Pride isn’t fussy

A while back I posted this on negative pride, the idea that those who have a low opinion of themselves seek to be the centre of attention because of it.  I came across this quote from Tim Keller this morning which I think is  helpful in this regard.

the opposite of thinking highly of ourselves is not thinking less of ourselves, but thinking of ourselves less. 

The more I look at myself, whether it’s with boastful or degrading thoughts, I will reinforce my belief that I am the centre of my universe.  Pride isn’t fussy in that respect, it’ll let me live as the hero or the villain as long as I’m centre stage and playing the lead role.

It’s only as I think less of myself and look more to Christ that I’m truly able to defeat the pride of my heart, by allowing him to rule it.


A prayer against the idols of my heart

Thanks to Scotty Smith for his A prayer about the functional boss of my heart

 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Col. 3:15

Dear Lord Jesus, today, like every day, somebody or something is going to gain the upper hand on my heart. My heart will be swayed, captured and ruled. Some entity will be the “boss of me”—my functional king.

It could be my bitterness, pettiness, or cowardice. It could be the shaming power of darkness or the alluring power of lust. It could be overbearing or aggravating people. It could be my greed to have a little more or my obsession to be a lot different. It could be religion or my hatred of religion. It could be old regrets or new fantasies. It could be food, success or approval, but I will live as the submissive citizen of some reign(s) today.

But in light of this Scripture, and by the faith you’ve given me, right now, I choose your peace as the ruler of my heart, as the “boss of me,” as the centering and sending power for this one day. And who knows peace better than you, Jesus? You are the Prince of Peace! On the cross you secured God’s peace with me and my peace with God. The enmity and hostility between us have been obliterated and eradicated. Peace with God is now a legal right of mine, a done deal, a settled issue. How can I not overflow with gratitude as this day begins and as it continues?

Lord Jesus, please make this legal right a personal delight—an actual power mightily at work in my heart today and in all my relationships. The peace you gives does much more than simply calm my restless, wandering heart. You peace is the power of reconciling love. You make enemies friends. You humble stubborn people. You soften hard people. You make angry people gentle.

Because you have forgiven me, I will choose to forgive others. Because you have forgiven me, I will choose to ask forgiveness from others. Because you are at peace with me, I will do everything within my power to live at peace with others. So very Amen I pray, in your holy and persistent name.