Philippians 1:21 For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.
On my walk with God this morning, I told him I would give my life for him. His response, “Would you give your pride for me?” Ouch!
Until recently, “to die is gain” has been the more attractive option of the above verse. But over the past year or so I’ve experienced a deeper understanding of “to live is Christ”.
It is overwhelming to attempt to comprehend that Christ lives in me. I want everything I do to be Christ’s work not my human efforts. Obviously that is easier said than done. But the concept is wonderful.
I’ve been basking in this new enlightenment for several months. I thought I’d given up my pride because I have stated I am willing to look foolish (in my or others opinion) for the sake of Christ. I’ve stated I am willing to fail (from the human perspective) in order to see God’s perfect power through my failures and weaknesses.
I thought I was over what my husband and I have titled “prideful humility.” That’s the pride that says, “Oh, you go ahead, I don’t need that, you can have it.” Or “I’ll just be unseen; you go ahead and do it your way.” It’s the pride that makes you feel like you have put others first when in reality you’ve simply said, “I’m better than you because I can do without.”
Truth is: without Christ, I am nothing. That truth applies to everyone. When God sends someone in my physical path that thinks they need something more than Christ, am I willing to give up my pride and allow Christ to live in me at that moment?
An issue came up yesterday that greatly irritated me. My prideful humility would say “just let the idiots do it their way and don’t stir up anything that will make them think I need more Zoloft.” But that’s not what I heard God saying in my walk this morning.
Ignorance most often stems from inexperience or just the need to have someone show (not tell) the person how the thoughts apply to their life.
Telling others my thoughts is not too difficult. But, I tend to withhold some thoughts if I sense rejection. Showing takes more time. It takes willingness to listen and understand the experiences of the “ignorant” person (no offense intended). Then I can relate my thoughts and experiences in a way that they will see how it applies to their life and not just mine.
I don’t know exactly what God is leading me to after this. I was pretty proud of myself for stepping out of my comfort zone a year ago. The pride of that has worn off. I’ve settled into another comfort zone. I guess it’s time to step out again. Maybe I’ll leave the pride behind this time. Oh, that’s a scary thought.
Proverbs 11:2 (New Living Translation) Pride leads to disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom.
That’s a tougher choice than the Philippians verse. I’m a bit ignorant on true humility but Christ certainly took the time and painful effort of showing what it looks like. Now will I choose to apply it and gain wisdom or stick with my ignorant head knowledge?
Philippians 2:5-8 (The Message)Think of yourselves the way Christ Jesus thought of himself. He had equal status with God but didn't think so much of himself that he had to cling to the advantages of that status no matter what. Not at all. When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn't claim special privileges. Instead, he lived a selfless, obedient life and then died a selfless, obedient death--and the worst kind of death at that: a crucifixion.