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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

A Basis of Cruelty

From your experience, what is the relationship between pride in yourself and cruelty towards others? Why is that so? (Serendipity Bible 10th Anniversary Edition, page 978).

Pride based upon utter certitude about what is owed to me (in contrast to what I owe to God and others) is the basis of the cruelest pride. And I certainly don't have to be objectively deprived in any significant way to become impassioned by a false sense of self-righteousness. I then lose all sense of being blessed and instead find myself being put upon without limit. This observation is based upon my cruelty once to the staff at Subway over a petty amount of money and what I took to be ambiguity in the listing of prices on their menu board. I lost all sense of proportion and a thoroughgoing cruelty to the staff prevailed. Despite that I would not in a million years have traded the advantages of my position in terms of work and salary for that of the staff serving me, I fancied I was being sorely put upon and deprived—a sense of victimization prevailed. Indeed, there were certainly victims that day, but I was not one of them. In my wild ride of rectitude I gave up each and every one of the fruit of the spirit: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23 NIV). Thus, when I find these missing now, I look to indicators of pride based upon self-centered expression of certitude.

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