2 Corinthians 3:5 (ESV)
“Not that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but our sufficiency is from God.”
Yesterday I spoke at all three services at my church and was struck once again by the simplicity of the Gospel message that we so easily forget. We spend so much time trying to “be okay” or “be good enough” that we forget our kind, merciful God already knew we would never measure up.
This does not mean that He winks at sins or grades on the curve, but that in His incredible mercy, He chooses to bear our sin and forgive us ours. And. We. Don’t. Deserve. It. At. All. We could never earn it, either.
But sometimes living out this reality is hard. If shame in our own minds does not discourage us, then those around us might help to point out that we are not enough. Even so, we can be ok with acknowledging our need. Say what? We can? Yes. That is, if we are willing to let go of a few things . . .
Admitting our falling short is hard. It hurts. There is that part of us that wants to be acceptable. And so we strive to earn that acceptability . . . that we have already received. Christ already accepts us, but not so we can continue in sin. He wants to deliver us from the bondage of sin. Will we accept this lavish gift? Or will we still believe the lie that our good works could earn us to heaven?
We need to lay down our idea of salvation and have a paradigm shift. Turning around thoughts of insecurity and poor self worth, we proclaim our inferiority instead of letting it define or minimize us and claim Christ as our worth. Paul echoed this sentiment by calling himself “chief of sinners” in 1 Timothy 1:15. This was not Paul beating himself up, but a humble acknowledge that he knew what he was apart from Christ. Anything good in us is Christ alone.
Yep, I decided to go with a theme of “P’s” today. It helps a girl to remember. <Insert smile>. Perfectionism is not next to holiness, Perfectionism is based on good works or our ability and there is only One Who is perfect. This does not mean we don’t deny our flesh and seek God and His righteousness, but we know it is only by His grace as we abide in Him and study His word that we become like our Savior. Come and receive the grace of God today. He is your righteousness.