“Pride comes before a fall.” I think we’ve all heard this famous saying many times over. But where does it come from? It comes out of Proverbs 16:18, “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.” Just like most sayings, no one ever quotes it exactly right.
Pride is one of those complicated concepts. We should be proud of our accomplishments but not so proud that we are boasting about it to everyone we meet. We should be proud of our family but not so proud that we don’t let others get a word in edgewise in our conversations. We should be proud of the life we are living but not so proud that we make others feel less important than us. Pride can be good when used or displayed sparingly but watch out that you keep it under control, or it could lead to destruction.
How does this relate to love? Well, love is not proud, in a puffed up “I’m superior to all my fellow humans,” kind of way. Love is the opposite of proud, it is humble. If you live with pride ruling your relationships, there will be destruction of some kind. “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10. The enemy of our souls and our relationships has three main goals: to steal, kill, and destroy. One of his tools in destruction is pride and many of us give into it more than we realize or care to admit.
The wicked in his pride persecutes the poor; let them be caught in the plots which they have devised. For the wicked boasts of his heart’s desire; He blesses the greedy and renounces the Lord. The wicked in his proud countenance does not seek God; God is in none of his thoughts.Psalm 10:2-4 (NKJV)
Deliver me from my enemies, O my God; Defend me from those who rise up against me. … For the sin of their mouth and the words on their lips, let them even be taken in their pride, and for the cursing and lying which they speak.Psalm 59:1, 12 (NKJV)
The fear of the Lord is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way and the perverse mouth I hateProverbs 8:13 (NKJV)
These are a few biblical examples of how pride is displayed. Also remember, “Good people bring good things out of the good stored up in their heart, but evil people bring evil things out of the evil stored up in their heart. For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.” Luke 6:45 NIV. If there is pride in your heart pride will come out of your mouth and into your relationships and if there is humility and love in your heart that will come out of your mouth and into your relationships. Let’s choose love and humility to steer us toward thriving relationships.