How to Convert Pridefulness to Gentleness and Humility

You might think you have the right to be prideful because of your position in life, accomplishments, or status in the community. None of those situations are bad, nor does it mean you have arrogant, self-centered pride. Being proud of your accomplishments is different than thinking you’re better than someone else. I have to admit that I struggle with pride because I slip into thinking more highly of myself than I ought to. Most pride issues come from unhealthy beliefs that need to be uncovered and transformed by truth.

How often have you heard people make excuses for their bad behavior and accept it as part of who they are? So why is self-centered pridefulness a bad thing? The Spirit of pride keeps you from acknowledging your sin, apologizing, and repenting. I have written several posts on this subject, to learn more please read the posts listed below:


#1 Destroyer of All Relationships and the Solution

Anger Issues Protected by Pride and Judgmental Strongholds

My website is about changing unhealthy beliefs to experience a new reality. What we think and say comes from what we believe, and what we believe directs our behavior. Our choices determine how healthy our relationships will be. In this series of posts, I will expose the unhealthy beliefs that control our lives and how to transform them with the truth to experience a new reality. So why should we deal with pridefulness, and how does it block a gentle and meek attitude?

Where Does the Prideful Belief Come From?

The primary source of sinful pride is the devil. Self-centered, unhealthy beliefs are based on wrong assumptions and perceptions put into our minds by the demonic spirits all around us. Remember, we are spirit beings in a physical body living in a physical world controlled by the spirit world. You can read more about that in my post called: Four Realities of the Spirit World, also see the link below by Dr. David Jeremiah. If you are not submitted to God and are not resisting the devil, he will put the thoughts into your mind that you deserve better treatment than that, and so on.

Satan (angel named Lucifer, meaning “morning star”) sinned because of his pride by wanting to set his throne above God’s throne and was thrown down to earth (Isaiah 14:13-15 and Rev. 12:7-9). He causes us to sin through the same prideful attitude. Pride is thinking more highly of yourself than you ought to think (Romans 12:3), which also encourages us to think with sober (sound) judgment, that is, with a humble attitude. You know you have a spirit of pride when you are self-centered and insist on getting what you want at the expense of others. And, you know you are prideful when you become offended and get a bad attitude toward someone for what they said/did not say or did/not did something you felt was unfair.

How do you know if you are humble?

God’s word defines a humble person as follows:

1. Someone who fears God (Prov. 15:33; 22:4).

2. A person who bears with others and is kind, patient, and forgiving (Eph 4:2 & 32).

3. When we count others as more important than ourselves (Phil. 2:3).

4. If you have wisdom that is pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere (James 3:17; Proverbs 11:2).

5. Someone who has acknowledged they are a sinner and repents (Psalm 149:4).

6. A person with a contrite (repentant) heart who trembles at God’s Words (Isaiah 66:2).

7. A humble person is not judgmental but gives grace (Eph 4:29).

What Is the Truth That Transforms this Unhealthy Belief?

The truth is that “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble (1Pet 5:5 and James 4:6).” 1Peter 5:6-7 states, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.” Give God all the worries that cause you to be anxious, and trust God to take care of all your concerns. When you worry, you exalt yourself above God because you do not trust Him to take care of your affairs. When you humbly give God all your concerns, He promises to exalt you at the proper time.

James 4:7 states, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” When we submit to God, we are humbling ourselves and acknowledging our sin and need for His power and strength. But we are also to resist the devil and his temptations toward selfish ambition and pride. James 3:14-16 states, “But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to [deny] the truth. 15This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile [evil] practice.” First, humbly ask God to show you if this verse applies to your life. Secondly, if you see selfishness, acknowledge that you have an unhealthy pride that leads to selfish ambition and ask for God’s forgiveness. Thirdly, ask God to remove it and to give you a humble spirit.

How To Change Unhealthy Beliefs

1. Before you can transform unhealthy beliefs, listen to what you are saying and pay attention to your thoughts because they come from unhealthy beliefs.

2. Submit the wrong thinking to God and ask Him to show you His transforming truth.

3. Ask God to show you if there is a painful memory contributing to your pridefulness. Satan takes every opportunity to inject pride into our minds.

4. Pray and put off the unhealthy belief controlling your thoughts and put on the truth God shows you from His Word.

I first loosed the wrong thinking that God showed me and replaced it with scripture truths similar to the following:

Humility realizes that everything I have, including my abilities, is a gift from God. Deut. 8:17-18

I do not think of myself more highly than others, but in humility, I will regard others as more important than myself. Rom. 12:3; Phil. 2:3

God lifts up the humble in due time, so I will cast all my anxiety on Him because He cares for me. 1 Pet. 5:6-7; James 4:10

I am humbled when I see my need for God and trust He will guide me in what is right for all His ways are loving and faithful.  Ps. 25:9-10

When I am humble, then I will be honored. Prov.15:33b


1–Healing Begins by Transforming Painful Memories


All verses are from the English Standard Bible unless otherwise indicated. If you find my posts and website helpful, please share the links with your friends and family, The information is copyright protected. No part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom and this website. 

Contact me at, and ask for a PDF of Eight Life-Changing Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, salvation for non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name so I know you are a person making the request.

Unanswered Prayers? Are You Turning God Off?

Have you ever wanted something you thought you had to have and you wanted it right away? We are the microwave society that wants instant results. When I was a teenager, I wanted a guitar so I could be cool like my friend Kelly.  I asked my Mom to give me one for Christmas, but I got a six-hole flute instead, go figure. I was so disappointed.  I now understand that my divorced mother was poor, and she could not afford to buy me a guitar. But, instead of telling me that, she said if I could playing the flute she would get me a guitar the next Christmas. Well, I practiced a lot of songs and gave her an audition, but still no guitar. Have you been disappointed when you didn’t get something you wanted? Many times, God does not give us the things we want right away.

James 4:3 states, “You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions.” Passion is a strong desire for what gives you pleasure. A passion is not always because of selfish pride. If the passion is for self-centered reasons, then it could be motivated by pride.  If the passion is zeal to do good and be God-centered or other-centered, then your motive is good. So, what is your motivation for asking God to give you what you desire? My motivation to play the guitar was from self-centered pride.  I bought a guitar many years later, and I had no musical ability to play it. God knew that, but I didn’t.

Reason 7: Pride Turns God Off.

Humble prayers are the prayers God answers. James 4:6b states, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” And, 1John 3:21-23 states, “Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; 22) and whatever we ask we receive from him, because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him. 23) And this is his commandment, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us.”

The sin of pride blocks your prayers because pride keeps you from obeying God and loving others. To know if you have a self-centered pride issue, ask God to search your heart and examine your mind.  Jeremiah 17:9-10 explains, “The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure.  Who can understand it? 10) I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve.” And, Psalm 139:23 states, “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts!” Also, Obadiah 1:3a states, “The pride (arrogance) of your heart has deceived you, …”

Billy Graham believes, our motive for petitioning God must be humble. Suppose your prayer is self-centered and only concerned for the gratification of your own pleasures and passions. In that case, God cannot, in faithfulness, grant your requests.1 Another way our pride turns God off is how our pride wants immediate results and does not want to wait, but sometimes we have to wait for God’s perfect timing.


Reason eight: Sometimes we have to wait?

God wants us to grow in our faith and character more than give us our desires.  Trials of temptations and adversity are necessary, so we can become stronger in our faith and character. Lamentations 3:25–26  states, “The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait on the Lord quietly.” Dr. Lloyd-Jones believes that God sometimes delays His answer to deal with selfishness or things in our lives that should not be there.2

Isaac Breese believes that too often we look to prayer to solve all of our problems instead of focusing on meditation. We always feel the need to voice our concerns to God constantly telling him what we need forgetting that he already knows.3


God hears the prayers of those who are humble and accepts a “no” or “wait” answer. A humble person waits patiently for His response. Often, we ask God for things that may not be good for us at the time or is His will for us. This post is the last in the series of why prayers go unanswered. To know all the reasons why God may not answer you prayers, read my previous posts:

Unanswered Prayer? Why?

Unanswered Prayer? Are You Connected?

Unanswered Prayer? Are You Presentable?

Unanswered Prayer? Doubt or Faith.

Unanswered Prayer? Asking For God’s Will or Your Will?




2. Page 16, Lloyd-Jones D. M., (1987), Faith: tried & triumphant.  Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, MI

3. “It’s Not That God Didn’t Answer Your Prayers, It’s That You Didn’t Get The Response You Wanted”



How I became free from pride:  The Core Negative Heart Issue

Anger Issues Protected by Pride and Judgmental Strongholds

Freedom from Impatience and Strongholds of Injustice and Unfairness



All verses are from the English Standard Bible. If you find my posts and website helpful, then please share the links with your friends and family, The information is copyright protected and no part of the posts or my book may be reproduced without proper citation to Joyce Hanscom. 

Contact me at, and ask for a PDF of Eight Prayers from the Bible. The prayers are for the Spirit of wisdom, renewal, spiritual strength, knowledge of His will, virtues of God, non-believers, 23rd Psalm, and victory. Please leave your name so I know you are a real person making the request.

P.S.: Experiencing a lasting change in your life depends on having a right relationship with God the Father through believing in His Son Jesus Christ and obeying His command to love (1 John 3).