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Maybe more of us struggle with pride than we thought. Just as my concealed pride once moved me toward death, so the acknowledgement of my own pride moves me toward life by causing me to cling more fiercely to the righteousness of Christ.
Edwards says, “For the humble Christian, the more the world is against him, the more silent and still he will be, unless it is in his prayer closet, and there he will not be still.” Humility approaches God with humble assurance in Christ Jesus.
If either the “humble” or the “assurance” are missing in that equation, our hearts very well might be infected with pride.
We fight the sins that have an impact on how others view us, and make peace with the ones that no one sees.
We have great success in the areas of holiness that have highly visible accountability, but little concern for the disciplines that happen in secret.
It may even be lurking in the prayers we throw upward for our friends that are — subtly or not — tainted with exasperated irritation.
Again Edwards writes, “Christians who are but fellow-worms ought at least to treat one another with as much humility and gentleness as Christ treats them.” When pride lives in our hearts, we’re far more concerned with others’ perceptions of us than the reality of our hearts.
Some of us have no shortage of boldness before God, but if we’re not careful, we can forget that he is God.
Edwards writes, “Some, in their great rejoicing before God, have not paid sufficient regard to that rule in Psalm — ‘Worship the Lord with reverence, and rejoice with trembling.’” Others of us feel no confidence before God.
Pride will paint even our ugliness in sin as beautiful and commendable.
We can’t conclude that we don’t struggle with pride because we don’t see pride in our hearts.