Although that sounds cheesy, I must admit that so much changes when we approach life, our walk with God, and others with gratitude first.
It’s also how to approach being a leader.
It’s easy in your workplace, family, friend group, neighborhood, or wherever you have relationship to fall into a rut of thinking you’re the only one who does the work, you’re the only one who cares, or you’re the only one capable. Yup…it’s easy to fall into the rut of pride. Pride “carries with it a connotation that displays an inflated sense of one’s own worth or personal status and typically makes one feel a sense of superiority over others and can easily make someone look condescendingly at others” (Jack Wellman).
Pride says “only I can do this,” “no one can do better than me,” and “it’s all about me.” However, pride also sounds like, “I always make the sacrifice” or “They never [insert ANYTHING].” It’s when we focus on ourselves and all of our observations of the world are filtered through how we affected it or how it affects us. Pride is all about the self, but it wraps itself in many deceptive packages. I’ve learned that when I start describing situations or people in absolutes like always or never, that I’m probably slipping into a proud moment. It is pride when we presume the roles and importance of others.
There’s a coffee maker in the office — I bet you already know where this is going. More frequently than not, I need to fill the reservoir. When I’m coffee deprived and I need to add water to the machine, it feels like another hurdle to my caffeinated joy. “I always fill the coffee machine. No one else does. Everyone uses it and I’m left to be the responsible adult who refills it.” When living in my complaint-driven sin, I struggle with a ‘woe-is-me-I’m-the-only-one’ complex. In reality, EVERYONE refills the coffee maker and I don’t refill it after I use it EVER. When we choose to believe that we all fill it and I actually express gratitude that we even have access to a nice coffee maker, the extra minute seems absolutely painless. I’ve also just actively combated pride.
Every day, I push myself to practice gratitude for those around me in order to grow in my own personal humility. I make it a practice to acknowledge that I can’t do ‘it’ (whatever ‘it’ might be) without those around me. Maybe you can take a step to grow in gratitude today too?