HOW PRIDE DESTROYS

So why is pride a destructive force? Pride is more than feeling good when we accomplish something great.  Arrogant or conceited pride keeps us from loving others well.  Second, pride prevents us from seeing the sin of thinking more highly of ourselves than we ought.  Last, pride justifies self-centered behavior that erodes relationships.  Not only is pride destructive, but God hates pride and will oppose anyone who is prideful, which is explained at the end of this post.  So, if we don’t want God opposing us, then we need to seriously seek to get rid of pride.

You see, pride caused Lucifer, the most beautiful angel, to be thrown out of heaven and to the earth with a 1/3 of the angels who were also prideful.  Lucifer is renamed Satan or the devil, which means destroyer (see Isaiah 14:12-14; Revelations 9:11; and John 10:10a) and the fallen angels are now called demons.  So, pride is the one unseen battle for our minds that satan will tempt us with again and again because he knows pride is destructive.

Every person has pride problems because the sinful human nature is self-centered, wanting only to please itself.  Also, a self-centered person does not desire to seek God or to do His will.  On the other hand, Christianity is about being Christ-like and other-centered.

Read over the following definition of pride and humility and sincerely ask God to show you what your pride issues are. Be sensitive to the voice of the Holy Spirit.  When you discover your pride issue, ask God for forgiveness and to take the specific pride issue from you, and then to give you His humility and love for others.  When I asked God to take the spirit of pride out of my heart and mind, I felt a huge difference when it left.  Keep in mind, pride will always creep back in, so be watchful.

Pride is a high or inordinate opinion of one’s own dignity, importance, merit, or superiority, also known as exaggerated self-esteem or arrogance.  Prideful people think they are better than other people and will display contempt toward those who don’t value them or their abilities.  Prideful people will show disdain, contempt, or scorn for others who they think is beneath them or who disagrees with them.  They are judgemental and condemning of others and do not show mercy.

Pridefulness is exposed by what we say, especially when we speak more favorably of ourselves. For example, I would demean my husband by saying I was a harder worker than him; this is pride.  And, I pridefully believed I did things better, and others should recognize it and praise me.   Pride is evident when we try to control everything because we think we can do things better.  Also, getting angry when something does not go your way shows an impatient spirit, controlled by pride. Prideful people are also insecure and judgmental.  We display our pride in different ways, and it does not matter what form it takes, it still is a destructive sin.

A humble person exhibits acts of selflessness, kindness, patience, and gentleness.  They are not self-asserting or boastful but are more concerned about others.  Humble people are meek and not inclined to anger or resentment from insults and offenses.  Meekness shows incredible strength.  Humble people are merciful, polite, and respectful.  People like being around those who are humble because they feel loved and safe, and never judged.

After learning these truths, I now take my angry, impatient, and controlling thoughts captive and walk them back by consciously stopping the reactive thought and thinking a truthful thought.   The truth is that I can live in peace with everyone as far as it depends on me.  In the New International Version, Hebrews 12:14 states, “Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy, without holiness no one will see the Lord.”    I also put into my mind and heart the truths that humility is realizing that everything I have, including my abilities, is a gift from God (Deut. 8:17-18).  And I don’t think of myself more highly than others, but in humility, I will regard others as more important than myself (see Romans 12:3; Philippians 2:3).  The more we transform our thinking with truth found in the Word of God (see Romans 12:2) and are renewed by the Holy Spirit, the more like God we will be (see Ephesians 4:23), which is loving, patient, kind, peaceful, faithful, humble, full of joy, and self-controlled.  To learn how I became free to live a transformed and renewed life and how you can be free to live a new reality, visit my website: https://hopeforcompletehealing.com/.

To get a better understanding of what God thinks of pride, read the following Scriptures and write out your reflections to help you internalize these truths.


2 Chronicles 26:16 states, “But when he was strong, he grew proud, to his destruction. For he was unfaithful to the LORD his God ….”

     ??  Why would we be unfaithful to God when be become strong?

     ??  How do you think pride destroys us?

     ??  Think about a time when pride brought destruction in your life or someone else’s life.


2 Chronicles 32:25 states, “… for his heart was proud. Therefore wrath came upon him ….”

     ??  Why would a proud heart deserve the wrath of God?


Psalms 10:4 states, “In the pride of his face the wicked does not seek Him; all his thoughts are, ‘There is no God.’”

     ??  Why doesn’t a  proud person seek God? 

     ??  And why would a proud man say, “There is no God.?”


Psalms 31:23 states, “Love the LORD, all you his saints! The LORD preserves the faithful but abundantly repays the one who acts in pride.

     ??  What is the difference between the faithful and the proud person?

     ??  How do you think God preserves faithful people, and repays prideful people?


Psalms 59:12 states, “For the sin of their mouths, the words of their lips, let them be trapped in their pride.  For the cursing and lies that they utter,

     ??  How do the words of the proud trap them?

     ??  How is lying a sign of pride?


Proverbs 11:2 states, “When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.”

     ??  Why would the humble be wise, and the proud be disgraced?


Proverbs 16:18 states, “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.”

     ??  Why would pride bring destruction?  Give an example.

     ??  What would cause a haughty person to fall?


Proverbs 21:24 states, “’Scoffer’ is the name of the arrogant, haughty man who acts with arrogant pride.”

     ??  Why do the arrogant scoff (an expression of mocking contempt, scorn; jeer)?


Proverbs 29:23 states, “One’s pride will bring him low, but he who is lowly in spirit will obtain honor.”

     ??  How does pride bring a person low and how do the lowly obtain honor?


Ecclesiastes 7:8 states, “Better is the end of a thing than its beginning, and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.

     ??  Why is a patient spirit better than a proud spirit?

     ??  Why is a proud person not patient?


Obadiah 1:3a states, “The pride (arrogance) of your heart has deceived you, …”

     ??  Why does pride deceive us?


Romans 11:20, 23 states, “That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast through faith. So do not become proud (conceited), but fear. 23) And even they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God has the power to graft them in again.

     ??  How does standing fast in our faith and fearing God keep us from becoming prideful?


James 4:6 states, “But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, ‘God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.’” (Also see 1 Peter 5:5.)

     ??  Why does God oppose the proud?


Understand, God hates pride.  Proverbs 8:13 states, “The fear of the LORD is hatred of evil.  Pride and arrogance and the way of evil (evil behavior) and perverted speech I hate.”  Also, look-up the seven things God hates; Proverbs 6:16-19.   Not only does God hate pride and arrogance, but He also hates evil behavior, which is morally bad and depraved.  He also hates perverted speech, which is speech that deviates from what is good or true,  i.e., lying.  To be sure, a proud heart will not humbly submit to God or others and do what is right.

??  Would it be better to remain prideful or to humble ourselves and submit to God.  Why?

Read my other posts about Pride: Anger Issues Protected by Pride and Judgmental Strongholds and Freedom from Impatience and Strongholds of Injustice and Unfairness

Patience — Freedom from Strongholds of Injustice and Unfairness

You know you have a patience problem when you get upset every time you drive on the road.  Also, do you often get frustrated with people when they do not meet your expectations?  You probably already know if you are not a patient person.  Our goal should be to love others well from a pure heart, and the first attribute of love is patience (1 Cor. 13:4).  So, when we are patient, we are loving well.  I have heard people say they pray for more patience than any other attribute of love. Why? Why are we not patient?  Only God can tell us why, because only He knows the hurt in our hearts, and only He can heal it.

So what is patience?  The following definitions come from Webster’s dictionary.  Patience is bearing or enduring pain, trouble, inconvenience, etc. without complaint, losing self-control, making a disturbance, etc.  To be forbearing: tolerate (to put up with).  Keep oneself in check.  Refusing to be provoked or angered, as by an insult or frustration.  And, it is merciful: compassionate or kindly forbearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or person in one’s power.  It is persevering: steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement (does not quit).  Lastly, patience is being just: living with a moral principle that determines right conduct, and fair: treating all sides alike.

Every time I read these definitions of patience I can see where I am still falling short of not loving well. This post is my testimony of how I destroyed the mental strongholds of unfairness and injustice that control my thoughts and reactions.  So, if you have not read my post on strongholds, please read it first to understand what they are. STRONGHOLDS PART I—What are they and how do they affect us?

At a young age, I developed mental strongholds of injustice and unfairness that protected the authority seat of impatience.  Impatience ruled my behavior, which explained why I  over-reacted when I perceived something was unfair or unjust.  I had an unhealthy belief that trials or difficulties were unfair, wrongful actions against me and I needed to fight against them and the people involved.  But, in fact, trials and difficulties strengthen our ability to be patient, that is, practice makes perfect.  I also had the unhealthy belief, if I didn’t get what I needed, wanted, or what I expected, I would become frustrated and angry, which happend often.

How often do you hear a child say, “That’s not fair?”  Have you said it?  Because I thought my parents were unfair, I couldn’t trust them.  This stronghold combination prevents us from being submissive since we do not trust those in authority to be fair. So, when a person doesn’t think they can trust someone or submit to them, then they become rebellious.  Also, not being able to trust and submit our self-focused wills has adverse effects in all areas of our life (i.e., work, family, social, spiritual, etc.).

When I became free from this stronghold combination, I could then control my thoughts and emotions.  To be honest, it took some time to transform all my wrong thinking and unhealthy beliefs, that triggered automatic respone programming from my childhood.  To eliminate this stronghold combination, I asked God to show me the memories of offense of what I thought was unfair.  Past memories include childhood up to a moment ago.  Note, if a situation is fair, but you don’t think it is, this still creates an offense, just look at our political landscape.

Here is one example of many, I was responsible for doing all the dishes for a month for five members of my family, and each month my sisters and I would take turns.  I thought this was so unfair, and I had issues of doing the dishes for many years.  This memory caused many needless conflicts with my children and husband.  Eliminating the power of the memories of offense and unhealthy beliefs from our hearts and minds, frees us from the control of stronghold combinations.  The key is to overcoming is to stay mindful of the goal to love others well and not be self-centered, even toward other drivers.

The need to heal issues of frustration became clear after eliminating this stronghold combination.  So, I transformed the memories of my mother’s frustration by eliminating the negative energy and forgiving her.  I also had to forgive myself for being frustrated with my children and husband.  Next, I transformed the unhealthy belief that I have to control circumstances and what people do with the truth that I can only control my self.  Then I applied to my heart and mind the positive attributes found in the “Patience Issues” prayer focus on my website.  A truth statement I chose to believe was that I can be humble, gentle, and patient and show tolerance for others in love (Ephesians 4:2).

If you identify with what I have written, and you want to eliminate the power of offenses then go to my website: hopeforcompletehealing.com and learn how to be free to live a new reality.

ANXIETY: Protected by Worry and Fear Strongholds

Why do we become anxious?  I developed anxiety from not feeling safe and fearing for the safety of my family.  The worry and fear stronghold combination protects anxious thoughts, which negatively affects our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual lives.  For example, I had a fear of traveling to foreign countries, which caused me to worry about EVERYTHING.  I even had irrational fears of becoming fish food or terrorists will take the plane down.  Read how I overcame these anxieties, though sedatives did help. TRUST Leads to PEACE.

Strongholds are the mental fortresses that would look like castle walls if they had a physical form. They are built by bad memories to protect us from further emotional pain. The fact is, strongholds keep us from experiencing life and love. Mental strongholds are usually built to protect an unhealthy belief or beliefs generated by painful experiences that we have often forgotten about but still control us.  To learn more about unhealthy beliefs read this post.  Authority seats are like thrones within the fortified castle (our mind).  For example, a ruler builds a fortress to protect his or her interests and authority to rule. In this case, anxiety rules our behavior and choices and is protected by the many memories of things we fear and are worried about.

THE WORRY STRONGHOLD—Protects the following unhealthy beliefs: I can’t help but to worry because I am concerned. I trust God but worry keeps me on my knees. When I worry then I can feel I am in control somehow.  This stronghold protects the fear stronghold as an outer wall around the inner fear wall.

THE FEAR STRONGHOLD— Protects the following unhealthy beliefs: Something bad is going to happen. I must protect myself. I am not able to trust anyone. This stronghold protects the authority seat of anxiety within the inner walls of fear.

SEAT OF ANXIETY—Holds all the memories of not feeling safe, which triggers panic attacks when you are in a situation where you do not feel safe.

This stronghold combination is revealed during trials and troubles, or watching the news.  Trials and troubles should  increase our faith in God, strengthen our perseverance (endurance), and perfect our character (see Romans 5:3-5; James 1:2-4; 1 Peter 1:6-9).  Most often, we allow trials to continue to build the strongholds of fear and worry, which produces anxiety, hopelessness, despair, discouragement, fretting, and depression.   For instance, anxiety is a natural response when you are in the process of losing your job because someone is retaliating against you.  When this situation happened to me, I developed a host of digestive problems, which is common.

The worry stronghold would keep me from trusting God to work all things out for my good (Romans 8:28-29).  Instead, I would dwell on the problem and try to solve the problem myself if I could. This stronghold protected the fear stronghold which encouraged self-protective behavior and the need to control circumstances. For example, if I couldn’t control the circumstances, then I would become anxious, fearing something bad was going to happen that I wouldn’t be able to control. The anxious thoughts on the seat of authority in my heart caused me to feel hopeless, despaired, discouraged, unsafe, and unhappy.  I was even anxious about the decisions my adult children were making.

I felt God leading me to mentally or physically put myself in the various homes and places where I did not feel safe or accepted. I specifically and verbally loosed/put off the destructive memories created in those places along with all oppressive energy/spirit attachments (see website for explanation), unhealthy beliefs, and wrong thinking that God brought to my mind to be transformed. After that, I prayed through the “Joy, Trust, and Peace Issues,” to complete my transformation and healing. Then I imagined myself safe in the arms of my Heavenly Father who abundantly loves me. I also made God my refuge as I often quoted Psalms 91 and Isaiah 41:10-13 from memory.   When I became free from the worry and fear mental strongholds, I was healed of my digestive problems. I could also see how this stronghold combination affected all aspects of my life.  Read the following post to learn how I got through a nasty divorce and child-custody battle, which lead to severe anxiety attacks. Trust God to Keep His Promises

To remain in peace and not be fearful, our minds should be focused on the promises found in God’s Word and not on the things going on around us that we cannot control. Personally pray the verses in Philippians 4:6-7, which states, “do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7) And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” and Romans 8:28 which states, “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose.”  Read, 15 Promises We Can Trust God to Keep

If you see this stronghold combination in your life, then go through the pages of my website to learn the scientific and spiritual concepts for transforming the many negative issues of not feeling safe in your heart.  1–Healing Begins by Transforming Painful Memories

The above statements are passages from my book called Unseen Battles for Your Mind, which is in the editing stage, and therefore, is not to be recopied without my permission.

 

Freedom from Insecurity, which is Protected by Betrayal and Control Strongholds

We all have some measure of insecurity, whether we realize it or not, because we live with and work with sinful, hurting people who hurt others, and we are not exempt. Insecurities are revealed by the negative reactions when they are triggered by what someone says, does, or does not do. For example, if someone found fault with me or with what I did, I would have an anxiety attack, and feel they didn’t like me, and that I will never be good enough. If someone did not give me the praise for doing something, then I would feel rejected and unappreciated, etc. Another example is when I would suggest doing something or going somewhere, and I would be ignored or discounted, then I would get angry and feel sorry for myself because I didn’t feel valued so I withdrew or acted out of anger to get control. Insecurities are also revealed by the negative tapes that are automatically played out when we feel out of control or discounted. The negative tapes could be, “I’ll never be accepted because I am different,” “I’ll never be able to accomplish anything because people don’t support me,” “What is wrong with me?” etc. Have you ever heard yourself say, “I can’t do this because…,” “This is too hard,” I’m not good enough,” “People can’t be trusted,” “I need to do this myself,” etc.

The strongholds of injustice and unfairness contribute to issues of betrayal and wanting to be in control. This is not uncommon with people who have been abused or grew up in dysfunctional families. I struggled with the control stronghold for several years, even though I would continually loose and put it off. I wanted to control what people did and what they thought of me, as well as control circumstances in order to prevent being hurt, disappointed, or even annoyed. I asked God why I kept dealing with this control issue, and He showed me that there was an outer mental stronghold of betrayal that protected my need to be controlling. The betrayal stronghold was built and kept in place by negative memories of betrayal by those who should have protected and loved me. These painful memories of betrayal developed insecurities, which are basically unhealthy beliefs and lies that perpetuates anxiety about what others do, not do, or think and say. For instance, I trusted that my parents, my spouse, and friends would love me and not hurt me, or lie to me, but they did. As a result, I disassociated and disconnected because I felt that I was not able to trust them. Note, some people should not be trusted and that is okay. Dictionary.com defines betray as 2) to be unfaithful in guarding, maintaining, or fulfilling; be disloyal to.

I believe there is no greater injustice than the betrayal of one’s sexuality because it wounds the soul the deepest. I also believe that the betrayal of sexuality causes the most damage to our self-esteem and self-worth because God created sexuality to be a beautiful act of vulnerability between two married people who love each other. And because our sexuality is an intimate part of us, any childhood sexual interference such as pornography, exposure to sexual acts (even in a movie), fondling, uncomfortable affection, making a child take on the role of a spouse, adult humor, and so on,  damages the very core of a child or teen’s being. This causes a person to feel confusion, shame, and humiliation, which then causes sexual violation secrets to be carefully guarded and deeply buried in the soul. These buried secrets continue to have a profound effect on how a person see’s themselves and others. I have known people who had great difficulty having a healthy marriage because of these secrets. A lot of books have been written about this topic and are a good resource if you have these buried secrets. Talking with a counselor is also very helpful but I want to caution you to be careful what counselor you choose to share your sexual violation secrets with. Not every counselor or pastor understands the damage of sexual betrayal and they may cause more confusion and betrayal.

Total healing and transformation happen only when we come to Jesus with our damaged sexuality and allow Him to restore our purity and respect. This is a supernatural act of healing that is received by faith. In fact, all painful memories of betrayal of all kinds can be healed, which in turn, heal insecurities and the need to be controlling.  This can be done by going through the prayer format to destroy strongholds found on my website: hopeforcompletehealing.com

The above statements are passages from my book called “Unseen Battles for Your Mind,” which is in the editing stage, and therefore, is not to be recopied without my permission.