In the summer 1986, two ships collided in the Black Sea, causing a tragic loss of life. The news of the disaster was further darkened when an investigation revealed the cause of the accident that hurled hundreds of passengers into the icy waters. The blame did not belong to defective radar or thick fog but to human stubbornness. Both captains were aware of the other ship’s presence and could have taken evasive action to avert the collision. But according to news reports, neither wanted to give way to the other. Each was too proud to yield the right-of-way.
Even greater havoc and loss can be created in human relationships for much the same reason – “envy and self-seeking.” We prefer to blame the world’s problems on religious or political differences, but James says that the root problem is pride and self-centeredness. It caused the archangel Lucifer to fall from the heavens (Isaiah 14). And our first parents, Adam and Eve, lost their innocence for the same reason.
The only way to keep jealousy and envy from turning into major disasters is to draw on the wisdom that comes from above, wisdom that is pure, peaceable, gentle, willing to yield, and full of mercy and goodness. That will mark the beginning of harmony – not havoc. – Martin R. De Haan II
Some troubles come from wanting to have our own way; others come from being allowed to have it.
- April 25, Vol. 1, Our Daily Bread