Pride is a strange thing. We think it's good, we think it's bad. As a parent I steer my children away from being proud and puffed up, yet I want them to take pride in their work and do things well. I don't want them to be falsely modest nor full of themselves, but honest and humble as they consider their Creator in giving them whatever good gifts they have. As a parent I must temper the pride I have in anything my children do lest I puff them up or insult other parents who may believe that I think my children are better than theirs, thereby insinuating that I am better than them. It can be a slippery slope, and after raising five, and with six still "in progress" I haven't yet found the perfect balance.
With that said, I am proud of Troy. For better or for worse I'm proud of him.
I'm proud of him for entering the high school talent show, for not being too self conscious and afraid of what others think of him to step out and perform for the enjoyment of those who could be the very ones to criticize him and tear him down.
I'm proud of him for choosing to sing a song that speaks of God's love to sinners, and the price that Jesus Christ paid to show that love, for not being too self conscious and afraid of what others think of him to step out and testify of His Savior to a crowd who might very well criticize him and tear him down.
I'm proud of his willingness to put himself on the line with that testimony. Knowing that he will become a target for the enemies of the gospel. Knowing that some will criticize his every move and pick apart every fault and inconsistency in his testimony. Knowing that when he fails to uphold the standards of godly perfection he may have an audience applauding his weaknesses. Knowing that obedience comes with a price.
I'm proud of him for standing confidently before the hundreds in the audience and singing "By Your Side" with strength and confidence to the very best of his ability.
I'm proud of him for telling us this week that his greatest prayer was that the words to that song would touch the heart of someone in his school.
I am happy for him for winning the talent show, but not proud. By the time the judges made their decision my heart had already concluded where it stood in the whole matter.
I hope my pride is founded in righteousness for the glory of God, because it was the testimony of Christ that Troy gave on the stage that caused my eyes to well with tears, and my heart with pride.