Pride & Hope


I am a strange mixture of incredible inner strength and great insecurity, of a desire to laugh and an intense and often overly serious view of the world, of occasional bravery and great, awkward shyness. As a child I learned to be sweet, which perhaps is good in a child, but it’s something that developed into an act. I learned to appear nice, to say and do the right thing. I was too afraid of…being real. I could analyze this in detail; multiple reasons and multiple and complex streams of thought and behavior converge here. But as Jane Austen would say, it was affected behavior. As the apostle Paul would say, I have often been “a clanging cymbal” (I Corinthians 13:1), worthless without genuine love……..If God were to pull back the covers to show me myself in the stark light of absolute Truth, I’m sure I would be overwhelmed with hopelessness. Praise God He does not let us see ourselves as we truly are, at least not all at once. I hope that my friends and family-and gentle proddings from God-will move me in the right direction, that I will, in spite of my hopeless pride, be open to some kind of reproof, that I’ll be able to discern which corrections to heed and what of my own self-condemnation is completely unnecessary. I’m tired of being human, with all the necessary imperfections that implies. If nothing else, I’ve learned to laugh at my own occasional ridiculousness, which gives me hope.”

“A Walk With Jane Austen” By Lori Smith

As I was reading through her book, I came across the above excerpt by Lori….and thought ‘wow, that certainly describes me.’ I have trouble understanding myself, so it’s no wonder that hardly anyone else can. I seem to be, as Lori puts it, ‘a strange mixture’ of opposites. I too struggle with pride, and affected behavior. But, like Lori, I am slowly learning “to laugh at my own occasional ridiculousness”, and that “gives me hope”.

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