Winning Ways - from Hillcrest Baptist Church, Austin, Texas  Contact Tom Goodman, Pastor
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Edging God Out
by Tom Goodman
April 29, 2009

I read about a man in Pennsylvania who insisted on representing himself before the court after being charged with drunk driving.  He told the judge the state laws don't apply to him because, he said, "I live inside myself, not in Pennsylvania," and therefore he was a sovereign country that couldn't be prosecuted.  The judge decided the man needed a psychological evaluation.

Ya think?

Here's the sad thing:  Most of us feel the same way.  The only difference between this man and the rest of us is that this man said it out loud!

Go on:  Admit it.  We behave like we're a sovereign country, independent of everyone else around us.  We let our desires take precedence over any consideration of others.

Pride is at the root of everything that ruins us.  Think about it.  Why do people go to their grave refusing to admit their lives could ever be so sinful that they would need Jesus to save them?  Why do we put ourselves into deep debt and even live on God's tithe in order to put ourselves in houses, clothing, cars, and schools that impress others?  Why do people neglect to pray, assuming their own wits can get them by?  Why do people look away from the way God has commanded them to live and form their own version of morality?  Why do we look smugly on someone else's sins, thinking we are somehow beyond the reach of sin ourselves?  When we do fall into sin, why do we refuse to bring it to God so things can be set straight again?

The answer to all those questions: Pride.

Ken Blanchard, co-author of the One-Minute Manager and many other books on leadership, wrote, "The biggest addiction we have to overcome is the human ego.  Why?  Because ego stands for Edging God Out."

We could all use help battling our ego.  Join us this Sunday @ 10 for a message called, "How to Keep Your Pride from Ruining You."  It's the third study of our sermon series called "Bumper-Sticker Wisdom."

On another note, there are a couple of things from last week I don't want you to miss.  In last week's LeaderLines I informed everyone about some major gifts we'll use for capital improvements (click here).  And you really should view the testimonies from last Saturday's Network for Life fundraiser (click here).  You'll hear Michelle Miller, who sings in the choir, Donna Rivera, who also sings in the choir and serves on our custodial staff, and Jan Whitney, who began attending in January.  Their stories will remind you that we serve a great and good God!


Weblog:  Check out my blog, "Get Anchored."  Some things to look for...

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