Be Careful of Praise

Someone praised me yesterday. It warmed my heart. I have to admit it. And the fact that it was public didn’t hurt anything.

Then I remembered it was only two days ago that I wrote about one of my spiritual heroes:

Teresa of Ávila–

Beg our Lord to grant you perfect love for your neighbor. If someone else is well spoken of, be more pleased than if it were yourself; this is easy enough, for if you were really humble, it would vex you to be praised.

And then came the memory of someone I was counseling (not in a professional sense, I shun licenses and such). This person was filled with pride.

Realizing that in someone else (to use an old Christian word) convicted me, also.

The people who studied such things–I’m not referring to psychologists but to thousands of years of spiritual seekers–have traced the genealogy of sin. That family tree begins with pride.

Overcoming pride can be a life’s work. But only after recognizing it within.

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