Pride & Dignity
We could talk about how every person’s selfish and self-destructive attitudes, actions, and affections disqualify us from deserving anything from God. Pride is a problem because it assumes I deserve something God based on something I have accomplished in myself, and due to sin I can never accomplish the level of goodness that God requires.
This is true, as far as it goes.
But here’s the thing: life with God has never been about human beings deserving something from God because they ever fulfilled some ideal of being quote “good enough.”
How could God, who creates and sustains the universe with a word, ever owe a created thing anything?
The truth is God doesn’t love people because they are owed it. He loves people because that’s just who he is. That’s what he does. He loves.
And this is the life of the universe.
We owe other people the appropriate honor, dignity, and concern not because of they’ve done anything to deserve it, but because regardless of what they’ve done, they are precious in God’s sight. We do deserve to be humbled sometimes because we forget that if we are lovely, it’s only because we are finally coming around to living the light of the truth that God loves us, just because he made us.
If we are in trouble as human beings, it because we reject and refuse that love in a thousand sinful, selfish, and destructive ways. We think we can live on our own apart from God’s love.
Humans have done this since the Garden of Eden!
We’ve all participated in the rejection of God’s love at some level, and this is the fundamental human problem. In this way we can see how pride is very much at the root of many sins, if not all sin. We all need to be accepted, to be loved, to be in fellowship; that’s the root desire that gets twisted into pride.
When by the grace of God we embrace humility as the Way of Christ, we realize we already have what we desire in him.
It’s been there the whole time.
Jesus invites all through the waters of baptism to his table, to his feast, to his banquet, to find true spiritual nourishment in the true bread and true drink of his own cleansing body and blood offered for the sins of the world.
We can come humbly to Christ, confessing and receiving him as Lord of our lives, instead of ourselves and find we are lifted up together as participants is Christ’s resurrection, received as friends of God, adopted as brothers and sisters of Jesus, and made co-heirs with Christ in his eternal Kingdom.