This week I saw a lot of pride in myself. We were discussing contextualization, culture, worldview, and other deeply personal topics, and I found myself feeling horribly offended and attacked. I also felt an overwhelming desire to be Right, and to have the last word on everything. I felt like Elihu, Job’s youngest friend:
“For I am full of words; the spirit within me constrains me. Behold, my belly is like wine that has no vent; like new wineskins ready to burst. I must speak, that I may find relief; I must open my lips and answer. I will not show partiality to any man or use flattery toward any person.”
So, when I saw this in myself, I apologized to God and asked him to humble me. And he did.
What was really cool about it, was that I got to see God’s method of sanctification and discipline in my life, once again.
“The LORD will strike Egypt, striking but healing; so they will return to the LORD, and He will respond to them and will heal them” (Isaiah 19:22)
I’ve seen this in my life a few times. When I ask God for more love, or patience, or humility, he usually responds with a twofold response: a strike and a healing. His discipline hurts, but he is faithful to heal. My day of embarrassment was painful to me, but at the end of the day my team showed me so much love, and God spoke to me through our devotions, assuring me that he “opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” It was like he was explaining to me why he let me feel like dirt all day. He isn’t out to get me, he’s out to give grace to me, in his own perfect way. Thank you, God.