If you’re looking for a bit of vulnerability today, you’ve come to the right place 🙂
As I’ve said before, I often write about an area in which I’m currently being challenged. Today’s topic is one that’s a recurring struggle in my life.
One blessing of memorizing Scripture is that the Holy Spirit can bring specific verses to mind when they’re needed. Sometimes a verse from a particular Psalm will cheer me up when I need encouragement. Or when I sense that I need wisdom, James 1:5 will remind me to ask God for it.
And then there are the times a verse comes along and convicts me of sin in my life. Such was the case on a couple of occasions recently.
I’ll share the verse with you and you’ll immediately know what my issue was.
“Only by pride cometh contention: but with the well-advised is wisdom.” ~Proverbs13:10
Before we dive into my story, let’s remind ourselves what pride is.
The definition from dictionary.com is “a high or inordinate opinion of one’s own dignity, importance, merit, or superiority, whether as cherished in the mind or as displayed in bearing, conduct, etc.“
That phrase “cherished in the mind” is interesting. Pride begins with how we think of ourselves. Eventually, if we indulge those thoughts rather than fight them, pride comes out in how we act, what we say, and the way we treat other people.
Here are two recent situations when I was convicted by this verse.
In the first instance, my feelings were hurt. I felt like someone treated me poorly, especially when I considered all that I’d done for them. And since I’m keeping it real, my first inclination was to get angry at them and let them know it.
That’s precisely when Proverbs 13:10 came to mind. There was about to be contention (aka some conflict), and according to that verse, it would be my pride that caused it. I was going to play myself as the victim and try to get the other person to see how I’d been hurt.
Thankfully I heeded that warning and realized that there was a better way to handle the situation. In this case, it was to just let it go. I’m not saying that’s always the right thing to do, but it was in this moment.
The only reason for the conflict would be that I wanted my hurt feelings to be recognized. I believe it was unintentional on their part, and nothing about addressing it in this particular instance was going to build or better the relationship going forward.
And since I didn’t learn the lesson well enough that time, I got another opportunity to be tested! This time I had a different take on a situation than someone else did. I held a great conversation in my head about how right I was!
But once again, Proverbs 13:10 slipped into my thoughts. Did it really matter who was right? And even if I was correct in my assessment, was it worth potentially damaging the relationship? Thankfully I realized that it wasn’t before I started the conversation.
So what’s the moral of the story here? I’ll make it brief.
~Anytime you’re about to enter into a conflict or argument, ask yourself if your pride is involved. Are you practicing meekness and humility or just wanting your own way?
~Hide God’s Word in your heart. The older I get, the more difficult it is, but memorizing Bible verses is important. It’s especially helpful to focus on those Scriptures that can help you in areas where you struggle.
~Praise God for His Word and His Holy Spirit that convicts us of sin.
~Thank the Lord that when our flesh overrides His convicting of our souls, He forgives our sin as we come to Him and repent.
Is there a verse that God’s been using in your life lately in some way? I’d love to hear about it!