Reflections on Pride Month: Shouldn’t It Be for Everyone?

Jun 4, 2021 by David Fowler

Reflections on Pride Month: Shouldn’t It Be for Everyone?
Several years ago, June was designated as “Pride Month” by the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, transgender community. That designation has since been picked up and celebrated by many in the business community and even many civil governing bodies. This morning I came to better understand the designation and its growing acceptance. In fact, here is why I think we should designate every day as “Pride Day” and make it for all of us.

Why Pride Day Should be for Everyone

This morning I began to review all the references in scripture to the words “pride” and “humble.” As I did, it settled on me that pride and humility cannot exist together.
For example, I cannot at the same time and in regard to the same thing have pride in myself and humility towards God. Impossible. It is simply the law of anthesis.
But here is the kicker. Inasmuch as all things are from God, come through God, and are being directed back to God (Romans 11:36) and inasmuch as I live, move, and have my very being from God (Acts 17:28), then all pride in myself is at all times and regarding all things necessarily excluded.
Yet, it is clear in Scripture that boasting is part of human nature. The problem with boasting is that our boasting, our glorying, should be in God, not anything to do with ourselves. See, e.g., Jeremiah 9:23-24, Romans 5:2, 5:17,  and James 4:16)

Pride Day for Christians

Saying we need “Pride Day,” not “Pride Month,” and that it should be for everyone, may sound strange to Christians, but the truth is I grapple with pride of self every day and to think that I do not have prideful moments every day is itself prideful, because sanctification is only complete when “this mortal has put on immortality” (1 Corinthians 15:53-54).
Why such a comprehensive assessment of myself? Because any time I seek anything other than the glory of God—whether in my thought life or my actions—I am not being humble in relation to God. 
There is nothing in which I personally and of myself can ever glory. What a blow to pride!

Taking Pride in My Salvation

Eventually, God graciously brought me to the realization that even my salvation was completely His doing, even the faith by which I believed was the work and “gift of God” (Ephesian 2:8).
Throughout my life, I had minimized the force of that verse. I thought I had contributed to my salvation by “seeking God” when others had not, and God, foreseeing that, had granted me the gift of faith. I had, in a sense, “earned” the gift by what God saw me doing.
In my most prideful moments, I had the audacity to think I had decided, of my own volition, to follow Jesus. That, in itself, was most prideful.
I know most today say Christ died for all that I, along with everyone else, might be able to choose Christ, but, in the final analysis, that still leaves my choosing and, therefore, me, as the final cause of my salvation.
In sum, it was pride that had allowed me to minimize the full scope of God’s work in my salvation. The “all” in Romans 11:36 referenced above means all or it is a lie.
And to be honest, I think it is that pride in salvation, which I possessed, that accounts for much of the animosity directed to “Christians” by those in the LGBTQ+ community. They sense it.

My Personal Application.

Last week I wrote this, and this week I’m trying to live by it:
“If we live by faith in the approach of a calamitous season, this will put us upon the search and examination of our own hearts, what accession we have made to the sins that have procured these judgments.”
As I reflected this morning on the issue of pride, I realized that I would like to think that the animosity that has been directed toward me by that community over the years was because they saw Jesus in me, but that would not be true.
Jesus was “meek and lowly of heart” (Matthew 11:28). Jesus, even though “being in the form of God … took upon him[self]the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross” (Philippians 2:6, 8).
My prior attitude toward my salvation was not the attitude of Christ, and therefore, it could not have been the heart and attitude of Christ in me that generated animosity.

The ‘Blessed’ Kind of Animosity

I believe I am changing in many ways, though my understanding of what it means to be human, made male and female, and human sexuality is the same. Those view are rooted in what I believe about God and His original good creation.
Because of my views on these matters, I will still find a lot of animosity directed toward me by various communities within society who hate the boundaries established by God in creation. But if it is for that reason, not my apparent pride in myself or my salvation, then that is okay.
Jesus said: “Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you” (Matthew 5:11-12).
But any animosity directed at me because of prideful attitudes is not false nor is it generated because of Him and for His sake, but because of my pride. Pride is never blessed by God, and so it is a blessing when He humbles us before Him.

If today’s commentary either intrigues or befuddles you, you might find helpful today’s second episode in the podcast series, The Why and How of Christian Political Engagement.

David Fowler is an attorney and served in the Tennessee state Senate for 12 years before joining FACT as President in 2006.

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