Overcoming Pride — Achieving Humility
Our problem is conforming with the will of God. We don't know how to yield to him. We are reluctant to submit to his judgments. We are not able to imitate Christ humbled and crucified. We have not found a way to love our enemies, or to see them as instruments used by God. to train us in self-denial.
This is the hazard. Our eyes are blinded by self-love. We do good things and then become proud. We think that we are far advanced as religious people and then look down on our neighbor. Our spiritual pride deepens our blindness. We are beyond help, short of a miracle of grace.
Outright sinners can be reformed with less difficulty than those who hide under a cloak of false virtue.
The spiritual life does not consist in holy practices that are mere outward appearances. It actually consists in knowing the infinite greatness and goodness of God, It includes an admission of our weakness and our proclivity to evil. It is an act of loving God and denying ourselves. It means renouncing our own will and accepting God's will. The only life-giving motive for any spiritual practice is to please God, because we love God.
Lawrence Scupoli: The Spiritual Combat