Humility and Pride

Guest Post from Tigersue Today in Sacrament Meeting one of the talks was on Humility and Pride, and although not the first time, but I was once again reminded how much I lack in humility and how much pride I do have. I honestly do not know how to let go of things and give myself completely to the Lord. I find myself being selfish, critical, unbending, and I'm so opinionated that it can get in the way of listening to those around me. It hinders my ability to forgive others and forgive myself. I often find myself feeling like Mr. Darcy, "That once my good opinion is lost, it is lost forever". I don't think I'm that bad but close. I often struggle within myself how to let go of hurts, and wrongs I have felt been put upon me, at the same time I struggle with the harm and hurt I cause others, and even worse am not aware of the harm or hurt I have caused. The Quote given in the talk is this one by C.S. Lewis Pride is essentially competitive - is competitive by its very nature - while the other vices are competitive only , so to speak , by accident. Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man. 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 every one else became equally rich, or clever, or good-looking there would be nothing to be proud about. It is the comparison that makes you proud : the pleasure of being above the rest. Once the element of competition had gone, pride has gone. That is why I say that Pride is essentially competitive in a way the other vices are not. I remember being in High school and really facing this issue of being competitive and it nearly destroyed me and the friendships I had. In College I was much more relaxed, I wanted to do my best, but that didn't mean I had to be better than anyone else. It was such a relief to know if I sat 1st chair it was okay, and if I didn't that was okay too, as long as I did my best, I could rejoice in the best of the other's around me also. Maybe it helped knowing that the conductor really did like me and had trust in me, and I trusted him to do what was best for the group. At that time, I like to think I learned a small bit of humility, it didn't come from competition but from working together as a group. Sometimes I wonder if I have learned that art of humility and lack of competition, I still find it in myself to try to be "better" than someone else, rather than trying to be the best I can. It is a dilemma that I face often. Honestly to be humble is to put ones self into God's hands, and really submitting to his will. The question is, have I ever really done that, and do I really know how to do that. DO I really TRUST that He KNOWS what is best for me, and my husband, and my children, and am I really ready and able to give into that will. Am I willing and able to do what ever He asks whenever He asks, and at this point in my life I would have to say I don't think I'm there. Do I want to be there, I think so but there is a great part of me that shrinks back in fear because I'm afraid of what I will be asked. At the same time I have to ask myself, I must be ready, because frankly what the Lord will send my way will come, ready or not, and I have to be able to get myself ready so the lesson is not so hard to learn. I think this is a tough one for me, and something I really have to get myself to learn, and to learn it quickly. Maybe, just maybe, I will learn it in time, but there is a small voice in my head telling me that I won't and the learning will be hard and very painful. Somehow I have to learn to swallow my Pride, and get on my knees more, swallow my Pride, and forgive more, Swallow my Pride and be more sympathetic, Swallow my Pride and be more patient. Lots more to do in Swallowing my Pride! I think I have a long road to travel, and lots to think and ponder on the way.


Anonymous Proud Daughter of Eve said...

I feel the same way too. I ask for help recognizing promptings but then I'm always trying to rationalize them. "Nah, He's not really asking me to stand by this stranger in the dark and cold. Why would he want that?" I KNOW He knows more than I and has plans I know not of but it's still so hard to let go of my will and follow His.

4/05/2006 01:20:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for your very honest post.

Don't we all have some fault, some shortcoming that makes us wonder if we will eventually fall short of the goal?

But who says we have to conquer all the demons in this life? Who says the job has to be done by the time we leave?

I am as hard on myself as the next person (sometimes I think a lot harder!), but I am learning that just because I recognize the goal doesn't mean I am capable of accomplishing it in this life. Rather I live with a veil and a mortal/fallen body that doesn't allow me to do all my spirit calls out for me to do. But these are the experiences God wants me to have. And as long as I keep making progress in the right direction, I don't know that it matters how far I get, just that I don't give up.


4/05/2006 06:37:00 PM  
Blogger Ian said...

Pride is a big one.

My companion and I were teaching the husband in a non member family, and one day (when we were over for dinner and not for a lesson) he asked me why I thought that most people didn't get baptized. Without thinking about his particular situation, and maybe going on a little inspiration, I sait that most people don't get baptized because of pride. In some ways this is true.

He was baptized shortly after this.

One thing I try to think of is when the Father introduces the Son. He alway says, "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." There is no mention of pride. He is not prideful of his Son, but he is well pleased. I try to follow that example.

I think all of us have pride issues at one level or another.

4/05/2006 07:47:00 PM  
Blogger Heather O. said...

I haven't read what Lewis has said about pride, but I have read what Lewis has said about humility. Humility is when you can truly look at something beautiful, and appreciate it for what it is, instead of thinking, "I could never do that", or even, "I can't believe that person pulled something like that off. She's really not THAT good." Humility is when you live your life never really thinking about yourself, beyond just the idea that you are serving others. You truly lose yourself in everything that you do, because nothing is about you. Other people's accomplishments, other people's pain, beauty, wisdom, etc, none of it is about you. You appreicate life just for what it is and worship God with gratitude for letting you live it.

And you also live by this quote, which is not from Lewis, but from another great philospher, Frasier Crane: "Copernicus called. The universe does not revolve around you!" Love that one.

4/05/2006 10:09:00 PM  
Anonymous dkl said...

Great post. Thanks.

4/05/2006 11:43:00 PM  
Blogger Tigersue said...

Thank you all so much for you great comments. I agree with everything said, there are so many facits to this topic, and I also try to live with the "I am well Pleased" rather than "I'm so proud of you".

4/07/2006 11:50:00 AM  

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