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That Stinking "I" in Pride.

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Faith Imagined: That Stinking "I" in Pride.

Faith Imagined

Alisa Hope Wagner: Christian Writer

June 26, 2009

That Stinking "I" in Pride.

A while back I was reading a book about God's grace, and I had to be honest with God. I didn't quite understand the whole concept of grace. I knew it was important because I've read so much about it, but it was obvious I was missing something. I prayed and asked God to help me gain a better understanding, and I had faith that He would.

God kicked-off my lesson in grace a few days later while I was in the shower. (It seems like God always talks to me in the shower). I was complaining to God about how I always make mistakes and that it feels like no matter what I do, what I read, what I learn; I always say, do or think something wrong. I always fail. I always fall. I always sin.

I was acting like the victim in this thing called life, and I pointed my finger at God and demanded, "Why is life so difficult"? "Why do I always stumble?" "Why do I always do something stupid?"

On my spiritual journey, I have an idea of where I want to be, and no matter how I grow, it feels like I always fall short. The person I want to be doesn't put her foot in her mouth. The person I want to be doesn't have insecurities. The person I want to be doesn't have problems with eating, lusting, lying, gossiping, pride, laziness, blah, blah, blah. The person I want to be is PERFECT!!!

Oh! And that's when God pulled a fast one on me. He uncovered my "I'm-the-victim-attitude" and exposed it for what it really was: pride. I wasn't where I thought I should be and I was upset: pride. I couldn't accept the fact that I was flawed and I made mistakes: pride. I didn't want others know my struggles and watch me stumble: pride. My little pity-party was boiling over the flame called pride.

And after God nicely humbled me there in the shower, He gave me a smile (in my mind's eye) and said gently, "That's why you need my grace."

What I realized is that I didn't want to accept God's grace because my pride was telling me that I should be something that I was not. But I am a woman that says things to friends that I later regret. I am a woman who just ate about 15 Peppermint York Patties without stopping to exert some semblance of self-control. I am a woman who has to fight with feelings of insecurity and inferiority. I am a woman who has to stop herself from judging the actions and decisions of others. I am a woman who's stuck in the middle of a battle between her own will and the will of the Holy Spirit.

I am not perfect, and I will never be. I will fall on a daily basis and those around me will see it. I can't put on a show for others or for me. Accepting God's grace frees me from being hard on myself. I am not loved because I try to be the best Christian girl possible. I am loved because God created me and He chooses to love me. There is nothing that I can do to make Him love me more or less. I will make mistakes, and I should not care who sees them because I have grace. And I won't use those mistakes to justify playing the victim role again.


Just today I read some of Jeanne Guyon's writings that spoke on this topic. She lived in the 1600s, which comforted me because I realized that even women in the 1600s dealt with this problem and overcame it. She wrote:


"Always guard yourself from being anxious because of your faults. First of all, such distress only stirs up the soul and distracts you to outward things. Secondly, your distress really springs from a secret root of pride. What you are experiencing is, in fact, a love of your own worth. To put it in other words, you are simply hurt and upset at seeing what you really are. If the Lord should be so merciful as to give you a true spirit of His humility, you will not be surprised at your faults, your failures, or even your own basic nature."


Thank You, God, for Your grace. Help me to see the beauty in holes of my weakness, for that is where Your glory shines through.

"But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made
perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my
weakness, so that Christ's power may rest on me."

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35 Comments:

Blogger Autumnseer said...

You have no idea how much that post (where I clearly saw myself) helped me. I have such despair over my body and not making changes though I desire it. I know I struggle much with pride too. Well, anyway, God worked through you to me this morning. Thank you.

8:08 AM  
Blogger crissy #1 mommy said...

This is an awesome post!!!

9:07 AM  
Blogger Lauren said...

wonderful post --- thank you so much!!

9:53 AM  
Blogger Beth.. One Blessed Nana said...

oh, wow.. did I write this?? ha!

This was just what I needed today. I came here through Linda and I am so glad that I did. I can tell this is a place that I will enjoy visiting often!

Thanks for this word - Beth

10:13 AM  
Blogger 3 Blessings said...

This is fabulous! I deal with this every day too. I am so thankful that you posted this. It is such a strong reminder that He is all that we need and He always will be. It is never anything that I do on my own, but everything He does through me.

Have you heard the song, Perfect People by Natalie Grant. It has become my new theme song - Ha!
Have a beautiful day!
Amy

10:33 AM  
Blogger thatdesigngal said...

Hey there, what a great post. I can now see that I am struggling with same things. And I have a better way of describing them now. Thanks for your honesty. I will have to come back and read it again. Looking forward to more.

Stopping by from SITS!

~Mary
www.thatdesigngal.blogspot.com

10:40 AM  
Blogger sherrinda said...

That was beautiful and so incredibly true.

1:34 PM  
Blogger Karen said...

This really blessed me today...thanks for sharing what God gave your heart...

1:54 PM  
Blogger ~ Being Woven said...

Thank you, Alisa Hope... God leads me to the tiny speck on the map where He can teach me and remind me of my weaknesses and His strengths. Your post was that one of many others our there where God met me today! May He bless you this day, ~ linda

3:15 PM  
Blogger OceanDreams said...

Thank you for the wonderful post. I've been struggling with some of the same thoughts and often think why am I never good enough? God's love and His showing us of our pride and helping us to become humble can heal the most imperfect person. We are beautiful in our imperfection.

6:15 PM  
Blogger Karina said...

The irony in it all is this---we are never "victims" in all the ordinary things of life. But, Jesus was a victim---just by His very being. I try to remind myself of this. I've suffered nothing compared to him (and I've been through a lot).

7:09 PM  
Blogger greedygrace said...

A wonderful and thoughtful post!

I came by to welcome you to SITS! We're happy to have you with us!

10:04 PM  
Blogger Mommyof2girlz said...

Stopping by to Welcome you to SITS, great to meet you!! :)

10:05 PM  
Blogger Skip and Susie said...

Isn't it funny that I always think these same thoughts and say to myself, "I must be the only one still struggling with the same ole things." I don't know why we think there is a level we will one day reach when God's word is clear about the fact that we will always need God's grace here on this earth. Your writing is awesome Alisa! I know I always say it, but I really ALWAYS mean it:)

7:05 PM  
Blogger Denise said...

The "eye" in I keeps us from the fullness of the Father........

8:16 PM  
Blogger sandy said...

I stopped by to welcome you to SITS! It's great to have you in the SITStahood!

7:10 AM  
Blogger Rebecca said...

Great post! Thanks for the encouraging word over at my blog, too!

I guess the old man (or woman in our case) keeps rearing her ugly head, even though she's supposed to be dead! Well, we press on, right?!

I'm going to have to look up Jeanne Guyon's writing. I think she and I are kindred spirits!!! ;^)

Have a blessed day!

11:16 AM  
Blogger Valerie said...

Oh my goodness! I could have written that post. I am sure you did it so much better! So glad I stopped by here today!

I was stopping by to welcome you to SITS! I am so glad you joined up with us!!

5:36 PM  
Blogger Joy said...

Thank you for sharing this testimony!

Stopping by to say welcome to the SITS community!

8:49 PM  
Blogger Two Pretty Little Skirts said...

Stopping by from SITS to say welcome to our wonderful SITStahood!

Dawn

1:01 PM  
Blogger California Isoms said...

Wow. Thanks for writing this. So true and what a great reminder. You could have been writing this about me! Thanks for helping to point me to the truth...as much as it may hurt. =)

Cory =)

5:22 PM  
Blogger The Mom @ Babes in Hairland said...

What a wonderful post. You put things very nicely. Here to welcome you to SITS and say hi! Have a great day.

9:39 PM  
Blogger Veronica Lee said...

Hi, I'm visiting from MBC. Great blog.

10:39 PM  
Blogger Trish said...

I feel like Grace and Peace are friends. So glad God talks to you where ever you are... even in the shower. Funny he knows when you are willing to listen!

8:14 AM  
Blogger Bernadine said...

Thank you for this wonderful post. I can identify with so much of what you wrote.

10:46 AM  
Blogger Martha said...

Very thought provoking post. Visiting from SITS to Welcome you.

I love my brokenness, my cracks allow the light to come through.

If I didn't struggle, make mistakes, how could I have compassion which is a sign of God's Grace?
Thank you.

11:52 AM  
Blogger Cami said...

You know, worldly-minded people never focus in on where they need to change; they point outward all the time, placing the blame on others and their circumstances. The fact that we care, as Christians, about where we need to change, is another sign of His grace; always calling us up and higher. As we mature, we care less and less about where we fall short, though, and we care more and more about extolling God in our journey - but it has to begin, and it has begun in you...it's a beautiful work! :)

7:01 AM  
Blogger Paige said...

Just popped over from SITS! What a great blog. Hope to visit again soon.

8:47 AM  
Blogger Suzann @ Lavender and Roses said...

Wow!
Here I am just popping in from SITS and I'm so touched by this post that I want to close my computer and just ponder your words. Amazing.

Here's wishing you and yours and amazing, wonderful, and love-filled (and grace-filled) 4th of July.

8:38 AM  
Blogger Ms Cupcake said...

Dropping by from sits. Have a great Sunday.

Ms Cupcake
Zen Cupcake

1:58 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Thanks for visiting my blog and for the kind comment! I'm so glad you stopped by, so that I would find your blog! You have encouraged *and* prodded me a bit this morning. :)

I recently bought "Experiencing the Depths of Jesus Christ" by Jeanne Guyon...I'm really looking forward to reading it!

6:48 AM  
Blogger City Girl said...

Visiting from SITS!

9:59 AM  
Blogger Melissa Miller said...

Hello Alisa,
I just found your lovely and inspiring blog over at SITS.
I'll be back to visit you often.

Have a wonderful and blessed day.
Warmly, Melissa :)

10:21 AM  
Blogger Melissa Miller said...

Hi Alisa,
I came back to vote for your blog. I realized I had forgotten to do that earlier.

Thank you for your kind visit and following as well. ~Melissa :)

11:03 AM  
Blogger Susan (Between Naps on the Porch) said...

Hi Faith...just voted for you at Blog Luxe! You surely do inspire! :-) Susan

11:50 AM  

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