"The Israelites said to them, if only we had died by the Lord's hand in Egypt! There we sat around pots of meat and ate all the food we wanted, but you have brought us out into this desert to starve this entire assembly to death" (Exodus 16:3).
Again, "As Pharaoh approached, the Israelites looked up, and there were the Egyptians, marching after them. They were terrified and cried out to the Lord. They said to Moses, 'was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? Didn't we say to you in Egypt, ' leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!" (Exodus 14:10-12).
There are over 40 different references in the Bible on incidents of self-pity, and these wild emotions led to God's wrath against the Israelites. Job was even bold in his self-pity when he declared "I loathe my very life; therefore I will give free rein to my complaint and speak out in the bitterness of my soul" (Job 10:1). This feeling of self-pity can evoke a lot of negative emotions, such as unworthiness, boastfulness like in Job's situation, and strong feelings of hatred. This feeling was expressed when the people wanted to stone Moses and Aaron (Numbers 14:10).
How Can We Control Self-Pity?
The emotional feeling of rejection forms part of the human personality. We all suffer in controlling this emotion. Biblically, self-pity is a sin and leads many people astray. This becomes the Devil's hot-bed. He works on our feelings against God and turns us into grumblers and complainers. When we pity ourselves, we operate outside the command of love for God and others. We withdraw our love from others and concentrate on loving ourselves. I can recall may times when the Lord has given a word to Charis, saying that He has a message [of rebuke] for me. My reaction, like that of many other people, is one of defending my actions, when in truth I was really wrong. This deceiving spirit of self-pity is evident when God chastens and judges us. During such times, we often pity ourselves. It is very dangerous in that we usually do not recognise it as sin, and neither do we realize that this strengthens our 'old man'.
As a consequence, we deprive ourselves the opportunity to overcome our weaknesses. At the root of self-pity is our reluctance in admitting our faults. I always express gratefulness when God attacks my weaknesses and points me to correction. This is the ministry I inherited from God: to point people to His truth and will.
Furthermore, as many of you are aware, the Lord speaks through prophetic visions to Charis. This gift is commonly known as a 'word of knowledge' (1 Corinthians 12:1-2). He shows her in a vision the wrong behaviour of a believer and then gives a word of correction. We have inquired from the Lord for many believers who humbly took the Lord's rebuke of them on some ungodly behaviours. There were however, some self-righteous (pity and egotistical) people who accused the Lord of being mistaken. This sin has resulted in them not hearing from the Lord for their own well-being. I tell you the truth in Christ Jesus: the Lord has showed us that He withdraws His discipline from disobedient and self-righteous Christians. We are all sinners, and as a result we are in constant need for correction (Romans 3:23).
There were brethren who fellowshipped with us in this ministry, who scorned the Lord's discipline and left to spread malicious gossip. The Lord exposed their folly by revealing some of the wrong things they were busy doing. The humble ones returned, acknowledging God's truthfulness and Holiness, while the self-righteous ones went off bearing sour fruit.
In conclusion, the Lord calls on all Christians to walk in humility of heart and in obedience as a counter attack against self-pity. The fruit of the Holy Spirit gives us refreshing and God-centred feelings (Galatians 5:22). Remember the goal of our salvation is to be with the Lord, and the Bible says, "Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in His holiness" (Hebrews 12:10 NIV). "…without holiness no one will see the Lord" (Hebrews 10:14 NIV).
I encourage you: your self-pity is loathsome to God and you hinder the Holy Spirit to do His work of transforming you into the likeness of Christ, so STOP YOUR GRUMBLING AND COMPLAINING! STOP OVERESTIMATING OF YOURSELF and become a humble servant. You are called to serve and experience testing, which is the way of the cross to be identified as a true soldier of the cross (Philippians 2:6-11).
Are you in the habit of pitying yourself, grumbling, complaining, or overestimating yourself, instead of humbling yourself before God? Here is a