devozine

Spiritual Practice

FRIENDSHIP AND HUMILITY

Mark Elliston, 17

During middle school, my friends and I were close. We talked about everything and learned valuable life lessons together. High school changed all that. We began to experience emotional and spiritual separation.

The Lord says:
Don’t brag about your wisdom
or strength or wealth.
Jeremiah 9:23 (CEV)

Over time, my friends’ personalities changed. Several of my friends had girlfriends and, without thinking about it, began to neglect their other friends. Some of my friends began to tease other people and yet would fight anyone who dared to tease them. I could see that my friends were on a downhill slide, but I could do nothing about it. Soon they began to shun me because I had significantly better grades and more self-control than they did, and I made it worse by acting as if I were better than my friends.

Needless to say, my pride led to even more separation. The more my friends ignored and criticized me, the more self-centered and haughty I became. Soon I was the one teasing and holding grudges against anyone who teased me.

By the summer after my sophomore year, I realized the error of my ways. I did some soul searching and realized that I needed a dose of humility. I am no better than any of my friends. Everyone is equal in God’s eyes.


THINK ABOUT IT:
How has pride gotten in the way of your friendships? How can you learn to be humble?

—from devozine (March/April 2012). Copyright © 2012 by The Upper Room. All rights reserved.

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