Blog by Shelly Beach
& Consultant © 2017
Award-winning author of
The Silent Seduction of
Self-Talk, Love Letters
from the Edge, Precious
Lord, Take My Hand,
Heart & other fiction & nonfiction titles
We’re imperfect people. All of us. Definitely me, and yes, you too.
Even the most godly Christian you’ve ever known is an imperfect sinner. And if they’re honest, they can humbly point out their flaws because they know them well and do battle with them on a regular basis.
But we can’t be complacent about our gossiping tongue, bitter spirit, unforgiving heart, angry outbursts, private moments with porn, potty mouths, condescension toward (spouse, children, siblings, boss, MIL, you know who). Not at least if we claim to love God.
This is a lifetime calling. As long as we’re still on earth, we’re going to be working on “the sin[s] that so easily besets us.” You know…the moment when you say or do the things you regret the next instant. But as followers as disciples of Jesus, we should all desire to become like Him. This means intentionally assessing our motives, priorities, attitudes, and actions on a regular basis.
Accountability is a necessary, bittersweet part of growing.
Our love for God should compel us to please Him. He has made us complete in Christ, but we to become more like Him as the Spirit of God transforms us. This is a lifelong process. Unfortunately, we don’t go from sinners to perfect people the moment we receive Christ, even though positionally in the spiritual realm, God sees us as sinless and complete because He sees Jesus’ righteousness in place of our sin.
Instead, we grow as we learn more about God’s love for us. The more we know Him, the more we love Him and release the rights we have falsely believed we had to rule life our way. We begin to substitute His will for ours, which is the essence of Jesus’ heart. His every breath, word, motive, and act were to glorify the Father.
Doing “good things” has nothing to do with a moral checklist.
We measure “good things” by arbitrary preferences or personal and cultural biases. Or we do good things to bolster our pride, gain value in others’ eyes fit in, or for other self-serving reasons.
God defines doing good things as doing the things Jesus would do and being conformed to His character. Paul said, “This will continue until we are . . . mature, just as Christ is, and we will be completely like him” (Ephesians 4:13 CEV).
As believers, we all are works in process. God is on our side and wants to build our character so we become more like Jesus, not so we live from a list of dos and don’ts.
We become like Jesus as our minds are transformed and renewed.
Transformation is more than following a list of dos and don’ts. It’s learning to live by the fruit of the Spirit–fruit that grows naturally from the spiritual nutrients that flow through our lives through the power of the Holy Spirit.
We lost much of the divine image of God when Adam sinned in the garden of Eden. Jesus restored it on the cross, and our calling is to show the world God’s goodness reflected in Jesus as we bear His image.
What a humbling partnership and blessed calling. Amazing grace…