Tuesday, May 1, 2007

The center of pr-I-de

C.S. Lewis refers to IT as the big sin; the one out of which every other sin flows.

IT is easy to overlook in ourselves.

IT is impossible NOT to see in others.

IT may reside in an extrovert or a introvert.

IT may attack the leader or IT may become attached to followers.

Sinners and saints are equally susceptible to IT.

IT is as home in the church as it is in the world.

IT caused a king to lose his mind and his kingdom.

When IT was squashed, his kingdom, his mind, and his position were restored.

IT is pride.

Daniel had been instructed by God to warn King Nebuchadnezzar (pronounced something like "neb YOO kuh NEZ zer") that IT would cause his loss of power and sanity.

Twelve months after the warning, the King was walking around admiring all he had done and all he had built. "That very hour...he was driven from men and ate grass like oxen..." (Read chapter 4 verses 19-36 to get the whole story.)

For seven "times" or years he lived that way until he knew "that the Most High rules in the kingdom of men" not King Neb.

Once his sanity returned and, apparently, accompanied by humility, the King who was once warned, now warns us. "I praise and extol and honor the King of heaven...(who is able to put down) those who walk in pride." (Daniel 4:36)

What causes you to house an unhealthy pride? Your accomplishments? Talents? Looks? Money? Job? What people say about you?

Or how 'bout the way you don't have those things like other people? The fact that you don't have to worry about having too much praise, honor, or attention? We can take pride in that too.

What about taking pride in your spirituality? Your religion?

Be careful. God is able to put down those who walk in pride. ANY pride. Pride over ANYTHING other than Him.

Instead, let us walk as Daniel walked: ready to help wherever God puts us, but always remembering the ability, the gifts, and the praise that follows belong to Him.

Grace & peace

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