When we pray to God for His blessing, He does not examine our performance to see if we are worthy.
Rather, He looks to see if we are trusting in the merit of His Son as our only hope for securing His blessing.
- JERRY BRIDGES
Whichever, it’s hard to remember not only were we saved by grace, but we continue to live only by grace every single day.
What happens to believers when we forget?
1. We become proud
We think God is pleased with us when we are pleased with us.
I feel good about myself when I give the saleslady at the door a glass of water, when I give up “my” time to sit with a friend, when I turn off my laptop early to give full attention to my husband. Isn’t God giddy to rain blessings on me now?
2. We feel guilty
But when I say no to the class on Israel, or I don’t check on my house-bound neighbor, or I’m not as friendly as I could have been to the lady beside me on the pew, I feel guilty. Surely God won’t want to bless me now.
Both perspectives are wrong. Because both are contingent upon me, not God.
Granted, our intentions/actions can either be God-honoring or God-dishonoring, but we don’t forfeit God’s mercy and blessing beyond natural consequence because of what we do or don’t do.
That wouldn’t be grace.
And grace means I no longer get what I deserve, based on my performance, but I get better.
Because Jesus is better than me. Not only at the moment of my salvation, but every second since.
* * *
Thoughts from Chapter One, “How Good Is Good Enough?”
in The Discipline of Grace by Jerry Bridges
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