Pride or feelings of unworthiness have similar effects on our relationship with God.
While Pride , in its negative manifestation can be defined as arrogance , haughtiness and egotism ; it can also be defined in a positive sense as self-respect,self-esteem and pleasure or satisfaction gained from an achievement or self -image.
The opposite of negative pride is humility, which simply ,means meekness and submission.
God resists the proud and exalts the humble soul.
Lacking self-worth is not the same as humility.
In fact, feeling unworthy before God and seeing others as such, is as offensive as harbouring pride in our hearts.
Usually, with success, fame and affluence comes pride.
Pride in the hearts of men and women towards the less privileged humanity and towards God; the giver of all power and wealth , is like a cancer which destroys its victims. Psalm 62:11,Psalm 101:5
With power and affluence also come distractions which prevent people from spending quality time for the things of God .
Pride stifles the love of God in a man's heart and it hinders intimate relationship with God.
Some people remember God and his Church when they are passing through hard times . After God has answered their prayers and granted their petitions, they forget God and his Church. They keep off ; until the next big problem creeps up on them.
Then , again, they would remember that there is a God in heaven and that His Church and servants are here on earth!
Feelings of unworthiness are caused by a lack of faith and assurance that we and every one who has accepted and confessed Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour have been forgiven and cleansed of ALL sins.
Some times, the root cause of this problem could be that we have not forgiven ourselves. Even when we know that God has forgiven us, we feel unworthy to receive from God , unworthy to be used by God.
This not humility . It limits the work of God in us, just as pride does.
When we know people's life story, we could feel that their past deeds disqualify them before God. So,when God leads us to minister to such people we see the "enormity" of their sins and dodge the assignment!
This area of forgiveness of sins and feelings of unworthiness has to be dealt with in order for us to flow in and with the Holy Spirit.
Have you forgiven yourself ? Do you believe that God forgiven you and has thrown your sins into the Sea of Forgetfulness; never to be remembered anymore?
That person in your church , in your family, office or neighbourhood, your friend who you "know very well" ; those who claim to be "born again" now.
Do you doubt that they have been forgiven and cleansed , completely?
The accuser of the brethren , Satan ,would use the weapon of lack of self-worth to keep reminding us of our "sinful unworthiness" and would ask " Hath God saith you are forgiven...?"
When you fail to forgive yourself and do not believe in the finished work of Jesus Christ, you are assisting Satan to stifle your spiritual growth!
May the word of God which says, The just shall live by faith. Romans 1:17b be engraved in our hearts and soul.Amen.
If God had chosen to relate with human beings on the basis of man's "cleanliness" or "holiness", then who would qualify to be chosen ?
What man or woman ,even after 40 days of fasting and praying, can stand before this holy God to claim to be clean or holy?
The Bible says, But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities , like the wind have taken us away. Isaiah 64 :6
The proud heart says "Thank God , I am not like that person! I don't drink, smoke, fornicate, commit adultery, cheat ,steal or lie and I don't walk down the High Street , half naked!"
Good for you that you don't do these things!
But what of the other sins which you are guilty of?
Are you not implacably merciless and ruthless?
You harbour envy and hatred in your heart, you kill people with your words and with swords ; your feet are swift to shed human blood!
You are unrelenting in oppressing children , women , orphans and the poor in your midst!
Indeed you are a hypocrite; like a whitened sepulcher! White -washed on the outside, appearing to be pious, humble and holy, but filled with evil and rottenness inside your heart.
Sin is sin. Whether you are guilty of one sin only; before God you are as guilty as the person with one hundred sins!
When the wind ( our iniquities) blows us away, we stagger and fall before God.
We cannot stand before God and beat our chests,claiming any form of "holiness"!
He says ,That no flesh should glory in his presence.1 Corinthians 1:29..
Our "holiness" or lack of it becomes irrelevant in the presence of his mercy and grace . He relates with mankind by grace through the blood of Jesus Christ.
Jesus is the Lamb of God that was slain and worthy is the lamb.
By his sacrifice he has made us righteous and worthy to be acceptable to his Father. This is our assurance as Christians.
But for his mercy, mankind would have been consumed by the fire of his holiness.
Realisation of the awesomeness of his holiness could make one feel unworthy and unqualified to receive his visitation and his attention, for even one minute.
Can you imagine this awesome God pleading with man to believe in and trust in him?
No wonder David exclaimed in Psalm 8:3,4:
When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained;
What is man , that thou art mindful of him ? and the son of man that thou visitest him?
We should reverence God for who he is ; acknowledging the awesomeness of his power and glory.While thanking him for the gift of his son, Jesus Christ, who has chosen us by his grace and made us qualified to be called his sons and daughters.
As such, we should come boldly into his presence; not with pride or with pseudo humility . Our faith rests on his loving acceptance of us , just as we are, with warts and all.
Because of the blood of Jesus that was shed on our behalf.