Love vs. Pride

Openers

1.       *Discussion* If someone is unfriendly to you how does that make you feel? Do unfriendly people appear prideful? What message are you sending when you choose not to talk to someone?

2.      *Activity* Have everyone stand in a circle and one by one jump in the middle to do the dumbest dance move they’ve ever seen. Are you drawn to people who don’t care what other people think?

3.      *Discussion* listen to the country song – “I Wanna Talk about Me” Do you know what a one-upper is? Do you like being around people like that? What qualities set you a part from everyone else? What are you really good at or naturally gifted at? Do you ever use those areas of talent to cover up insecurities?

4.      *Discussion* What do you think of when you hear the name “Bill Clinton?” What qualities do you notice when you meet people? Do the good qualities or the bad qualities stand out?

 

Main Points (Choose ONE)

1.      Even the appearance of pride prevents relationship.

2.      Pride puts people below you, love elevates everyone around you.

Foundations

1 Corinthians 13“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.”

Pride is the assumption that other people are of less value than oneself. It could result in arrogance, boastfulness, or just simply ignoring other people. None of those reflect an attitude of love. In fact, these things make love almost impossible since they drive others away.

 

Jeremiah 9:23-24This is what the LORD says: “Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the LORD.

God is saying here that the only thing that you should be proud of is your relationship with Him. Pride creates dependences on things such as wisdom, strength, and riches when the only thing that can be depended on is Him.

1.      Do we let differences prevent us from developing new relationships?

          a.      Have you ever said something like “I wouldbe friends with him/her, but we don’t have anything in common?”    

                   i.      Are we too busy focusing on the things we like, to develop relationship with someone who has different

interests?

          b.      Is it hard to trust someone that isn’t just like you?

                    i.      Have you ever said “there’s no way they could understand” and used that statement as an excuse to not open

up to them?

                  ii.      Starting new relationships can be risky. Why?

           c.       What things prevent us from developing new relationships?

                      i.      Christians should be the friendliest people on earth. Are they? (Why or why not?)

                    ii.      What are we saying as the “Body of Christ” if we’re not the friendliest people on earth?

          d.      How does pride hinder our relationship with the Lord?   

                     i.      Does it prevent openness?    

                              1.      Why or why not?

                             2.      Why is being open important?

                    ii.      How are shame and pride related? Do you think shame is just another version of pride?

           e.       What things do we all have in common?

                     i.      All those who hear the gospel can have the understanding to know the Lord.

                    ii.      We all boast in God rather than ourselves. See Jeremiah 9:23-24, above.

2.      Pride is focusing on the things that set you apart from the rest.

            a.      Not everyone can be wise, strong, or rich.

                      i.      Do you find security knowing that you’re good at some things that other people aren’t?

                     ii.      How is your happiness tied to success?

          b.       (Guys) Are you in a consistent battle to measure to measure up to those around you? (Girls) Do you feel like you’ll

never be good enough to deserve [something you really want]?

                      i.      What or who makes you feel that way?

          c.       Who do feel the most encouraged around?

                      i.      What is about them that makes you feel encouraged?

           d.      When you walk into XA to feel like you are there to serve or be served? Why or why not?

           e.       Can you have a servant’s heart and be prideful at the same time? Why or why not?

 

Human Struggles

1.      Sometimes we let our insecurities prevent us from developing new relationship.

2.      Pride creates dependence on earthly things, and it’s really hard to let those things go in order to become dependent on God.

3.      It’s hard to focus on others when we’re too busy talking about ourselves.

4.      Constantly paying attention to those around us is hard.

5.      Seeing the good over the bad in people can be difficult.

 

Application Helps

1.      Set a goal to speak to every person you meet. Never worry about being awkward, learn to embrace it.

2.      Try new things to humble yourself. Make a comment to pray every day.

3.      When you talk to people make the conversation about them. Ask them questions and be interested in their answers. Always look for common ground and ways to view things from their perspective.

4.      Be intentional about affirming those around you. Learn about your friends. Find out what they like. What they need. Learn how to serve them best.