Every so often it is necessary to speak truth to someone. As I prepare to do so, I sometimes think, “this is a good thing” because he or she “needs” to be shown this area of possible blindness in his or her life. In the past it would be unlikely that I would first search my own heart and see how that very thing might lurk within me. Today, however, the story is different because I know how deceitful sin is and how cleverly our flesh disguises, hides and then denies its existence. Praise God that He is bigger than my deepest, most hidden sin and that He is committed to nothing less than holiness for His children!
Proverbs 15:33 reads, “The fear of the Lord teaches a man wisdom, and humility comes before honor.” Lately, with each opportunity to go and speak, my gracious Father has shown me a pride in my heart that was lurking just around the corner, out of sight. So before I could attempt to address the speck I had to repent and remove the beam. I had to confess, repent and offer my thoughts and my mouth to God for cleansing and purification.
“Do not offer the parts of your body to sin as instruments of wickedness but rather offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life, and offer the parts of your body to Him as instruments of righteousness.” Romans 6:13
“Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” Matthew 7:52
Today, once again, I offered my tongue as an instrument of righteousness rather than for any form of wickedness. From Hannah’s prayer in 1 Samuel 2:3 I read, “Do not keep talking so proudly or let your mouth speak such arrogance – for the Lord is a God who knows and by Him deeds are weighed.” Who am I to weigh the thoughts, deeds and heart of any other person? Only God has the power to know the thoughts and intents of my heart or yours, and His call is for us to daily examine our life for anything that exalts itself above the knowledge of Him.
My question for you: Do you see signs in your own life of a prideful heart? What is the fruit that has been produced by it? Selah
Stephanie Paul serves as part of the Addiction Recovery Team at America’s Keswick as Director of Women’s Addiction Ministry. She has been married for almost 30 years to Sesky Paul who is a graduate of the Colony of Mercy. Stephanie serves alongside him as Care Group leaders in their church. They have two grown children. Her single focus in ministry at Keswick is to image Christ in grace and truth to wounded and hurting women, encouraging them to make Jesus the truest Lover of their soul and the One in whom all hope lies.