When we set our navigational course according to pride, we are setting ourselves up for destruction. This truth is illustrated by the captain of a ship who looked ahead and saw a light in the distance. He told his signalman to send a message to the other vessel to alter its course ten degrees south. But a message was relayed back to the captain to alter his course ten degrees north.
The captain was angered. He sent another message saying, "Alter your course ten degrees south. I am the captain."
Soon a message came back, "Alter your course ten degrees north. I am seaman third class Jones."
Immediately, the captain sent a third message, mustering all the authority at his command: "Alter your course ten degrees south. I am a battleship."
A message came back, "Alter your course ten degrees north. I am a lighthouse!"
If the captain had remained on course, he would have destroyed himself, his ship, all aboard, and the lighthouse. When we refuse to alter our course of pride, we risk destroying ourselves and others. The apostle John warned Diotrephes to change his course, but Diotrephes refused. He risked destruction by his rebellious action. We would do well to learn from him and to live our lives as servants, showing love and hospitality toward others.