I woke up this morning with a pit in my stomach so big, it was hard to get out of bed. Emotionally, I feel like I’m going through the pain of cancer again. Physically, I am nauseated and lethargic.
I dragged my fatigued body down the stairs more than an hour later than I prefer to rise, and only got up at all because I prayed for help doing so. I looked through the various coffee flavors we collect and pushed one away, telling myself, “I don’t deserve that one today”.
Because all my current suffering is self-induced. Sin-induced. I deserve the bland, flavorless coffee today. The “Sinner’s” coffee. That’ll teach me.
This isn’t a post about being depressed. This isn’t a moment to share that I am in the midst of some major sin. This is just me admitting that I have a problem.
This problem is the supervillain in my story, lurking in the shadows to blast truth out of every good thing. She uses the cloak of invisibility to appear in unexpected ways when I least expect it. She has always been a part of my story, but she’s grown better at disguising herself. She is so crafty, I follow her down paths of destruction time and again. I usually don’t recognize her until true damage has been done. Worst of all, this problem is bigger than me. Stronger than me. I cannot beat her on my own.
Her name is Pride.
My attempts to overcome her result in my own backsliding into her comforting embrace. “But, He gives more grace.” He does not show up to provide back-up, the way I wish. Instead, the Holy Spirit swoops in like the true Hero He is. When I trust in Him, submit to Him, He reflects light on pride so I can see her hideous face. He helps me recognize her voice, and to follow His instead. He provides the instruction, power, and cleansing I need for a pure heart (see James 4:6-10 below). Most of all, He draws near to me so my enemy’s lure is less enticing.
I wish I could throw away the “bad girl” coffee, knowing I’ll never need it again. If His help is real and my redemption is complete, it shouldn’t be an issue, right?
Unfortunately, as long as we are in this phase of life on earth, Pride will thrive. The days are full of her, and opportunities to stray abound. But the help, guidance, and forgiveness from Abba Father will continue to be steadfast and free for those of us who trust in Him. Hallelujah for the One who gives living water and good coffee!
But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you. James 4:6-10