Friday, October 30, 2009

Pridefulness, Thy Name is (Gulp) Haley!

This morning while I was having my quiet time, I was perusing The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions, along with my Bible reading. Before I proceed with this post, let me just say that this is a wonderful book brimming with spiritual insights. Many of the prayers convict my heart and bring tears to my eyes. They are beautifully written, but not in a showy way. These prayers are sincere, humble, and cover every subject imaginable, from a convicted sinner's prayer to longing after God. I ran across this book because our pastor, Dr. Kroll, read from it several Sundays ago, and the words struck a chord with my heart. Stuart and I have read some together as well, and enjoy discussing how they apply to us, how we can take our prayer lives more seriously, etc.

Anyway, I ran across this convicting prayer on pride. What a snare it has been in my walk with Him! How many times it has kept me from going to Him with repentance in my heart! How often I have sat in judgment of my brothers and sisters in Christ and felt it welling up within my soul! For those of you who find yourself in my shoes, I want to share it with you:


Let not pride swell in my heart.
My nature is the mire beneath my feet,
the dust to which I shall return.

In body I surpass not the meanest reptile;
Whatever difference of form and intellect is mine
is a free grant of thy goodness;
Every faculty of mind and body is thy undeserved gift.

Low as I am as a creature, I am lower as a sinner;
I have trampled thy law times without number;
Sin's deformity is stamped upon me,
darkens my brow,
touches me with corruption:
How can I flaunt myself proudly?
Lowest abasement is my due place,
for I am less than nothing before thee.
Help me to see myself in thy sight,
then pride must wither, decay, die, perish.

Humble my heart before thee,
and replenish it with thy choicest gifts.
As water rests not on barren hill summits,
but flows down to fertilize the lowest vales,
So make me the lowest of the lowly,
that my spiritual riches may exceedingly abound.

When I leave my duties undone,
may condemning thought strip me of pride,
deepen in me devotion to thy service,
and quicken me to more watchful care.
When I am tempted to think highly of myself,
grant me to see the wily power of my spiritual enemy;
Help me to stand with wary eye on the watch-tower of faith,
and to cling with determined grasp to my humble Lord;
If I fall let me hide myself in my Redeemer's righteousness,
and when I escape, may I ascribe all deliverance to thy grace.
Keep me humble, meek, lowly.

I think my favorite line is, "My nature is the mire beneath my feet..." In other words, I'm my own worst enemy! Many times I don't even recognize I'm being prideful until the moment, conversation, etc. has passed. Then I think, "Oh no! Not again! I had such a prideful spirit about that!" Then I'll have to apologize to whoever it was, or just confess it to the Lord and start over. For me I am often deceived because I'm simply thinking, "But I'm right about this!" and not recognizing that its the way I'm being right about it! My deceptive nature...

Also, I love the line about sin's deformity being stamped upon us. How true this is! When I begin to think of my sin nature as a literal deformity in my soul, I begin to see just how ugly it must be to a pure and Holy God!

In closing, I am happy to say (without pride I hope!) that pride is something the Lord has and is taming within my heart. In the meantime, I find that this prayer helps me to put in all in perspective!

Humbly Yours,


  1. We all struggle with pride. I am currrently reading "Celebration of Discipline" as in the spiritual disciplines. Last night I read on the discipline of confession. I almost skipped it because it seemed to have a Catholic twist and I can be quick to pass judgement but I read it anyway. It was amazing. The author suggest confessing your sins not only to God but to a fellow believer. Often we can tell God anything without the realization of how bad the sin is. We may feel guilty when we've done something wrong but our conscience is often corrupt by years and years of struggling with sin. Confessing your sin to a fellow believer seems mortifying because we come to grips with what we have done. It kind of gives God a face. Forgiveness is also felt more deeply as the other believer prays with you. Release from sin and secrecy frees a person. I thought this kind of went hand in hand with pride. Pride stops us from doing so many things that would be beneficial for our spiritual health.

    Too long I know!! I think you are wonderful Haley!! Love you

  2. Not too long at all! I think you are exactly right. When we keep our struggles a secret, it def. gives Satan power over us. Better to get it out in the open with a strong fellow believer!

  3. Wow, what a beautiful and convicting poem. Thank you so much for posting that, Haley! I agree that too often it doesn't set in that I've been prideful till I am convicted on it later. The poem reminds me of a chapter in The Imitation of Christ. I love, love, love that book!

    I think that is so good to hear. You're absolutely right about confessing our sins to others as well. It is such an important step in overcoming sin but pride often gets in the way of our confessions and I can easily justify not telling others about my fault for various "reasons".

    Love you guys. You girls are such godly, encouraging examples to me!



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