I’ve been thinking for some time about the connection between yeast and pride. Our God fusses about yeast, and our Jewish friends make a big deal about getting all of the yeast out of their house once a year for a feast. But yeast is not what God hates. He hates what the yeast does to the dough. It causes it to puff up and have lots of hot air in it – which makes it taste good to us. The real problem is not yeast but pride. It does the same thing as yeast does, but to humans. We are all puffed up about something, and consequently full of hot air. God wants us to know that we are to have no pride, because we can accomplish nothing he has not been in us doing – nothing worth while, that is.
As I look back over my life and my career, I realize how blessed I have been. To have a job, a profession, which made me so glad that some mornings I just laughed out loud to know that I got paid to do that which I so loved. And I have been successful. I know I have made better the lives of several hundred children. Still, I could have done none of this without the Lord.. I remember many times when, faced with troubled or just plain contrary children, the right words miraculously came out of my mouth. Was that me? By no means. God ran my practice and worked with those children through me. All I needed was to open my mouth and let Him have at it. Many times I was suprised to hear myself say some of the things I said. It was like magic.
With this though, all the pride I have has to leave. None of this was my doing. He guided me into this work, by a very circuitous path and he gave me joy and success. He did this. Not I.
David Pytches, in his book "Spiritual Gifts in the Local Church", comments (page 135) that “some people have recurring childhood dreams. ……. Some revelations may be for our guidance”. I had such a dream as a youngster, over and over. I was running from something evil (typical) and I had to go through a room with nothing in it, just a door in and another door on the other side to open and go through. The hard part was that each new door was just a bit smaller than the one I had just gone through. I remember having to work very hard to make myself smaller and smaller so that when I came to the last door, I would fit through it. The times I made it, the door was tiny, and when I entered, I knew I had defeated the chaser and that I was safe for all time. The room was small, a corner fireplace burning brightly, a comfy chair and a stack of books. Outside was a small walled English type garden. Maybe I think this is Heaven? Maybe. But, this dream was telling me, even as a child, that the kingdom of God is not entered by anyone who is full of hot air. John the Baptist tells us that he must decrease that Jesus might increase. We are told "strait is the gate and narrow is the way". Wow!
Decreasing, letting out the hot air of our pride, is a hard thing, but the door is very narrow through which we must pass to be with God. I am sure that God was telling me this, even as a child, and now, as a senior citizen I realize that all my accomplishments are as hot air, unless I know and credit Him, who gave them to me.
I am working on letting out more and more hot air, and I have been full of it! Such a lesson! But God started early on me and I am seeing what must be done to be fit for the kingdom of God. May we all meet there one day, free of hot air.