A Recipe for Chaos

5 Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the
spirit that he has made to dwell in us”? 6 But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God
opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:5-6).

Can you think of a scary opponent that you would not like to face off against in a competition?
Would you like to play basketball against Lebron James? How about trying to tackle Adrian
Peterson in football? Do you think you could hit a pitch from the best major league pitcher?
How about trying to win a footrace against Usain Bolt?

All of these athletes are the best in the world. If you were on their opposing team things
would not go well for you. You would lose. They are the best. You would have every right to
be scared to play against them.

But more than this analogy, can you imagine if God was on the opposing team? You
know who is infinitely more scary than Lebron James? It’s the one who created Lebron James
and gave him all this athletic ability. You don’t want this God on the opposing team.

In our verses for today, James says there is one way to guarantee that God will be on the
team opposite you. That will happen if you harden your heart in pride against him. Pride is the
horrible root of all sin. Pride says to God, “I know better! I can do it all by myself! I don’t need
you!” God says that if this is your stance towards him, he will oppose you.

But there is also a life-giving promise in this verse. It’s that God will give grace. He
loves to give grace. Do you know who get to receive grace from him? Those who are humble.
Those who humble themselves before him and reject an attitude of pride.

Which do you want?

Read Proverbs 11:2
• What is the connection between humility and wisdom?
• What is the connection between pride and disgrace?
• Have you ever experienced this proverb in your life?

Our Father, help us to be humble. We know that you love to give grace to those who confess
their need of you. May we see our need and never assume that we can run our lives without you.
We know that you are the Creator and author of life. It would be so foolish for us to try and run
from you. We know that perfect joy is found in you. May we flee from selfish pride and run to
you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.