Mark Affleck

I Spent 10 Years In The PRIDE SWAMP

March 26, 2021
Spiritual Growth

We’re playing the PRIDE CARD today as we head into the home stretch on this month’s exploration into RECOGNIZING OUR INADEQUACY without God. Please keep an open mind and strap yourself in for the ride.
Nobody should be surprised to see PRIDE show up in the context of recognizing our INADEQUACY without God. Heck, his Word has a list of traits that he despises.
“There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.” Proverbs 6:16–19
PRIDE is a swamp with percolating quicksand teeming with alligators. A swamp that triggers a welter of bad thoughts and bad behaviors. A swamp where pain and despair keep us from: 1) Recognizing our INADEQUACY without God, and 2) Being transformed in the image of Christ.
PRIDE is the sheriff, judge, warden, and executioner of the swamp.
“Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18
How do we end up in the PRIDE SWAMP?
When we stop looking to God for affirmation and turn to the world and its values.  How do we stay out of that swamp? We can start unpacking that question with a quick look at someone who had the right to be PRIDEFUL but stayed out of the swamp. That would be JESUS.
He could have lived with righteous arrogance. But he came to serve, not rule.
“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage…” Philippians 2:5-6.
How do we escape the PRIDE SWAMP and move from worshipping self to serving God? Three things:
Stop looking to the WORLD for your joy.
Stop looking at SERVICE as serving yourself.
Stop judging OTHERS and focus on your sin.
But in the end, it comes down to HUMILITY–Christ-like humility—to get us out and keep us out of the world’s PRIDE SWAMP.
I ask God to stop me from aspiring to be exalted by the world and keep me out of the PRIDE SWAMP. To help me trust him instead.
How much time are you spending in the PRIDE SWAMP?
“If anyone thinks they are something when they are not, they deceive themselves.” Galatians 6:3

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