Made with Strength {Marriage}: Stubborn Pride

Monday, 8 February 2016

Photo: Photography by Anjuli

I love to win; I am competitive to my core.

It's especially apparent in disagreements. It's why I signed up + paid for the LSAT; it's why I was convinced I belonged in a courtroom. I can argue my case, and I can argue it well. 

Ashamedly, it's to the point where I will go to whatever lengths needed to prove I'm right. It makes no difference if it's a card game with family+ friends, or a disagreement of opinions with my husband; my blood boils and I HAVE to prove why I'm right. 

Tonight as superman and I were reading our book, Me + You Forever by Francis + Lysa Chan, I was struck by their reliability. They're a powerhouse couple for the Lord, but they shared how similar they are to ME; how much we actually have in common and how imperfect they are. Both of them love to win too; and they've not gone without fights of their own. As I read their vulnerability to welcome others into their marriage, my heart gave way to hope. Fighting does not mean that I'm counted out from being used by God as a wife, it simply means I need to learn HOW to fight to the glory of God. 

A verse they bring to attention for those moments when flesh cries for a victory over humility is James 4:6 "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble". 

Mic drop....

But SERIOUSLY! If that doesn't humble me, what else will?! 

Gods word is SO clear to us sisters! As wives, as women of Faith, as sisters, as daughters, as friends... 

God OPPOSES our pride. 
He opposes, meaning his hand is AGAINST us. After reading Genesis + Exodus in my quiet time the past few weeks, one thing is very clear... when God's hand is against me, I can't win.  I NEED Him FOR me! 

God gives GRACE to the humble. 

Mmmm... That's what I need; more of his grace. I need it in moments when I want to win; I need it in the card games, in the dominos, in basketball, in arguments... I need that grace to be over, in and working through me. I need it to be my lifeline; ESPECIALLY as a wife. 

My calling as a wife is not to stomp my food in protest demanding calling is to humble myself; to glorify God OVER my selfish need for victory. I'm called to SUBMIT to my husbands leadership; to become his compliment; to make him feel 10 feet tall with my words not belittled with nagging; to pray for God to lead and change his heart; not me, not pushing my prideful opinion and FORCING my feelings/thoughts/opinions etc. 

It is hard. But it is our calling.

Remember, when Christ called us forward to follow him, he warned us it would take sacrifice, it would take humility, it would take service, and it would take being the least of these.

I want to apply this reading... and sometimes I don't know HOW to handle my pride or my selfishness in the heat of the moment, but I KNOW I can stand on the truth of God's Word. I FULLY believe that memorizing scripture will help tame my tongue, slow my speech, and develop a heart of love + grace over pride + selfishness. 

Here are several verses I'm working on memorizing as short prayers:

God, give me more grace. I know you oppose the proud, and I stand on the truth that you give grace to the humble. Help me humble myself and lay my pride aside. Amen (James 4:6)

God stop me when I try to do something out of rivalry or conceit. Help me count others more significant than myself in humility. Amen (Philippians 2:3)

God help me live in harmony with others, with my husband, with my family, friends + strangers. Bring this verse to mind when I am being haughty; but rather associate myself with those who initially I would consider "lowly"... break down those barriers I make in my mind categorizing myself as better than others. Keep me from being wise in my own eyes. Amen (Romans 12:16)

God, you define love. Your words says patience and kindness are acts of love. If I'm being impatient or unkind toward my husband or others, please convict my heart. Turn me toward repentance and keep me from pride; let me ask for forgiveness immediately. Help me act kindly and act with patience even when things don't go my way. Your word also says love is not envious or boastful or arrogant. Sometimes it's hard for me to see these threads in my words or actions. Show me where I wander from loving THIS way. Amen (1 Corinthians 13:4)

Father clothe me, my words, my actions, my life with humility. Let others see + experience my humility. Give me your grace. Amen (1 Peter 5:5)

Father, I don't want to be conformed to this world any longer. I want to be TRANSFORMED; in mind, in heart, in spirit by the renewal of your word. Let me experience your will, oh God, to see and taste what is good, acceptable, and perfect. Amen (Romans 12:2)

How will you release your pride this week and seek to lift others up this week showing love through your patience and kindness??

Live Sown with Strength,

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