Everyone has a favorite pie. Mine’s blueberry. Wild Maine Blueberry Pie to be exact. I’d eat it for breakfast today if I had some. What’s your favorite? Lemon Meringue? Key Lime? Apple? Double-Chocolate-Whipped-Cream-Peanut-Butter-Cheesecake-Chip? (That’s my favorite every 28 days.)
How about Humble Pie? I find it very tasty, but if you replace that “t” with an “n” you’ll know how I really feel about it. It tastes something like this:
God can’t stomach arrogance or pretense; believe me, he’ll put those upstarts in their place. Proverbs 16:5 (The Message)
Or if you prefer a little different recipe it tastes like this:
The Lord detests the proud; they will surely be punished. Proverbs 16:5 (New Living Translation)
Yup, I know that taste well. I’ve been put in my place, sent to my room, had blessings taken away, and been made to eat my own words. Eating Humble Pie gives me a stomach ache.
My husband says I am the sweetest most strong willed person he’s ever met. I suppose that means I try to disguise my pride under a sugar-coated topping. So maybe you won’t notice when I’m thinking that I can do that better than you. Or I have the answers for everything. Or even when I think I’m dirt and all I do is navel-staring and negative self-talk. It’s all pride, just different flavors: extroverted and introverted.
Stick with me here. It’s all pride because it’s all about me. Thinking better of me, or thinking less of me. Me, me, me. Notice me that I’m so good. Notice me that I’m such a mess. But whatever you do—notice me!
It’s usually easier for me to eat the humble pie of my extroverted pride than my introverted pride. Because for most of my life I thought thinking less of myself was actually the opposite of pride…I believed it was humility. Until the day my husband told me to stop saying “I’m such a mess.”
“Who are you to curse what God has deemed beautiful? Thinking less of yourself is not humility, it’s pride turned inside upon yourself. True humility is believing what God says about you is true. You are allowed to feel good about yourself. And you don’t need to worry about going too far with that. God will put you in your place if He needs to.”
Thank you Lord for a Godly husband with the guts to tell it like it is. And willing to repeat himself whenever I need to hear it—like last night. When I was thinking both too highly and too lowly of myself. Either way I still land in the same place:
Pride lands you flat on your face; Proverbs 29:23a (The Message)
Which never feels good. But accepting and believing what God says is true, and thinking more highly of others than I do myself is true humility and:
humility prepares you for honors. Proverbs 29:23b (The Message)
Godly honors. Not like the ones I try to get on my own that reorient the nose on my face. Humble pie, however you slice it, is about thinking less about who I am and more about who God is:
The only accurate way to understand ourselves is by what God is and by what he does for us, not by what we are and what we do for him. Romans 12:3 (The Message)
I’m praying for the grace to help me eat this humble pie today. So I can stop thinking all about me and start thinking more about God. And more about you. So I’ll start by praying for you:
Lord, I pray for every person sharing this meal of your Word with me today. Speak your truth and in your mercy reveal to us any prideful areas in our hearts. May we surrender these areas to you as you fill us with the knowledge of who you are. May we not think too highly of ourselves, or to lowly of ourselves, but think instead of the needs of others and of putting your love and mercy on display today. Amen.