The Christian life is a continual reminder that I’m not good enough. I thought that was just a mental assent I made when I accepted Christ. I didn’t realize it is something I have to face every day. It is truth, it belongs to me.
But I resent it. I try to live as though I can fix this. As though it is not such a big deal. If I can believe that, I can believe that everything is okay or, at least, it will be after I’m able to make things right.
Yet, for some unfortunate reason, this doesn’t work. Evidently, I’m missing something. Something huge. So, what could it be?
I’m missing the fact that I accepted Christ because I saw that I wasn’t good enough and there was nothing else I could do about it. I reconciled myself–in action, though clearly not fully in heart–to the fact that I am blemished and defiled by sin and its affects. I didn’t accept it because I thought it was a pretty thought, but because it was true and I was being offered the antidote.
What I’m realizing now, though, is that the antidote not only saves me, it makes what I do for myself of no affect. It neutralizes my ambitions because they flow from a heart that cannot be trusted. It factors in grace because self-righteous living gives birth to no good thing.
On my own I’m powerless and with Christ I remain powerless in the flesh but mighty in the spirit–His Spirit. I turn away from trusting myself and relying on my own efforts to care for and support myself. God knows I use the wrong things to comfort myself and justify what I’m doing. I need to be broken free of sinful obsessions that are too natural for me to confront on my own. It is impossible for me to know how to “take myself down”–I’m not gifted in self-mortification.
I rely on Christ to do that. I rely on Him to adjust the seat of who I am from being nourished by the flesh to being nourished by the spirit. I rely on Him to make me of no account in the equation because I don’t advance myself in Christ. I rely on Him to relieve me from my discouragement that flows from a desire to deliver self from the jaws of death that I find at Calvary. I rely on Him to give me a new picture of what being me is supposed to entail. Ding, ding, ding! The game has timed out, leaving Christ with the only score on the board. Well, folks, it looks like Elaine’s loss is Christ’s gain! (Hallelujah.)