not nine months of our life.
It's also easy to say that I want to go to AMOR and have clinic time. I want to be upfront in the mission field. To spend lots of time in the clinic and get to actually help heal people. But I know that there is 19 student missionaries going to work with AMOR and that they do not need 19 people in the clinic at all times. I know that I am not a nurse, and that there will be far more qualified students than I. I want to be willing to serve where God wants me too and I don't want to limit His ways of working in me. Even if I am going to Peru for 9 months simply to be humbled by Christ and serve the fellow student missionaries going, God's will be done. I might be a teacher in Peru and I might do manual labor. I might help cook, clean, or I might help write the newsletters for AMOR. I want to be willing to do what God wants me too- no matter what it is.
Pride- it's something I struggle with just like everybody else. It's hard to let people walk all over you and put you down. It's hard to let yourself get the lowest job- especially if you think you deserve a better one. But Pride is something that is detestable to Christ. Jesus was the ultimate example of humility. In our culture, people think you need to stand up for yourself and defend yourself, but Christ never once defended Himself. He defended His father; He defended the poor and those who couldn't defend themselves. Not once did He defend His good works or perfect character.
* I struggled with my pride for a long time when I first thought about writing and making this blog public. For about 3 months I wrote on it for myself and my two best friends to see and help keep accountable. I promised that I would write honestly and authentically share my struggles, weaknesses, and my adventures in following God. In July, I finally decided to share my blog with everyone because I am going as a missionary to Peru and want them to be able to keep in touch with my missionary journey. It's harder to write honestly and sometimes I don't want to share my true thoughts and struggles and be as open about my faith as I write. But I feel like it's a God thing and that He wants me to share my journey. You know how they say "you wear your heart on your sleeve" well that's how I write. I'm open. I'm not going to lie and I hope I don't offend anyone. I decided to share and be open with my life and parts of my spiritual journey, because I want to encourage others to follow God wherever He's calling them.
"Be careful not to do your acts of righteousness before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven." Matthew 6:1
“As long as you are proud you cannot know God. A proud man is always looking down on thing 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
If you look at the cross- and can truly in your head begin to wrap your mind around Christ: His mission, His death, and His purpose. Then you will realize you have nothing to be proud about. You are not good- you are a murderer. You are a sinner deserving death. Only because of Christ's love have you been saved like a lamb slaved from the slaughterer Christ has picked you up and is carrying you- not because of anything you did- but because of who He is and how much He loves you. So may we not be so proud and big-headed thinking that we are doing right or our ways are best- but may we always acknowledge and proclaim that we are nothing without Christ but everything because of His mercies, His love, and His plan to save us. To Christ be the glory! And may he forgive our pride yet again..