“For the sin of their mouths, the words of their lips,
let them be trapped in their pride.”
— PSALM 59:12
When I read this verse about pride, I think of the proud standing in the middle of a glass box, contained.
The proud refuses to lay down her pride.
The walls of this glass box become thicker and thicker, muting the words of those around the proud.
With the thickening walls, the distance between the proud and her spouse becomes greater and greater.
Strife happens more and more; dysfunction becomes the pattern of life until one day either her spouse walks away or the proud climbs out of the box and never returns.
The picture I just described, I don’t think anyone wishes it for their marriage.
And yet, if there’s unrepented pride residing in our hearts, that’s where our marriages are headed.
The going rate for divorce (even within the Christian community) is 50%. FIFTY!
It is outrageous. I wonder how many of these marriages were affected by unrepented pride, and how many of these marriages could have been saved if the proud would lay down their pride.
Before I go on, let me say that I understand it takes two to tango. Please don’t go into defense mode and list out alllll the ways your husband has been prideful (or sinful in other ways) in your marriage. Today, I’m only talking to you the wife. I want this to be a conversation between just you and me. Don’t think of this as me pointing my fingers at you. Think of this as an open conversation over coffee, doing a heart check on each other because our common goal is to glorify God with our everything.
HOUSTON, WE HAVE A PROBLEM
“Pride goes before destruction,
and a haughty spirit before a fall.”
— PROVERBS 16:18
“One’s pride will bring him low,
but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.”
— PROVERBS 29:23
“Love the LORD, all you his saints!
The LORD preserves the faithful
but abundantly repays the one who acts in pride.”
— PSALM 31:23
Let’s do a quick Inductive Bible study here.
Based on these verses,
– what do you observe to be true about pride?
– What is the outcome of one’s pride?
– What does God think of pride?
– what will happen if there’s pride in the marriage?
As these verses tell us, no good things come from pride, but only destructions and downfalls.
MELTING PRIDE WITH THE RIGHT VIEW OF SELF
In the book The Freedom of Self-Forgetfulness, Tim Keller says pride is being “overinflated, swollen, distended beyond its proper size“.
C.S. Lewis explains in Mere Christianity that, “pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next person. We say that people are proud of being rich, or clever, or good-looking, but they are not. They are proud of being richer, or cleverer, or better-looking than others. If everyone else became equally rich, or clever, or good-looking there would be nothing to be proud about.”
Pride is the competitiveness of having more than the next person;
it is the need to prove we are important and worthy.
While pride is destructive, God can melt it away if we look at how He views us.
“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.”
— 1 PETER 2:9
“For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”
— EPHESIANS 2:10
“In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will,”
— EPHESIANS 1:11
Looking at these verses, make note of everything that talks about who you are to God.
You are His chosen one.
You are a royalty belonging to the Kingdom of God.
You are God’s special possession.
You are His Masterpiece.
You are made for good works that God handpicked for you before you were even born.
You are the beneficiary of His inheritance.
In God’s eyes, you are the masterpiece He cannot be more proud of.
His ultimate opinion of you makes it unnecessary for you to one-up others.
You are important and worthy of Him – that’s all that matters.
COMING TO THE THRONE OF GRACE
So how should we respond if we have pride in our hearts?
Come to the throne of grace and repent.
You are never too far gone for God’s Grace to reach you.
God opposes the proud but embraces the humble.
Will you make the choice right now to lay down your pride at the feet of His Throne and see yourself with God’s eyes?
After your repentance, go to your spouse and ask for his forgiveness.
Ask him to pray for you that you will stay humbled; pray that he will forgive and forget and won’t hold it against you.
“Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ
and become one with him. I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ. For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith.”
— PHILIPPIANS 3:8-9