God is at War with Pride

“His enemies would go blind from overexposure
to pure awesomeness!”
-Po talking about himself (great movie).

Ever feel like that? Like your awesomeness is just blinding? Apparently a lot of folks do. How do I know?

Just look at social media and the new word “selfie”.  I don’t mean someone’s profile picture. You kind of have to have that. I don’t mean a picture of someone playing ball, or with a friend, or doing something. I mean the page after page after PAGE of a person’s face:

God is at war.

“Here’s me happy. Here’s me sad. Here’s me pouting. Here’s me drowsy. Here’s me with my hair playfully tousled. Here’s me contemplative. Here’s me with one eye open. Here’s me biting my lip. Here’s my lip bleeding because I bit too hard. Here’s me cute. Here’s me cute. Here’s me cute. Here’s me cute. Look away! Or you will be blinded by my pure selfie awesomeness!”

 But God is at war with the proud.  James 4:6

God is at war.

Kim Kardashian has a new book. About herself. Called “Selfish”. Purportedly with 1200 selfies.

But God is at war with pride.

There’s another woman – in Thailand – 12,000 selfies, making her the selfie queen of the universe (according to Time Magazine). A reporter trying to contact her asked a family member “why so many selfies?”. The answer? It’s “quite personal.” That makes me laugh a little. Not sure what’s personal about flashing your mug all over the planet 12,000 times.

We have “gay pride” parades. Interesting combination of words when you consider this undeniable truth of life:

God is at war with pride. In fact He loathes it. Prov. 8:13

_______________________________________________________________

I did a funeral for a family friend a few years back. One of those that you leave feeling good because the deceased was well loved and lived well.

Of course I wore a suit for the funeral (don’t get to wear one too often). And I’ve got to tell you a secret, OK? You can’t tell anyone! Promise? Here it is: I was styling! I felt good. Know why? Because in that suit I looked good! I looked like a million bucks. Maybe a billion!

I stopped by the grocery after the funeral. In my most excellent, most awesome suit. And in my head, my awesomeness was blinding. Everyone had to be watching. They just had to be! I’m sure men were jealous of me, women were jealous of my wife, small children must be pointing and staring. I really looked that good. But God is at war with pride.
God is at war.

 Did I mention I had a new phone? Which I didn’t know how to use? And set the ringer to the sound of an ambulance? Because everyone wants a ringer wailing away in their pocket like an ambulance, right? At least everyone that’s ridiculous.

So I’m gliding through the grocery, and the ringer goes off. Not a quiet, barely audible, low volume kind of ambulance sound.

No no no! My ambulance ringer goes off like WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! WHOOOOOOOOOOOOO! WHOOOOOOOOOOOOO! (you have to imagine the up and down wailing of the ambulance sound) It sounded like an ambulance was tearing down the frozen food aisle!

And all those people I imagined were staring me? They WERE staring at me now! Because I have my coat buttoned, and I have no idea where the phone is, my hands are jetting into every pocket searching desperately and crazily as the phone continues it’s ambulance ring of: WHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! WHOOOOOOOOOOOOO! WHOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
And all of my “cool” and all of my “suave” and all of my “GQ” is flying out the window at the speed of sound. If you’d seen me ripping through my suit looking for the ambulance ringer, you would have thought “totally mental”. Or…you might have just looked away in embarrassment and shielded the children’s eyes so they wouldn’t be scarred by the crazy man humiliating himself in public. “Mommy, why is that man acting so crazy…” “Because he’s an idiot, my child. Now look away lest you humiliate him more.”
God was definitely at war with pride in my life that day.
The word pride or proud appears in the Bible over 100 times and is NEVER, EVER used in a favorable way. It is ALWAYS negative.
It’s associated with arrogance and conceit and self sufficiency. God loathes pride (Proverbs 8:13). He is opposed to the proud (James 4:6). Meaning God doesn’t just say “Hey, I don’t like your pride,” He says “I, the God of the universe, am opposed to YOU. Because of your pride.”

God is at war with pride.
God is opposed to the proud.

Embrace pride and you lose. 

Bummer right? Wrong. The opposite of pride really is blinding awesomeness. 

While God opposes pride, He is ridiculously extravagant with the humble. He exalts the humble (I Peter 5:6) and He lives with the lowly and revives the contrite and lifts their spirits (Isaiah 57:15). As opposed to the proud as God is, He is loving and extravagant with the humble.

So you don’t have to get loud and proud and be awesome to get awesomeness, you just have to get and live this: HE>i
And when we get that and live that, He pours His awesomeness on us.  
Stand strong,

Pastor David

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