It's a familiar scenario. A man is driving his family on vacation; let's say they're going from Chicago to California. His wife gently points out to him that she just saw a sign saying, "Welcome to Kentucky." Kentucky is definitely not between Chicago and California. Repeatedly, the Mrs. suggests that the Mr. stop and ask directions. Then she says, "I think we're lost." Will he stop and ask for directions? No! Maybe it's something in the male chromosome. Like most men, he's too proud to admit he's lost, and he's probably not going to end up where he hoped.
When it comes to our eternal destination, most of us hope to end up in heaven. Do you know what will keep a lot of people from ending up where they hope to? Pride. Many people are just too proud to admit that they're lost and that they can't get there on their own.
There's a powerful picture of this in the Word of God in 2 Kings 5. It's the story of a Syrian general named Naaman who discovers that he has the incurable disease of leprosy. None of his victories and none of his fame can help him, so he accepts advice to go to the prophet Elisha in Israel who prescribes something that is not his idea of how you get well: "Go, wash yourself seven times in the Jordan, and your flesh will be restored and you will be cleansed."
Naaman is furious. He says, "I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy." The general had brought money to pay for a cure, but the prophet wouldn't take it because he had his own idea of how he could get cured. If it wasn't God's idea, it wouldn't work though. Finally, "he went down," the Bible says, "and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy."
Naaman would go on dying until he swallowed his pride and did it God's way. We go on carrying the death penalty for our sin until we swallow our pride and come to God His way. God’s way is to lay aside all our attempts to get to Him through our own goodness, through our religion, through our spiritual connections, and to go to the cross of Jesus and let Him wash away our sins.
Jesus said, "No one comes to the Father except through Me" (John 14:6). That's because there was only one way to pay your death penalty. Someone had to die, and Jesus did. We're drowning and we can't possibly swim to God. Our only hope is Jesus, the Rescuer. We must abandon every other hope of heaven and grab Him like He's our only hope.
Don't let your pride make you miss heaven. Don’t be too proud to admit you've never really given yourself to Jesus even though everyone thinks you have, too proud to come to your spouse's faith, or too proud to lay aside depending on your religion. Let this be your Jesus-day.
If you're ready to finally put your total trust in Jesus to forgive you and rescue you, tell Him that now wherever you are. Tell Him, "Jesus, You are my only hope. Only You died for my sin. I admit I am lost. You came to find me, and I am Yours from this day on."
If you're too proud to admit that you need Him, you'll never end up in heaven. Pride can literally cost you your soul.