PRIDE: In the Lord's explanation of the Parable of the Sower (Mt. 13:19-23), the proud man has hardened his heart (v. 19), in that, he refuses to accept that he is incapable of living a good enough life to be considered righteous. He foolishly believes his self-discipline and works can get him to heaven. In other words, he is religious. But there is a serious flaw in this man's thinking; because of his pride, he continually forgets what kind of man he is (Jam. 1:24). As I understand it, religion and pride are synonymous. This man's religion is vain, and he is lost.
PERIL: The timid man listens to the Gospel message from God's Word (the "seed" which is the power of God unto salvation - Lk. 8:11; Rom. 1:16), and believes it (v. 20-21). But, because of persecution from others (family, friends, employer, etc.), he cowers in fear, and fails to become fruitful for Christ. This man is saved, but he has been neutralized by fear.
PRIORITIES: The self-centered man also listens and accepts the Gospel, and although he believes it (v. 22), he gradually loses focus upon the things of the Lord, and he returns to his old ways of "looking out for number one." Instead of giving and serving others, he is constantly acquiring and wanting to be served. As a result, this saved individual has been neutralized by his misplaced priorities, and is also unfruitful for the Lord.
There is one group of people who, hearing and believing the Gospel, remain faithful the rest of their lives. This group endeavors to walk in the Spirit so that they do not fulfill the lusts of their flesh (Gal. 5:16). This group makes every effort to live in such a way that they are respected and get along with others (Acts 2:47; Rom. 12:18). In fact, they are so successful at being a "peculiar people," that other ask about their faith (1 Pet. 2:9; 3:15)! As a result, people are saved (v. 23)!
The humble, courageous, unselfish believer is always PRODUCTIVE for God!