Beware of Butt Cocoons....and Pride
Updated: Dec 26, 2019
Prideful about something in your life? How to expect and embrace the fall
God has a real sense of humor. Why would he send me ideas to write about the easy, boring way? What fun would there be in that? None! I’m convinced that’s why he decides to continue to reveal himself in crazy, funny ways.
Today He might have gotten a little carried away. Even though he had me falling down laughing.
Here’s what played out. I bought myself an awesome new bungee chair for my 48 hours/week at the ballparks. I will tell you right now, this chair is a gift from God. It’s like a hammock and chair all in one, and when you sit in it, the chaos of life fades away. It wraps you up like a baby blanket and rocks the crazy sports parent right out of you. Absolutely the perfect cocoon for a ballpark butt. It’s from heaven.
So I show up to a tennis meet tonight toting my brand new chair. Since most have never seen one like it, it created quite the chatter amongst the nearby parents. I was completely proud of this chair. I bragged about it like it was my pet dog. I proclaimed to them, “this is the greatest chair that has ever existed”. They were completely intrigued. And they were, I’d like to think, completely jealous. Because, well, they wanted my butt cocoon and couldn't have it.
So as they were sitting there in their awe and envy, I set the chair up and proceeded to sit down in it. After sitting down, I recall a strange sensation and that moment of thinking “I don’t remember it leaning so far back”. But as soon as that thought had crossed my mind, it was too late. I was on my way back.
I can’t even tell you how slow the fall was. I think I could have baked an entire chicken in the time that it took. It was totally in slow motion. But eventually I hit the ground. And when I did, my legs were sticking straight up in the air for all to see. The chair made this chair fall look worse than any. Because it was a bungee chair, it had sucked me in and put me in a position that no chair faller had been in before. It was so precarious, it took a very long 30 seconds to figure out how to even move out of it. All the while, people from all over the tennis courts were staring at me. When I finally managed to figure out how to get out of it, it was anything but pretty. In fact, one sweet friend close by commented “your son is shaking his head at you”. Yep, I bet he was. I looked like a total idiot.
There are some times in our lives when we can get pretty prideful. Perhaps it’s about our possessions, our jobs, or our relationships. Moments where we forget to humble ourselves.
Truth is, God doesn’t like self-righteous pride. God deserves and needs to be number one. When we become consumed with ourselves and all that we have, we are putting ourselves above Him. We are taking credit for what God has provided. And because of that, there are consequences.
“Pride goes before destruction, and haughtiness before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18
It is inevitable that at some point in time, we are going to be put in our place. We will be humbled. Just like I had an embarrassing fall after flaunting my possession, God too will allow you to be humbled in the prideful places in your life. It may not be physically, but there will be a fall.
Here’s the good news. We don’t have to be ashamed of that fall. After all, God doesn’t want us to have guilt and shame. He wants us to learn from our fall. But he doesn’t want us burying our heads.
Even though this experience could have been pretty humiliating, I was laughing throughout it. Hard. The whole time! I knew that I looked like an idiot, but I also found the humbling experience hilarious.
I'm not saying that I enjoyed the fall! Or that I even wanted it to happen! But once it did, I made the most of it. I didn’t try to hide in shame. How could I? There was no way I could hide it! Everyone had already seen it! I could have died of embarrassment in that moment. But it was a much more enjoyable experience to just brush myself off and smile through it. And that smile, I’m quite sure, made it a whole lot more comfortable for everyone around me too.
I know it seems impossible to think about smiling through those difficult falls in life. But we should. Because God tells us to:
“Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you. Instead, be very glad—for these trials make you partners with Christ in his suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing his glory when it is revealed to all the world.” 1 Peter 4:12-13 NLT
As hard as it may be, try your best during the falls in life to focus on the goodness of what you have learned. To find gladness in the correction. And use that as a lesson for how you act in the future.
For me, I got right back in that chair. I didn’t make the same mistake this time. And I’m quite certain I won’t ever again.