“He that blesseth his friend with a loud voice, rising early in the morning, it shall be counted a curse to him.” (Prov. 27:14) Where I was born and raised at, they were called “Brown nosers,” the Bible calls them men pleasers, (Gal. 1:10) in the most modern of terminologies, it is called politics, individuals who will lift up the name of others in the hopes of “riding their coattails” to fame and fortune. It is an extended form of pride, those who would live vicariously, even when unnoticed by them, through the achievements of others.
In its basest form, it desires to not be seen as unnecessary, it craves attention, and its worst fear is to be seen by others as unprofitable, as less than. Many individuals will forgo their own desires, sometimes their entire lives, just to be part of something bigger than themselves, just to feel wanted, and it rarely matters if the individual or even group that they associate with notices them, as long as someone does. Rarely if ever, can they find value outside of themselves, they are, for the most part, worthless in their own eyes unless they are attached to something besides themselves, whether it be their employment field, a person of stature and renown in the world, an organization, it matters very little, as long as they do not have to perform for themselves.
They trust in another man, and so they are cursed, (Jer. 17:5) the level of severity of that curse is left up to the Lord, for only He knows the heart, (Jer. 17:10) but this truth can be seen in nearly every avenue of life, in fact, all who do not serve the Lord Jesus Christ to the abandonment of all else, those who have not truly been crucified with Him fall into this category. From the politician who relishes the notice and accolades of those who are considered his superiors, to the wife who depends fully upon her husband, (Gen. 3:16) the curse will come to all who follow any for any reason whatsoever, to those who do not follow Christ and Him alone. From members of the congregation who follow the one behind the pulpit, to those who place the Word of God above God Himself, or the traditions of the church they attend above His word, the more that we look, the more we can see that this form of pride encompasses nearly every individual on the planet.
There is a place where we can find rest from this curse, and few there have been I believe that have found it, and I regret to say that more than likely not one person ever, save for our Lord, has ever been able to remain there. It is the balance of loving your neighbor, (Mark 12:31) and not caring one bit what they think of you, for the concern is only how the Lord God sees us.
It seeks no personal accolades, it serves no other but God, it puts all concerns of personal well-being, of the thoughts of actions for the benefit of self and the concern of what others may or may not think of us far away. It looks to no one but Christ for security, while understanding that others have been blessed with some modicum of wisdom that can be used to further glorify God. Those who can find no personal virtue within themselves will attach themselves to those that have in their eyes the virtues they themselves desire to have, and will then begin to see themselves as having value and worth because of that attachment, and by doing so, will bring the curse upon themselves.
Our God is a jealous God, (Exo. 34:14) He will have no other one or nothing placed ahead of Him, in fact, anything in our lives in this area is an acknowledgment that He alone is not enough to fulfill all of our needs. “Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.” (Eccl. 1:2) If we cannot find virtue in ourselves, we will attach ourselves to those we believe have this attribute, even if no one notices, we will then feel as if we have value within ourselves.
The tentacles of pride reach into all of the creation of God in the lives of men, except to the throne of God, to Christ Himself, the only One that we should ever be attached to. “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” (Prov. 14:12)