Some groups and people within Christianity push a “do more, try harder” moralism that robs us of the joy and freedom that Jesus has already paid to secure for us. When the goal becomes control instead of soaking in the conquest of our Savior, we actually begin to shrink spiritually.
Here’s how to have joy in the Lord:
1. Believe deeper instead of trying to behave better. Spiritual growth does not happen by first trying to behave better, but by believing deeper – i.e., believing in bigger, deeper, and brighter ways what Christ has already secured for you. Once you become a deep thinker on these matters, better behavior always follows.
Don’t get the cart in front of the horse.
The bottom line is this: Because of Christ’s work on the cross on your behalf, God does not dwell on your sin the way you do. So, relax and rejoice…. and you’ll actually start getting better.
The irony, of course, is that it’s only when we stop obsessing over our own need to be holy and focus instead on the beauty of Christ’s holiness, that we actually become more holy! Not to mention, we become a lot easier to live with!
So get off the performance treadmill by trying to do better all the time, and simply rest in Christ’s completed work. Only then will you truly get better.
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