THE SIN OF TAKING OURSELVES TOO SERIOUSLY — PART 1

I am not the center of the universe?

Who Is The Center Of The Universe?

“I” am not the center of the universe. Unfortunately, we find it easy to have an intellectual understanding of that truth, but we find it difficult to grasp that fact emotionally. That results in a strange irony. We each take ourselves far more seriously than anyone does. That is, we each lack humility.

Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.” — Rick Warren

https://checkyourfact.com/2019/06/30/fact-check-cs-lewis-mere-christianity-humility-thinking-less-yourself/

Pride Versus Humility

Does thinking less of yourself seem like an odd way to be humble? Then consider jilldomschot‘s observation. What happens when we lack humility?

As a young woman, I used to make people, especially men, very angry, but I was never accused of having emotional arguments. I’ve only been accused of that after the age of forty, when I decided that emotions were important to humanity, even more important than logic when it comes to human interaction and connection. However, my ability to grasp logic is still unfortunately a point of pride for me that needs to be eradicated if I’m to move forward. I can’t go backwards; I understand that deeply. I’m therefore stuck in a state of apathy. That sounds emotional, doesn’t it? That’s because no one can get around emotion. At best, most people won’t acknowledge they are making decisions and arguments based off emotions and will rationalize — that is, use reason — after the fact. Rationalization is for a materialistic population that prides itself off eschewing emotion. This obviously will create much psychological conflict, which one sees in the world around. Ultimately, our culture has the special distinction of worshipping logic while simultaneously leaking emotion out the edges and never learning critical thinking or logic in school. We worship something *most of us* don’t understand.

from => https://jilldomschot.wordpress.com/2022/12/17/yearly-reflection/

The Human Heart

Pride — arrogance and haughtiness — is the emotional response we experience when we are too focused on our self. The Bible condemns arrogance and haughtiness, but it does not have much to say about emotions. Instead, the Bible says a great deal about the heart.

To put it another way when the heart goes you go and when the heart stops you stop. Ironically there are some similarities between the physical heart and the spiritual heart. As the physical heart is central to life and living, the spiritual heart is central to every aspect of your life. When the Bible speaks about the heart it is really referring to the mind, will, and emotions.

Every choice you make, every decision you make, everything you do flows out of what is in your heart. That’s why the Bible gives us scriptures like these.

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. – Proverbs 4:23

As water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart. – Proverbs 27:19

A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. What you say flows from what is in your heart. – Luke 6:45 (NLT)

from => https://www.biblestudytools.com/bible-study/topical-studies/what-does-the-bible-say-about-the-heart.html

So it is that when we speak of a man’s or woman’s heart, that is not just a commentary on their medical condition.

The prophet Jeremiah saw most his society engaged in practices God despises, including the sacrifice of infants to idols. A man of God Jeremiah reluctantly obeyed God’s painful command to prophesy to his people. He told his people of the punishment the Lord would bring upon them. Jeremiah wept about the condition of the hearts of his people.

Jeremiah 17:9 New American Standard Bible

“The heart is more deceitful than all else
And is desperately sick;
Who can understand it?

Can you or I take a proper measure of our self? Can we not more accurately assess the faults of others? Yet when I am too arrogant and haughty, who am I to correct anyone else? At best each of us can only strive to see faults in others and look for those faults in our self.

Matthew 7:1-5 New American Standard Bible

“Do not judge, so that you will not be judged. For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you. Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and look, the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye!

So, let us look in each other’s eyes. Let us strive to discover in others what evils reside in our own hearts.

To Be Continued

9 thoughts on “THE SIN OF TAKING OURSELVES TOO SERIOUSLY — PART 1

Add yours

  1. I think learning how to laugh at yourself and being comfortable with it is a sign of both maturity and confidence and helps people remain humble. Definitely tough to do at times but laughing certainly beats crying!

    1. Agreed! That’s a profound observation.

      What is the difference between laughing and crying? Attitude.

      Our attitude is the one thing our Lord expects us to control. Whether we hate someone or love them depends upon our attitude.

  2. Amen, Tom! Yes, taking ourselves too seriously is a sin. Somebody smart once said “if we learn to laugh at ourselves well never run out of material.” Humor can help to keep us humble.

    I like what Jill said about having pride in our own ability to grasp logic. Me too! I grew up within atheism, which was all about having pride in our own capacity for reason and our own alleged logic. That’s one reason why I like the verse about “lean not into your own understanding…” What’s more irrational and crazy than believing in God? Placing all your faith in a random bit of biological goo that sprung up from nothingness and is controlled by meaningless chemical reactions. What one declares to be true might be the result of reason and logic or perhaps you just ate too much cold pizza and you’re having a bad reaction? Logic and reason without the context the Lord provides, simply has no authority.

    1. Thanks for the comment. I particularly enjoyed this part.

      What’s more irrational and crazy than believing in God? Placing all your faith in a random bit of biological goo that sprung up from nothingness and is controlled by meaningless chemical reactions. 🤣
      There are people who speak of human beings as uselessly intelligent goo, but I don’t think any really believe it in their hearts, at least not until they are filled with despair. Is it not strange that intelligent goo doesn’t even want to exist?

  3. Yes, it’s true. Pride is taking oneself too seriously. Different people are prideful about different things, but it still comes down to the same principal — when we defend our egos at any cost, we’re taking ourselves too seriously.

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