The first time I played a game on Monopoly with my oldest son, I destroyed him. My son had nothing left by the end of the game and didn't even want to add up what he had left. He simply got up and left table leaving everything for me to pick up. A week later I shared my secret of winning with him ( I won't share with you should I ever play Monopoly with any of you ) We ended up playing again and using my secret... he absolutely destroyed me. I arrogantly thought by sharing with him my secret that he wouldn't fully understand the strategy, but.... he did.
1 At that time Marduk-Baladan son of Baladan king of Babylon sent Hezekiah letters and a gift, because he had heard of his illness and recovery. 2 Hezekiah received the envoys gladly and showed them what was in his storehouses—the silver, the gold, the spices, the fine olive oil—his entire armory and everything found among his treasures. There was nothing in his palace or in all his kingdom that Hezekiah did not show them.
3 Then Isaiah the prophet went to King Hezekiah and asked, “What did those men say, and where did they come from?”
“From a distant land,” Hezekiah replied. “They came to me from Babylon.”
4 The prophet asked, “What did they see in your palace?”
“They saw everything in my palace,” Hezekiah said. “There is nothing among my treasures that I did not show them.”
5 Then Isaiah said to Hezekiah, “Hear the word of the LORD Almighty: 6 The time will surely come when everything in your palace, and all that your predecessors have stored up until this day, will be carried off to Babylon. Nothing will be left, says the LORD. 7 And some of your descendants, your own flesh and blood who will be born to you, will be taken away, and they will become eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon.”
8 “The word of the LORD you have spoken is good,” Hezekiah replied. For he thought, “There will be peace and security in my lifetime.”
King Hezekiah was sick before and had asked the Lord to heal him even after Isaiah had delivered the bad news that he would die. The Lord gave Hezekiah 15 more years to live and envoys were sent his way congratulating him on his recovery from being sick. With the envoy from Babylon came, Hezekiah showed them everything as noted in Isaiah 39:1-2. Isaiah was quick to deliver yet another message to Hezekiah that Babylon would soon carry off everything in his storehouses that he and those before him had built up. Over one hundred years later it happened. Isaiah's message from God came true. Hezekiah's sin was a result of pride and it affect those all around him.
So many times the last couple of years my pride took over and I misjudged so much in my life. I arrogantly thought that I could live this life without God and tried to do it. Ultimately lie after lie and sin after sin put me in places and situations as a result of my pride and arrogance. I saw the fall of my family, I saw the fall of my marriage, and I saw the beginnings of things in my children that were not good. What I am telling you today is this, do not think for one second that you can do something without God. Do not think for one second that pride is a good thing to have a lot of. Do not think that it is ok to be arrogant about things that you "think" you are good at. As fast as those things were given, they can be taken away. I was greatly humbled when God gave me my life back. I was even humbled that I got beat by my son in Monopoly. Friends.. I am here to tell you that if this is an area in your life that you struggle with, you need to give it to God. Otherwise... as I have found out the hard way... the day and time will come when you will get devoured. Think you are the best spouse? Doubt it... think you are the best parent? Doubt it... Think you are the best friend? Doubt it.... Just when you start thinking these things, you will find out how wrong you really are. Friends it is only a matter of time... Pride comes before the fall and it is true. Take it from someone who knows...
I leave you with this joke that is one of my favorites, but I also think it is pertinent to what God sees...
Late one night, a burglar broke into a house that he thought was empty. He tiptoed through the living room but suddenly he froze in his tracks when he heard a loud voice say: "Jesus is watching you!"
Silence returned to the house, so the burglar crept forward again. "Jesus is watching you," the voice boomed again.
The burglar stopped dead again. He was frightened. Frantically, he looked all around. In a dark corner, he spotted a bird cage and in the cage was a parrot.
He asked the parrot: "Was that you who said Jesus is watching me?" "Yes", said the parrot.
The burglar breathed a sigh of relief, then he asked the parrot: "What's your name?"
"Clarence," said the bird.
"That's a dumb name for a parrot," sneered the burglar. "What idiot named you Clarence?"
The parrot said, "The same idiot who named the Rottweiler, Jesus."
Father thank you humility. Thank you Father for teaching us lessons even if they are hard ones to learn. Thank you Father for tough love and thank you the most for after the fall of pride that you pick us up and show us how much you love us.