Sometimes, it feels very good to see someone experience the adage, “What goes around, comes around.” Then, you realize that the feeling is more flesh than anything else; and, if you’re serious about your salvation, you let that “joy” go. Quickly.
I had a moment like this recently and it made me wonder: Am I not allowed to have these type of (negative) feelings anymore? Am I crossing into holier-than-thou territory? The simplified response would be “no” and “no.” The answer, however, does go a bit deeper than just what a one-word response can provide.
Let’s take a look at Proverbs 11:2, a verse about pride.
When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom. (ESV)
In multiple versions of the Bible, the verse begins with an interesting word: When. The Bible doesn’t suggest that pride “could” happen but that it will happen. Now, this is not to imply that all pride is sinful—there is a good sense of pride (one for those living in obedience to our faith)—but Proverbs 11:2 is talking about the negative side of pride. So, the Word substantiates that yes, I am allowed to have a negative feeling, but I should have a sense of remorse for it because I know better. What about the questions of “holier-than-thou-territory?” Proverbs 11:2 does not say I will become such a thing. It does, however, say that humility will bring wisdom. And if there is one thing necessary to do this thing called Life, wisdom’s needed!
I got myself together. I won’t lie and say that I didn’t relish in the moment for a while, but a convicted spirit is nothing to play with.