James 4:6 | But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.”
I have been studying gratitude recently and find myself stumbling across pride. At first, I didn’t see the clear connection; I do now. Now I see that pride slays thanksgiving. “A proud man is seldom a grateful man, for a he never thinks that he gets what he deserves.” What a miserable way to live. Never feeling appreciated, never feeling acknowledge, never feeling rewarded the way we think we “deserve” to be.
Well, what do we really think we deserve? Materials possessions? Countless comforts? A life free from hardship, pain, suffering? Do we think we deserve everything that we want? That’s what this culture teaches us. Our poor children may grow up to be even more entitled than we were. Entitlement robs our joy; entitlement will job our kids of joy.
As a mom, this makes it even more important to learn now how to give up that pride – the joy thief – and replace it with a grateful heart. If I can do that my children will understand what gratitude and humility are, rather than receiving an model of pride. I want to give them an understanding that all good things in my life, in their lives, are truly gifts to be thankful for, not rewards that we somehow earned. With that gift of gratitude, comes the gift of joy.
“No one who ever said to God they will be done and mean it with his heart, ever failed to find joy – not just in heaven, or down the road in the future of this world, but in this world at that very moment.” (Peter Kreeft)
When we give up the pride of receiving our own will, and live in gratitude that we live out his will, joy will always follow. (Psalms 143:10)