Thursday, December 19, 2013

Pride vs. Faith in Self

Written Dec. 17, 2013

The difference between believing in one’s self and having pride.

The difference is at the center. Who is there? You or God?

You believe that you can do it; but because of who? You or God?

Confidence that you can achieve and be great; but who is the reason for it?

When you have pride, you feel that you need to be able to accomplish tasks on your own; you are in the center and in charge. Pride; unable to ask for help; feeling weak when unable.

Having faith in yourself and believing in yourself because God made you good is something else. God is in the center. I can do ALL THINGS…here’s the important part that makes the difference…through CHRIST who give me strength. (Phil. 4:13)

I have been reading Rob Bell’s book Velvet Elvis when all of this hit me.

I have pride, and more of it than I would like to admit. This is usually not apparent and easily hidden in my daily life. But since moving and being thrown into a world and culture unknown to me, my pride has surfaced more often than before, and in deeper ways.

I have become frustrated because I am not able to do things that everyone else can do. I have a hard time learning language. I don’t chop food well and it hurts my hand doing it for hours when we help prepare food for weddings or funerals. I forget places and people that we have seen and I feel that I should remember them. I am not Super Woman like I want to be-and it shows big time here. I don’t have tricks to make up for my short comings and I can’t hide behind anything. My Super Woman powers don’t work. And I get upset at myself for failing. My pride damages my mood . I have feelings of inadequacy and am too afraid to ask for help—because why? I should be able to do it myself – pride.

So here is what I have learned (and am still learning as I forget it and then remember and then forget and fail and then remember and forgive): I am not Super Woman. I am just Elle. But being ‘just Elle’ is more than just Elle. When I am just me, and me first, I am the person that God wants me to be, the person God made me to be, good and bad. I am a child of God, loved through and through. I am a part of creation. I was created ‘good,’ which means that I am not perfect. But because I am good and not perfect (finished) there is room for growth. I am not a static being; I am a growing, changing, forming being. And I can do all things because of the One who created me. 

Now back to pride and having faith in one’s self. My pride is because I think I can do it; and frustration sets in when I can’t ask for help (damaging my pride) and lose hope in succeeding. Having faith in my self is knowing that I can because of God. I become full when I believe in myself  and understand that God already does. God chose me. No work of mine can make God believe in me more or less. And asking for help- showing my weakness- only allows for other’s strengths to shine. Not only do I accept who I am fully, but I allow space for God to do her work and let others share the light and strength they have been given.

All of these thoughts were formed from words written by Rob Bell in his book Velvet Elvis, specifically the fifth and sixth movements (chapters). 

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