Grace For The Journey
You hear a lot of talk in the church about “self-esteem” these days. Self-esteem is a term used in psychology to reflect someone’s overall evaluation or appraisal of his or her own worth. Self-esteem, also known as self-concept, encompasses both beliefs and emotions. A self-concept based on the truth (“I am a great sinner in need of an even greater Savior”) is good. A self-concept based on a lie (“I’m a pretty good person; certainly not as bad as most”) is bad.
Only the power of the Gospel frees us to live in the light of the truth with freedom, laughter, joy, and faithfulness to Jesus. You see, the Gospel frees us from shading the truth about ourselves. We don’t have to make ourselves out to be better than we actually are, because God loved us while we were sinners and He still loves us while we are sinners.
The power of the Gospel allows us to take off our masks and stop pretending we are holy and pious. We were sinners when we were first saved and we are still sinners today. The difference is that we are now saved from our sins. Knowing this truth, believing this truth, and understanding this truth allows us to accept who we are: fully accepted and blessed in the Beloved.
The Bible says in Ephesians 1:3-6, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.”
How incredibly loved you really are! God the Father sent God His Son to die on a cross for you! There is no greater blessing in the Beloved than to know that you are now forever accepted, because you were bought with His precious blood on Golgotha’s Hill.
You cannot lose your acceptance. You cannot diminish His love for you. You cannot make Him angry with you. The right way for you to view yourself is clothed in the righteousness of Christ, perfectly pleasing in the sight of God.
Now, note that I did not say “perfect.” None of us is perfect, and we won’t be until we get to the other side of the grave. But along the way, because of the finished work of Christ, we are perfectly pleasing in the sight of God. And that truth should impact the way we view ourselves and feel about ourselves, even in the light of our next sin.
Yes, we hate sin. Yes, we are filled with a godly sorrow when we sin and recognize our own unworthiness. But we are still sinners saved by grace; the more unworthy we feel ourselves to be, the more evidence we have for the unconditional and unending love of God in Christ.
People may doubt your salvation. Satan may whisper in your ear that you are far too unworthy to be an object of God’s love. But don’t you listen to it for a moment!
Remember what God says in His Word, “He that spared not His own son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?” (Romans 8:32).
It is important to know, remember, and live by your true identity in Christ. The following Bible verses will help you see yourself as God sees you.
Through faith in Jesus, I am a child of God and I belong to Him:
John 1:12 – “Yet to all who received Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God.”
I am loved by God and nothing can separate me from His love:
1 Peter 2:9 – “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light.”
Romans 8:35-39 – “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written: ‘For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
I am chosen by God:
Ephesians 1:4 – “For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight.”
I am forgiven and my sin-debt is paid:
Colossians 2:13-14 – “When you were dead in your sins and in the uncircumcision of your sinful nature, God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins, having cancelled the written code, with its regulations, that was against us and that stood opposed to us; He took it away, nailing it to the cross.”
I am strengthened for all tasks to which God calls me:
Philippians 4:13 – “I can do everything through Christ who gives me strength.”
The Holy Spirit is with me:
John 14:16 – “And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever.”
I have peace with God through my Lord Jesus Christ:
Romans 5:1 – “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
I am never alone – God will not leave me:
Hebrews 13:5 – “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, ‘Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.’”
A right view of you is you are His today, tomorrow, and forever more.
This is God’s Word For Today … This Is Grace For The Journey
Rest and Rejoice in this eternal truth!
Ephesians 4:7 – “But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.”
Hebrews 4:16 – “Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”