In the Narnia Chronicle The Horse and His Boy, Bree is a talking horse. He considers the boy, Shasta, a “foal” who is badly in need of training. Often the horse’s arrogant opinions reflect an air of superiority. He thinks of himself as a brave warhorse, possessing great skill and courage. Yet, when he hears the roar of a great lion, he flees and leaves the other members of his party unprotected.
Later, Bree meets Aslan the lion, who is king of Narnia. The horse admits that he has been an arrogant and frightened failure. Aslan praises Bree for admitting his shortcomings.
The Bible tells us: “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall” (Prov. 16:18). Life has a way of exposing the flaws of our own personal vanity. But learning the hard lesson that “pride goes before destruction” can become a turning point in which we intentionally shift our focus away from exalting self. Then, as we adopt a humble spirit before God and man, we can become channels of wisdom to others. “When pride comes, then comes shame; but with the humble is wisdom” (Prov. 11:2).
Promoting our own importance leads to stumbling. But focusing on glorifying God and meeting the needs of others gives us the perspective of the wise.
Blessed Savior, make me humble,
Take away my sinful pride;
In myself I’m sure to stumble,
Help me stay close by Your side. —D. De Haan
Pride brings shame. Humility brings wisdom.