At times it's easy for me to think of myself more highly than I ought (Romans 12:3) and yet to not even realize that I'm doing it. Recently, my job has revealed this subtle problem to me again.
At my job, we make new drawings and changes to drawings to match customer orders. When I first begin this job almost three months ago, I didn't yet have a computer and had no product knowledge. So for the first few weeks, I spent almost the entire time checking other people's work.
Checking is not fun, but it is necessary since it's so easy to make a mistake or think you changed something that you didn't. But there is a fun side to checking that can encourage pride in your thinking. Finding a mistake is actually somewhat fun. When this happens, my sinful nature thoughts come to my mind like: "You're so smart, smarter than the guy who drew this, I bet no one else would have caught that, how could someone be so dumb as to do that wrong, you're new and you caught that one."
After several weeks of these thoughts, I began to finally get jobs of my own to do. Soon, I was the one making the stupid mistakes that anyone should have caught. Some of them I could excuse, but others were obvious (once pointed out to me). By now I should have learned, but it's still tough. Pride still sneaks up instead of a humble spirit.
When I received a list of mistakes this morning in my email, my first thought was that the guy sending the email was wrong, that the guy who checked my work should have been more careful, that it's someone else's fault that I made a mistake.
In reality, I have to realize that God in his infinite wisdom has made me prone to error. I need the help of others to point out my mistakes and accept it with humility. I need to be careful not to think of myself as better than another. Through seeing my own mistakes in black and white at work, I am reminded that our sins though not often so obvious to others are clearly seen by God. If we confess our sins he will forgive us.
Lessons learned at work are good for life!