The price is cheap, but the cost is high
Pride has been my nemesis the last few years. It is one of those things that once exposed, is impossible to hide. It is a choice to weed it out, or live with it in plain sight, and both options seem miserable. We can hide pride under the label of “confidence” for a long time. I’ve always had a healthy amount of confidence, but the exposure of pride rooted within held some raw wounds. As I looked at 1 Corinthians 13 "Love is..." list, I saw that both pride and boasting are on the list. I asked Daly what the difference was and she had such a great answer. Pride is a root of the heart and boasting is an action that stems from the heart issue.
Anyone who knows me well can tell you that I get excited about everything and anything. I am usually just as excited about a small gift left on my front porch, or some time to read a book as I am about going on vacation. Ok, my husband would say that may be extreme, but not by much. And when I get excited, I like to share – but oversharing excitement can look like boasting, even when its well-intended.
Social media is the essence of boasting in our culture today. Virtual boasting has the potential to ruin relational depth in reality. One quick scan of my social media pages and one could see I am not eliminating myself from this dilemma. Where does the line in the sand go between boasting and confidence? Or where does the line go between boasting and sharing excitement? The price of boasting is cheap, but the cost is gut wrenchingly high.
As with everything on the list of 1 Corinthians “Love is…,” pride is a matter of the heart. Since God has exposed my own pride, I have a new filter. How will a friend, or even someone I desire to be a friend receive this? Does it feel boastful? Does it make me look superior? Is there a benefit to someone else or is it just a way for others to try and measure their life against mine?
In the Bible, Paul claims His confidence is in Christ and that without Christ He is nothing (Philippians 3:3). If I can fully embrace the same, knowing my successes and giftings come from a gracious God and not from my own strength or my own manifested superiority, then there is no room for pride, which means there is no room for boastful talk. When we embrace humility, more are welcomed in our circle. If we choose the filter of humility when we reach out to a friend, share exciting news, re-tell a story, listen to a challenge, or step into conflict – there won’t be room for boastful behavior. Pride and humility cannot exist in the same place. To eliminate boastful behavior we must first start digging at the root of the pride that exists at our core.
As we desire to lead with love and have relationships based on biblical love, remember, pride has no room at the table. Boasting will creep in, it always does as part of our human nature, but remembering that our confidence rests in Christ alone keeps our heart in check, then our ability to lead with humility becomes possible.
ARTWORK BY: Lauren Garner of Willow & Stone Designs.
To see more of her beautifully creative artwork, check her out on Instagram @willowandstonedesigns .