Pride (Part II): Thirty-One Manifestations of Pride
by Todd Johansson
[Christian Boot Camp (CBC) is a series of teachings on topics (which CBC refers to as Belief Deceptions) that cripple people and churches, such as pride, offense, anger, fear, self-righteousness, denial, blame-shifting, enabling and victim mentality, just to name a few. These teachings—complete with accompanying slides, handouts, and other collaterals—can help your church get on the road to total health. The following article is a very short excerpt of the CBC teaching on the subject of Pride. Contact Innovative Church & Worship Consulting for more details.]
(Click here for Part One of PRIDE: Thinking Too Much of Self.) It’s easy to see PRIDE in others. But we don’t always see it in ourselves. Here is a list of Thirty-One PRIDE manifestations that can easily clear away the smoke of any self-righteousness.
1. Complaining About God Not Moving. A proud person in a difficult situation thinks, "God isn't doing anything for me after all I have done for Him." If you don't want to see God move in your life, be sure to have this attitude (see Numbers 14:1-4,9-11; Romans 9:20).
2. A Lack of Gratitude. Proud people usually think they deserve what is good. The result is this: they see no reason to be thankful for what they have already received. As a matter of fact, they may even complain because they think they deserve better. They tend to be critical, complaining and discontent. The proud person is not in regular practice of being thankful toward God or others.
3. Anger. A proud person is often an angry person. One's anger can include lashing out, withdrawing, pouting, or frustration. A person most often becomes angry because his or her "rights" or expectations are not being met. These are signs of outbursts of anger. Read here in Galatians 5 what happens to people who regularly practice outbursts of anger.
4. Seeing Yourself as Better than Others. A proud person is usually on top looking down on others. They’re easily disgusted and have little tolerance for differences.
5. Having an Inflated View of Your Importance, Gifts and Abilities. Many proud people have a very strong perception of themselves. They need a loving dose of reality.
6. Being Focused on the Lack of Your Gifts and Abilities. Some proud people may not come across proud at all, because they are always down on themselves. This is still evidence of PRIDE because one is focused on self and wants self to be elevated. Having a "woe is me" attitude is self-pity, which is PRIDE.
7. Perfectionism. People who strive for everything to be perfect often do so for recognition. They may do it so that they can feel good about themselves. Whatever the reason, this behavior is very self-serving and proud. The basic problem is making things that are less important, more important.
8. Talking Too Much. Proud people who talk too much often do it because they think that what they say is more important than what anyone else has to say. When there are many words, sin is generally unavoidable.
9. Talking too much about Yourself. A person who is proud may center on themselves in conversation. Sharing personal accomplishments and good personal qualities with others can be bragging or boasting.
10. Seeking Control. Some proud people find it extremely difficult to work under someone else or to submit to an authority. They have to be their own boss. They might say, "I don't need anyone," or "I don't need accountability for my faith and doctrine." They are often rigid, stubborn, headstrong, and intimidating. They may also say, "It's my way or no way" (1 Corinthians 1:10-13; Ephesians 5:21).
11. Being Consumed with What Others Think. Some proud people are too concerned about the opinion of others. Many of their decisions are based on what others might think. Some are in a continual pursuit of gaining the approval and esteem of others. Focusing on what others think of you or trying to impress others is being a man-pleaser rather than a God-pleaser.
12. Being Devastated or Angered by Criticism. Proud people usually struggle a great deal with criticism. Such people cannot bear that they are not perfect or have weaknesses, because they cannot accept who they really are.
13. Being Unteachable. Many proud people know it all. They're superior. They can't seem to learn anything from someone else. They respect no one.
14. Being Sarcastic, Hurtful, or Degrading. Proud people can be very unkind people. Those who belittle other people usually want to raise themselves up above others. Very often this can be quite cleverly done through jesting. They may excuse themselves by saying, "That's just the way I am. That's my personality".
15. A Lack of Serving. Proud people may not serve because they are not thinking of others, or because they want to be coaxed to serve and don't want to continue if there is no praise. Needing recognition is a sure sign of the wrong motive in serving.
16. A Lack of Compassion. A person who is proud is rarely concerned for others and their concerns. They cannot see beyond their own desires.
17. Being Defensive or Blame-Shifting. You would often hear a proud person say, "Are you saying it’s my fault?" or "Well, what about you?"
18. A Lack of Admitting when You are Wrong. A proud person would make a great many excuses such as, "I was tired," or "I was having a bad day", versus taking responsibility for being wrong. If you can’t admit when you’re wrong, you’re operating in PRIDE.
19. A Lack of Asking Forgiveness. Proud people rarely admit their sins or ask for forgiveness of others. They either cannot see their sin because they are blinded by their PRIDE, or they just can't seem to humble themselves before someone else and ask for forgiveness.
20. A Lack of Selfless Prayer. Most proud people pray very little, if at all. Proud people who do pray usually center their prayers on themselves and their desires, rather than God’s desires for them, and the needs of others.
21. Resisting Authority or Being Disrespectful. A proud person may detest being told what to do. We might say he or she has a submission problem. What they actually have, however, is a PRIDE problem. It is simply displaying itself in a lack of submission.
22. Voicing Preferences and Opinions when not Asked. A proud person might not be able to keep their preferences or opinions to their self. They’ll offer it when it is not asked for. These preferences are usually voiced without consideration for others.
23. Minimizing Your Own Sin and Shortcomings. A proud person typically believes that their own sin is no big deal. They think they have little sin and others have a great deal of it.
24. Maximizing Other's Sin and Shortcomings. To the proud person, other people are the problem. They may magnify or bring attention to the sin of others by gossiping about the other's sin.
25. Being Impatient or Irritable with Others. A proud person might be angry with other people because they are concerned that their own schedule or plans are being ruined. They are often inflexible on preference issues.
26. Being Jealous or Envious. Often when they do not enjoy the same benefits, proud people have a hard time being glad for other's successes or blessings.
27. Using Others. The proud person usually views others in terms of what those people can do for them and their interests. Their focus is not on ministering to others. Everything is for them and about them.
28. Being Deceitful by Covering Up Sins, Faults and Mistakes. Some proud people will do just about anything in order for others not to find out negative things about them.
29. Using Attention-Getting Tactics. A proud person may try to draw attention to themselves through dress, bizarre behavior, being rebellious, always talking about their problems (victim-mindedness), etc.
30. Not having Close Relationships. Proud people often have no use for close relationships, thinking that the trouble outweighs the benefits. They may see themselves as so self-sufficient that they do not need other people.
31. Sexual Sin. A proud person may or may not necessarily have sex outside of marriage, but lusting after others (including pornography) is without question, sin. For a christian to have sexual sin, it means they make a conscious choice to indulge in sexual sin, and rationalize, “I can repent to God for it later.”
(Don’t forget catch Part III of Pride.)
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