Pride Comes Before A Fall

“The Lord detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.” -Proverbs 16:5 (NIV)

Arrogance is one of the most destructive and humiliating attitudes to have. By playing upon the ego of a person, it inflates man’s perceptions about themselves and creates a fantasy of their abilities. Those who have succumbed to arrogance accept this lie and strut with haughty pride. Thinking that they are better than everyone else they lord their self-proclaimed superiority over others and look down upon those they deem inferior with contempt. But when the day comes when someone with humble confidence exposes the arrogant for who they really are, the same men who marched with pride are put to shame. They learn the hard way that there is no room for conceit and that the proud are sure to fall.

Do we have pride within our hearts? Sometimes we may think that we know better than God. Blind to our own folly we say to God that we do not need Him; that we are perfectly capable of living independent of Him and controlling our destinies. But such a pride has its cost. By forsaking the wisdom of God, our minds have become dulled and we are unable to see the folly of our choices. Thinking ourselves to be wise, the punishment we receive for our arrogance is that God allows us to go our way only to realize, after a painful reminder of the consequences of our actions, that we are fools. However, the beauty of this punishment is that there is hope if we choose to grasp it. God will never point and laugh when we have fallen. Rather, He wishes that all men come into relationship with Him so that they may find abundant life and lasting joy. When we allow Christ’s Spirit to enter our hearts and surrender our pride to His infallible wisdom, we will find that being within God’s perfect will is the best place to be.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

All Things Will Be Restored

“Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied. Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh.” -Luke 6:21 (NIV)

There are times when circumstances seem as if they are nothing short of bleak. We look back on our hopes and dreams and compare them with our present realities. Perhaps we have not made it to the point where we would like to be in our lives. Maybe situations have come along our path, and these have pulled us into the depths of despair and sadness. In times like these it is hard to laugh or to find joy. It may even seem impossible to do so when all around us we see failure and misery. We cry out saying it is all hopeless. Those cherished times of celebration and merriment seem to be distant memories we cannot reclaim, and sorrow appears to be our only friend.

But there is hope! A hope that will never fade, and can never be taken away. It is not within the will of God that our suffering be permanent. Indeed it was never a part of His plan in the first place. This world is a fallen place, caused by man’s deliberate choice to forsake Him. Yet despite this, God has not forsaken us. He is the restorer of all things and desires that we be brought back into relationship with Him. When we have allowed the Spirit of Christ to enter our hearts and have submitted every area of our lives to His redeeming work, we will be able to take assurance in the fact that He cares for all who call upon His name. We will find laughter again and find fulfillment knowing that in Christ we have victory over whatever may come our way. God is able to use our sufferings and sorrows to fulfill His perfect will, and He will do so with gladness when we choose to trust in Him and allow ourselves to be guided by His hands.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.

Performing Inner Maintenance

“All wrongdoing is sin,” -1 John 5:17a (NIV)

I enjoy looking at machines from the Industrial Revolution. With the advent of steam power and the need for mass production, this period spanning from the 18th to the 19th centuries produced some of the most fascinating machines to have ever been invented. Indeed in some ways they form the foundation of modern technology today. Whenever I have the privilege of going to museums where they showcase these technological wonders, I always marvel at their complexity and order. Yet it is surprising that even the smallest factor can render such intricate machines to be inoperable. Things such as rust, or a rock caught in the cogs can damage the machine and hinder its productivity. Thus, it always needs to be well-maintained to run efficiently and smoothly.

Sometimes we try to justify the seemingly “small” sins we commit in our lives. Feeling that we are essentially good people, we see our lapses into what we deem to be minor sins as excusable and harmless. But the truth is that in the eyes of God, sin is sin regardless of what it is. Even what we see as small sins can be devastating to ourselves and our relationships with others. Like rust developing in a complex machine or a rock caught in between its cogs, it can prevent others from seeing the work that Christ is doing in our lives and would cause harm to ourselves as well. How can we prevent this from happening? We cannot do so through our own efforts, but solely through Christ. When we have allowed His Spirit to enter our hearts and carry out His redemptive work in our lives, He will help us by His enabling to maintain the righteousness He has given us as we surrender our lives to Him. In Christ we are able to live life in its fullest sense as He leads us away from our bondage to sin and into the freedom which comes from knowing Him as Lord and Savior. By cleansing us of anything that is not in keeping with His holy standards in our lives, He will shine through us as He pours out His love and goodness so that others may be drawn to Him.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.