Proverbs in 365 Devotions

Proverbs 18:1 Whoever isolates himself seeks his own desire; he breaks out against all sound judgment.

Don't Hide With Reclusive Pride

R Aylor

Can it be prideful for someone to withdraw or isolate themselves from others? According to this verse it can. Whether we put ourselves in the spotlight to make ourselves look good or withdraw from the spotlight to keep from looking bad… either way it is all about us. When it is all about us our world view is going to be distorted. When a believer has this kind of solitary lone wolf vanity they hurt themselves as well as the kingdom of God.

Those with reclusive pride refuse to participate in small groups or other functions that involve fellowship with other believers because of how they might be perceived as socially inept. You see their spotlight is on themselves when it should be on loving the Lord with their all and their neighbor as themselves.

They refuse to step up and serve in the church through visitation or help with children’s ministries for similar reasons. It’s too risky for them to put themselves out there and try or even help someone teach a sunday-school class. They do not want to be seen as a failure.

These are all symptoms of pride.

King Saul was a prideful man for a good portion of his life. However it could be that even at the beginning his pride was concealed in feelings of inadequacy.

A good while after Saul's anointing to be king, Samuel called the 12 tribes of Israel together to proclaim publicly that Saul would become King but no one could find him.

1 Samuel 10:22 So they inquired again of the Lord, “Is there a man still to come?” and the Lord said, “Behold, he has hidden himself among the baggage.” 23 Then they ran and took him from there. And when he stood among the people, he was taller than any of the people from his shoulders upward.

This may be an example of reclusive pride at the beginning of Saul's rule. Saul may have been so afraid of being perceived as a failure that he isolated himself. Reclusive pride can sometimes be misinterpreted as meekness and humility but it is another animal all together. As Saul settled into the kingship and realized the power and authority he had and that whatever he did or said could not be opposed without repercussions… his possible pride of withdraw switched into arrogant pride which led to his removal from being king.