But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” - James 4:6
During our summer classes a couple of years ago marriage counselor Billy Grammer taught us that marriages can survive all sorts of hurts, disappointments and trauma. But the one thing that nearly always kills love is a prideful heart that can’t admit wrong. Why does humility seem so much harder for us to choose than pride? Why is owning and accepting responsibility for our behavior and humbly asking for forgiveness so hard for us?
There is a marked difference between a statement of regret that acknowledges words were offensive and owning the emotional pain inflicted. This past weekend I offended my husband with a small, thoughtless criticism. I wanted to say, “Grow up! Put on your big girl panties!” (And, I did say something a little softer. but similar.)
But, God opposes the proud. Loving well means I allow myself to feel what someone else is feeling with compassion rather than justifying my right to my own thoughts and behaviors. Humility is the key to compassion. Humility allows me to unlock a hard heart, recognizing within myself the very same curse all humanity shares – our need of abundant grace.