LIFE Lesson "Pride"
I would like to highlight one example found in the scriptures. King Uzziah was only “16”, yes “16” when he was placed as ruler of Judah. He wasn’t the first young person to be given a place of great responsibility or authority in scripture nor would he be the last. In verse 5 we read, “As long as he sought the Lord, God gave him success”. King Uzziah reigned 52 years. During his reign he was victorious in many battles, he rebuilt towns and towers. He became admired and prosperous by neighboring communities. He established a military, and developed a number of weapons and tools. In verse 16 we read, “But Uzziah became powerful, his pride led to his downfall. He was unfaithful to the Lord his God”, Uzziah went into the Temple to burn incense to the Lord, a task and responsibility given to the priests alone. When confronted by the priest he became angry and ignored their council. He was stricken with leprosy and was plagued with it the rest of his life. Uzziah was an effective king and leader, unfortunately he is not remembered for his great accomplishments, but rather his failure.
This is a life lesson we can all learn from today. We may read the text and think well that is just like this minister or leader? We can build ourselves up and stroke our ego’s by believing that we would never fall into the trap that Uzziah did. Unfortunately, pride is a temptation we all have to deal with. We can all begin to entertain the thoughts of look what I built, look at my prestigious role and position, who are you to hold me accountable, or who are you to tell me. Although we may not be stricken by leprosy there will be a consequence that we will have to live with. When we didn’t have much we needed to depend on the Lord as Uzziah did. God gave him success. When we begin to remove God from the equation and make it about self-serving, focus, absorption, we will miss the mark of all that God has for us.
In closing, Jesus said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the fullest.” John 10:10