Pride is the state of a heart that has become self-reliant, self-inflated, and God-ignoring. We are all prone to it. But what makes pride so dangerous is its pervasive ability to hide from oneself. This is why the Bible continually commends the people of God to live in community with one another to expose sin and to receive grace. However, we should be aware that there are seven traits that all prideful people reveal in their day-to-day behavior; this should lead us to examine our hearts and expose the ever-hiding pride in our hearts.
1. Frequently fire-off opinions and quick judgments.
Prideful people believe that they have a “gift” of discernment that allows them to see brokenness and sin in others with complete accuracy. Because of this, they tend to make judgments and freely give their (often negative) opinion of others. They often neglect to look for reasons to rejoice at God’s work in others because they are too preoccupied looking for sin. Prideful people tend to judge themselves by their motives and others by their actions.
2. Are often fearful about the future.
Prideful people are overly concerned with the future because they believe the lie that they are in control. They mistakingly think that the success or failure of their future is reliant upon their ability to come through. This causes them to wear anxiety like a straight jacket while living in an always-fretful life.
3. Are overly concerned with what others think.
Prideful people want others to think well of them so much that they shackle themselves to others opinions. When someone thinks highly of them, it goes to their head. When someone thinks unfavorably of them, it cuts straight to the heart. Prideful people live their lives trying to please others because they want to be viewed as competent, able, and successful.
4. Are defensive and easily offended.
Prideful people think so highly of themselves that they dismiss critiques and become easily injured when their sin is exposed. They don’t ask others around them for feedback in fear of having their brokenness exposed. Consequently, when others expose their brokenness, they immediately assumed that their perspective is flawed at best and wrong at worst.
5. Feel unenthusiastic or threatened by the success of others.
Prideful people rejoice at the failures of others and mourn at the success of others. They tend to secretly hope that their peers fail so that they can feel more superior. When others do succeed, they don’t celebrate with them; instead, they avoid them and even spite them. Prideful people love to win and hate when others do.
6. Routinely spend more time talking than listening.
Prideful people love to talk about what they know, who they know, and why you should know what they know. They like to talk. They love to use you as an audience for them to proclaim their infinite wisdom and knowledge. At the same time, prideful people don’t listen well. After all, what’s the point in listening when I would rather hear from myself anyways?
7. Don’t pray.
Prideful people don’t pray because prayer, by definition, requires humility. Therefore they live their lives void of prayer—especially in the simplest of things. They don’t believe they need God’s grace throughout their day because they are sufficient in and of themselves. Proud people do not pray.