Up or Down

Proverbs 29:23 A man’s pride shall bring him low: but honour shall uphold the humble in spirit.”

In this world today, there are many philosophies on how to succeed, how to prosper, and how to advance. Some employ Darwin’s theory “survival of the fittest,” thinking only the strong survive. What they don’t tell you is that path is often lonely, harsh, and cruel.

For the world, selfishness is a needed commodity. “Looking out for number one” is a principle many employs. Yet, for the child of God, we have a far different ‘number one.’

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

For the child of God to employ the world’s principle of self as the ‘number one,’ is completely disregarding our ownership. I am no longer my own. I belong to God. He purchased me at such a cost that to ignore Him in any portion of my life, is allowing pride to rule.

The world puts on a good face when they believe they have power and influence. We believe worldly acceptance, thinking that a position and power will define us. Te world embraces all the trappings of that lifestyle and gathers to themselves likeminded people to bolster their egos and quell any doubts.

For the child of God to experience honor, it is an unlikely path. For the Christian, the way up is down. 

Matthew 18:4 Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”

The power brokers on Wall Street would think it absurd to have a childlike spirit. They would see it as simple, weak, and unwise. To the natural man, the things of God seem strange, foreign, and backward. Yet, if we do not embrace the path God has for us, we miss a wonderful opportunity to see miracles happen.

Pride is the key to stopping the Spirit of God from any blessing or promotion in this life. Pride is the ingredient for contention. Pride is a silent killer. The only way it is detected is by its fruit. Foolishness, wickedness, disobedience, scorn, contention, criticism, and shame are a few of pride’s fruit.

So, each of us should cultivate a spirit of humility that extends where our pride begins. Selfishness feeds pride. A wounded spirit leaves an open door for pride.

Unforgiveness is another aspect of pride we often do not address. 

We tend to hold on to a certain level of justice because we feel that the other person somehow ‘got away with it.’ We feel as if they should pay something to satisfy our sense of justice.

Forgiveness should release the other from all debt. Anything short of that is conditional upon satisfying us and not God.

Ephesians 4:32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.”

The child of God is totally forgiven. Our Father tells us to do the same. 

It is not always easy. But, once we take the first step, God will guide us the rest of the way. 

James 4:10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.

1 Peter 5:6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time

It is God who will lift us to a position. May we truly see with spiritual eyes enough to see that the way up is down.

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