Self-Focused Statements to Avoid

There are some statements a leader makes which originate in pride.

“Pride goes before destruction…” Proverbs 16:18

We are all capable of pride. Some of us more than others.

I’ve learned over the years – mostly from my own personal growth and experience – many times things we may label as our leadership style or personality are actually a leader’s personal battle with pride.

Pride is very dangerous.

“Do you see a man who is wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.” Proverbs 26:12

Knowing how dangerous pride can be and how much God hates it, I’m continually trying to evaluate places where pride creeps into my own leadership.

I decided to list some statements I’ve heard – some I’ve said and some I’ve simply thought. In checking my own heart and motives it was like an “ouch” gut check.

10 statements a leader makes from pride:

“I need to know about everything happening around here.”

“If I don’t do it – it won’t be done right.”

“Look what I’ve accomplished.”

“I don’t think there’s anything I can learn from this.”

“They’ll do what I say or else.”

“If I left all this would fall apart.”

“Did you hear about what I said/did?”

“I don’t need anyone looking over my shoulder.”

“It wasn’t my fault.”

“I know I’m right.”

So, do any of those sting?

What can we do leaders? How do we battle a pride pastors?

  • We above all else “guard our heart.” (Proverbs 4:23)
  • We let people in – we value others. (Romans 12:16, Philippians 2:3)
  • We recognize who we are and who God is. (Ecclesiastes 5:2)
  • We remember that we are created for His glory — not our own. (Isaiah 43:7)

It’s a constant battle.

As leaders, we’ve been given a platform. We have the opportunity to build a name. We value our work done for the good of others. God can use the voice we develop for His good. He does it everyday.

No denying that.

But we must be careful not to let pride be the motivation in building our seat of influence. Or in taking credit that belongs to Him and should be shared with others.

Someone said humility is not thinking less of yourself. It’s thinking of yourself less. (And, others more.)

That should become a discipline of our life.

Thankfully God gives “grace to the humble”. (James 4:6)

And wisdom.

“When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.” Proverbs 11:2

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This article originally appeared on and is reposted here by permission.

Ron Edmondson
Ron Edmondson

Ron Edmondson is the pastor of Immanuel Baptist Church in Lexington, Kentucky. He revitalized two churches and planted two more.