By Ryan Shaw
Ryan serves as the international lead facilitator of Student Volunteer Movement 2 and currently lives among the unreached.
One of the most consistently and emphatically denounced areas of sin in the Bible is that of pride. Pride sent Lucifer from heaven and Adam and Eve from paradise. Jesus frequent rebukes to the Pharisees reveal the pride in their hearts.
Whether through parables and examples or direct confrontation, He doesn’t hesitate to address the underlying issue of pride.
This heart condition remains today. Pride keeps us from abandoned pursuit of God and the fulfillment of His destiny in our lives – both individually and corporately. We want to do things our way, to get credit for what we’ve done, and have control of our lives.
How often do we take the glory for something that Jesus alone deserves? Each one of us must confront this sin in our own hearts and allow God to examine us and root it out if we are to serve Him with an undivided heart, seeing Him use our lives effectively for His glory.
A few months ago I (Ryan) was in Indonesia talking with some missionaries who had visited the Middle East. I asked them what type of cross cultural worker was needed to break open that part of the world to the gospel.
The wife response shocked me as she stated,
“The workers must be willing to completely die to themselves and be hated, criticized, rumored about, lied to, even spit upon for about the first two years. Then, if they do this with the utmost humility and love, they will begin to gain an audience.”
While pride and self are perhaps the greatest idols American youth face, God’s plan for His people in reaching the lost is that we continually decrease and allow Him to increase in us. He wants to use us to show forth His glory and purpose, but all too often others see more of you and me than Jesus.
To be a part of the army that God is raising up for His global purpose, there isn’t room for idolatry, or for conducting our lives according to the opinions of others. It’s time to trash this idol, letting Christ deal with our hearts and clothe us with His humility.
“Jesus, I confess that I have been more concerned with my life and what I want than with allowing you to rule and reign in my midst. I want to decrease that you may increase. Change me with your love. I never want to steal away your glory, but instead consistently reflect it and give glory to you for all things.
I give you the right to my life. Help me to die to my pride and to wanting to make a name for myself and to put on humility. I welcome your incredible grace which empowers us for change.”
Scriptures to meditate on…
Numbers 12:1-3 Proverbs 13:10 Proverbs 16:18 Daniel 5:19-20 Isaiah 57:15 Zephaniah 3:11-12
Mark 7:21-22 Philippians 2:5-8 James 4:6-10 1 Peter 5:5-7 I John 2:15-16
Abandoned Devotion Prayer Gatherings this Fall
The purpose of Abandoned Devotion prayer gatherings is to seek the face of God for an outpouring of missionary vision on today’s generation of young adults. This is accomplished by gathering young people together from various streams in the body of Christ, and seeking God on behalf of this generation all over the world.