“Pride goes before destruction and haughtiness before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18 (NLV)
When I was in my first year of college, I had a job on campus as an outreach coordinator. At the Bible school I attended we were required to do service projects throughout the year and my job was to help people get connected with the right organization to do these projects.
Every year we would have different organizations come to the school for a “ministry fair” of sorts. They would be able to talk with students about how they could serve in their organizations and the students could explore whether that specific ministry would be where they could best serve.
During one of those ministry fairs, I was taking one of the organization leaders to their specific room where they could interact with students and as we were walking across the campus he began to ask me questions about the school. Even though it was my first year at the school, I was fairly informed and was able to answer most of his questions. When we got to the room, I turned to tell him that it was nice to meet him and that I hoped everything would go well for him. He then asked, “What year in school are you? You seem so mature are you a senior?”
I told him that I was just a freshman and he seemed quite surprised. Well, as I’m sure you can imagine, that went straight to my head. I told him thank you very much, stood up much straighter and walked out of the room with a very fat head! And then promptly tripped and fell down a whole flight of stairs!
I lay at the bottom unhurt but much humbled. I couldn’t help but admit how appropriate that fall was for me and that verse from Proverbs about pride going before a fall popped into my head.
Years later, pride still continues to be a struggle in my life.
Just the other day, my sister pointed out to me how arrogant and prideful I have been in my interactions with people I work with. Unfortunately, I had to admit that she was right.
Just when I think that I have conquered an area of sin in my life, it pokes its ugly head out of the hole and I am once again facing my sinful nature in all its depravity.
I can’t help but wonder if this isn’t right where Satan wants me to be – thinking I’ve conquered an area of my life and won’t have to be concerned with it anymore. (Pride once again!) How vulnerable and susceptible I make myself when I’ve let down my guard by taking my eyes off of Jesus and putting them on myself.
I’m reminded of another Proverb (Proverbs 26:11 NLV) that says, “As a dog returns to its vomit, so a fool repeats his foolishness.” Isn’t that one of the most beautiful verses in the Bible – NOT! This picture is horrible! And it’s even worse when I think that I am like that dog when I return continually to my sin.
How do I keep from returning? By staying on guard; surrendering to the Holy Spirit with my ear tuned to His leadings and my eyes focused on Him.
What area of struggle do you find yourself going back to continually? Where have you dropped your guard and given Satan a foothold?