The Book of Psalms continues to encourage my walk and enthrall my mind as I journey through this relapse. I pray these simple thoughts bless your heart as He so distinctly blessed mine.
“I will make mention of Thy righteousness, Thine alone.” Psalm 71:16b
I have been in that place. That ugly, ugly place where I was deceptively convinced that I actually had some pretty awesome attributes to bring to the table in my ministry relationship with God. Not only did I feel that way, but I had friends who verbally confirmed my awesomeness.
Short story. I eventually came to believe my own press and became wickedly proud in the confines of my own heart and mind. (Naughty, naughty!)
This pride then led me on to become willful, disregarding the gentle voice of the Holy Spirit when He prompted me about certain decisions I made. I also became unteachable, reading God’s Holy Word from my point of view as though He wrote it merely to confirm my grandiose thoughts. I had forgotten something intrinsic to the Christian walk: my “righteousness is as filthy rags” (Isaiah 64:6). My righteousness. Me in all my own radiant glory. Me when the world acclaims my accomplishments. Filthy rags.
I abhor thinking about myself then. The pride which underpinned my visible Christian walk was out-and-out root rot. Plain and simple. It needed my Creator to deal it a loving blow to enable me to truly reflect His glory in even the smallest of ways. And with a grateful sigh of relief, I can assure you that He has wonderfully taken me in hand. His hand.
I find now that when offered a compliment of any kind, the words “Praise God” quickly tumble from my lips. Not gratuitously, just simply felt and meant. For I now know, deep within my being, that if I have anything praiseworthy to offer, it originated in His design and it transpired through His craftsmanship.
Not that I’m perfect! Ha! Not by a long shot! That little snippet of pride loves to rear up her ugly head and holler out, “Hey! Look at me!” I must then deal another death blow, because if I’m about the business of extolling myself (even in my own mind) then I can’t be about the business of extolling Him…the only One worthy.
Take a moment. Listen in on your own thoughts. Ask yourself, “Whose righteousness gets mentioned here?” If the righteousness receiving glory is not Christ’s alone, cast it out.
“For Thy righteousness, O God, reaches to the heavens, Thou who hast done great things; O God, who is like Thee?” Psalm 71:19