My problem with pride

Saturday, June 24, 2006

I have not been worship leading for 3 months. This is a record. I have not been so out of action for so long. So I offered my uncle to fill in for him, which he gladly accepted. He has this mindset that he is always too old to lead in worship, which I, with much prayer, have convinced him otherwise and he has been leading in worship for several months now.

We had our practice today and I felt it was a good practice. Firstly, we had good fun, we enjoyed ourselves. Secondly, the songs were good in their own rights and we worshipped in our own ways, even though it is practice time. And thirdly, I felt I did better this time, after several vocal lessons which I started in March.

Now, this is where the problem is. I am ashamed, very ashamed, to admit this but since the very beginning, when I started worship leading about 20 years ago (yes, it was that long!) I always thought I sang well. I tried to stop thinking that and truth be told , many a times I got reminded of myself that I am not as good as I thought I was.

And I still think that. Compared to the others in church and compared to the other amazing voices I have heard, I am nothing in comparison. I know that for a fact. But yet at times when I sing, I have this fight within myself to stop thinking how good I sound. I felt really embarrassed about it but felt I had to post it anyway as I am accountable to my action, my words and my thoughts.

Pride is one of the most basic of deadly sin. (I think greed is the other one. And from these 2, the other sins emerge.)

Pro 16:18 Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.

Pro 29:23 One's pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.

Isa 2:11 The haughty looks of man shall be brought low, and the lofty pride of men shall be humbled, and the LORD alone will be exalted in that day.

Oba 1:3 The pride of your heart has deceived you, you who live in the clefts of the rock, in your lofty dwelling, who say in your heart, "Who will bring me down to the ground?"

Mar 7:21-23 For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person."

1Jo 2:16 For all that is in the world--the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions--is not from the Father but is from the world.

I desire to be humble before God, knowing that I am nothing before him. O Lord have mercy on me, a sinner.

Picture by Kat Callard

Note to my fellow blogger friends: do check my Musings blog, an update to the piano post.

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11 comment(s)

  1. Hi Maeghan! I am here from Milly's blog--I have a daughter with a name very near yours--so I decided to check your blog out--and find out you are a Christian in Malaysia! I have another daughter currently doing mission work in KL! What a small world.

    I struggle with pride soooo much--I hate that I do--but I do! I pray that as you lead worship on Sunday--you will be able to do it humbly--that you will be a blessing and be blessed!

  2. I have this fight within myself to stop thinking how good I sound.


    I don't know. There could be pride, but I don't think being glad that you have skill in your praise is a bad thing.

    Song 1:5
    5 Dark am I, yet lovely,

    She is humble, without lying about herself. She is lovely only for her King, but she is glad to be lovely for Him. She surely doesn't imagine herself to be less than lovely.

    "Dark am I, yet lovely" seems like a good balance.

  3. Hi jettybetty,
    Nice to have you visiting :)
    Maeghan/Megan/Meghan is a lovely name - it is my pseudonym really. My real name is Pearlie. Maeghan of Celtic origin and it carries the meaning of "pearl".

    Yeah ... small world indeed. Which mission organisation is she involved in, if you don't mind me asking? I used to work for World Vision.

    Thanks for your prayers. I had as best that I could, kept my self in check - the only way possible is to fully direct my worship to God and God alone. Not easy but essential.

  4. Codepoke,
    I don't think being glad that you have skill in your praise is a bad thing.

    I have no problem with that but I feel it is more than that.

    Good reference to Songs of Songs- you noted that she is lovely only for her King. Am I as humble? I almost have to always remind myself that I am doing what I am doing for God and not for anyone else.

  5. ...but I feel it is more than that.

    We can be sure that the Spirit only reveals that which He intends to heal! Praise the Lord, and may He purify us all that we may appear before Him without spot or wrinkle.

  6. Codepoke, I have been thinking a lot about what you said and thought maybe I am being too hard on myself, which is a feedback I did received from some friends some time ago. Thanks for encouragement and the reminder that I need to balanced. Not to beat myself so hard and not to feel so good to border on idolatry.

    Thanks brother!

  7. I run sound for my church. I do roll my eyes at some of the singers and the egos, however as someone who was and loves to be involved in the theater you have to feel that what you’re doing is good otherwise you’d, and I’ve seen it, pull the mic from your face and not be heard. You allow for your God given talents to lift us up, to give to God, I wasn’t blessed with the singing one. The fact that you are thinking about your pride shows that you have nothing to worry about. I know that I can act because I was told I could, something in me takes over and it seems as if it’s the only thing going on, me and the stage. Just as it’s you and the worship. Stop sweating it your thoughts are ok. You need a bit of ego so that you aren't afraid. God gave us that.

  8. Maeghan,

    I have this fight within myself to stop thinking how good I sound.

    I don't know If I can agree with this. I am reminded of the movie Chariot of Fire. When Eric Liddel was talking to his sister about being an olympic runner rather than a heading for missionary work in China.

    "I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure."

    It brings chills to me, because he articulated something few Christians see. Using God given talents to His glory brings God pleasure.

    Pride is a problem, and I know I struggle with it, but recognizing that you are good at something isn't pride: thinking less of others because they are not is.

    God Bless

  9. Milly,
    Thanks so much for your thoughts. I appreciate it as I believe you are right. We do need to give our best to God.

    I run sound for my church.
    Wow... that's great. How long have you been doing it?

  10. Doug,
    recognizing that you are good at something isn't pride: thinking less of others because they are not is.

    That is so well put. Exactly what I am so afraid of because I do catch myself doing that sometimes and I hate myself for it.

  11. I’ve been at it for a while now. I’m not actually sure, about two years. You most likely do sound better than others. We have one lady who is classically trained she can hit notes that others can’t. Each person requires different nurturing from the board. You must have a bit of ego to not be afraid. And to be honest you probably are a bit better than others. We have a few that, well we love them and they are volunteers. Let’s just say some are pulled down more than others.

    The fact that you realize you might be letting the old ego run amuck tells me that you aren’t.