4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant
5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. - 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
Love is not boast, it is not arrogant or rude. When these three characteristics are considered together, we are describing a prideful person. God calls us to a life of humility, one where we are consistently putting others before ourselves. It’s important to truly analyze each of these characteristics and how they manifest themselves in our lives. To deny these three traits exist in our hearts is to be prideful - they exist in all of us. It is true they can all be subtle, and without the magnifying glass of scripture, we may miss them. Our job to become keenly aware of what they look like in our own hearts so that we can surrender our pride in confession and repentance.
Arrogance is an inflated view of self. This view is stored deep within our hearts and defines our way of thinking. We are exhorted multiple times in scripture not to think highly of ourselves. When we are thinking to highly of ourselves, we are easily offended or hurt by the actions of others primarily because we have a plan on our minds for how they should treat us. Our needs rank above others, and when another person violates our perceived need, then we walk away feeling unvalued. We defend our pride by pointing to the actions of others and holding them up as wrong. It can be so challenging to dig down and truly find the pride in our hearts, especially when it’s been buried for years under “justified” hurt, but if you truly analyze the feelings underneath the pain, you’ll find a focus on yourself and a violation of what you perceive as right.
The opposite of arrogance is humility, which is not a deflated view of self as much as it is an inflated view of others. It’s putting others needs before your own. It’s not taking offense at what others say or do, but rather working hard to take their perspective and understand their point of view.
Some believe they do not struggle with arrogance because they struggle with depression - they have such a low view of self that they don’t even value their life. Sadly, a low view of self is not humility, it is an extreme case of arrogance because the of the intensified view of self. They are exceptionally focused on themselves. To battle low self worth and depressive thoughts, shift your thinking to others instead of yourself. Begin serving others to take the focus off of you, and you will find those depressive thoughts begin to flee.
Boasting is a focus on self accomplishments and, at its root, seeks praise from others for recognition of those accomplishments. Boasting fails to acknowledge where our accomplishments, possessions, or stature. At the root of any boasting is the fear of man sin. Any time we boast, we are seeking the approval of man and not the approval of God. We all get caught in this trap because the praise of man is tangible and comforting. We love to hear from others how awesome we are. Boasting mixed with arrogance is especially dangerous when relaying conflict. It is a focus on what the other person did wrong, with no recognition of your contribution to the conflict.
Being rude is connected to pride because it is a lack of respect. We are called to respect, especially those in authority over us. Our husbands, our bosses, our church leadership, our parents. Our words should always be building others up, not tearing them down. We act rudely when we fail to speak respectfully to these people in our lives, or when we fail to speak to others about them with a respect.
Take the time to look for where your heart hides arrogance, boasting, or rudeness. God will reveal those places to you if you seek Him. Surrender those parts of your heart in confession and repentance - to God and to the people you offend - and watch Him pour blessings out into your life.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
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