From personal experience, one of the dangers of many BAM people is pride.
Pride is such an ugly thing yet many of us struggle with it on a regular basis. Satan wants us to begin to think that we are good enough in our own strength and that we don’t need the power of God. We want the approval of others so we begin to forsake the life of humility and turn to a life of pride.
What do you trust in?
I was reading the Psalms the other morning and came across the familiar verse that says, “Some trust in horses and chariots, but we trust in the Name of the Lord our God.”
Success is something that all of us like. We love to be good at something! We love for others to notice so that we feel significant.
Sometimes when I begin to look at the BAM business that the LORD has blessed me with, I begin to think of how well I have done. It is easy to begin to take credit and want others to see how “wonderful” MY business is.
I believe that the key is who you place your trust in and who you give glory for your success and your failure. I constantly have to remind myself of who has given us the “chariot” and who continues to keep it going.
Where is your trust?
On a pedestal
Another area where pride can creep in is when you return back to your home country. In some sense you are greeted with a heros welcome. You are welcomed back to your churches and family members; all of them who treat you as a special person.
Some people may be amazed that you would leave your life of comfort in your home land and move to a “closed country.”
If I am not careful, I can easily begin to think more highly of myself that I ought to. Pride begins to take control again and raise its ugly head.
Remember that your life as a BAM person is a life of obedience. Your work overseas is no more important than your friends who live back in their home countries serving Jesus with all of their hearts.
Make it a habit to encourage your network back home, reminding them how important their role is in the Kingdom work.
The comparison game
Another area to watch out for is the pride that comes from comparison.
You would think that BAM people would want everyone to succeed better than themselves, but I find it easy to begin to compare myself with others around me.
So-and-so is so much better than me in this area, but I am much better than him in that area. We think, “I wish I was more of an evangelist like ____!”
We begin to look for areas where we are good so that we can feel better about our ministry.
Remember that we are all in this together! We are all working for the Lord…so let’s encourage one another daily. Don’t let your pride get in the way of cheering and encouraging others on with the gifts that God has given them.