In a world that is constantly pushing us to be better people and self help books abound, I’m going to say something that’s just not that popular.
I’m not good enough and neither are you.
Not only that, but we never will be. No matter how many books we read or how hard we try, we’ll never measure up. Before we all get super depressed, let me unpack this a bit.
It’s the start of a new year and I decided I was going to do something to better myself. I ordered a brand new Bible and set out to read the entire thing in one year. After about 12 days and 3/4ths of the way through Genesis I have come face to face with a sobering fact. All of the folks that we consider to be pillars of the Judeo-Christian world were really messed up people. Seriously, they were all complete sinners.
Adam deliberately disobeyed God’s commands causing sin and evil to enter the world. Cain murdered his brother out of jealousy. Noah had a little too much to drink. Abraham failed to trust God and lied about being married to Sarah. Isaac followed in his father’s footsteps and lied about being married to Rebekah. Jacob lied, cheated, and stole a birth right that wasn’t his and his son Joseph was a bragger. Out of all of these folks God’s plan of blessing, grace, and redemption took place. God uses broken and messed up people to do his work.
This is good news for us! It isn’t and never has been about our own merit. Paul, writing to the church in Ephesus, puts it this way:
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”
Ephesians 2:8-10 (ESV)
So, instead of trying a little harder, let’s trust in Jesus, who has done all the work for us. Through faith in him, we are forgiven of all of our sins and will be used to change the world around us. Even though we aren’t good enough, He is, and will continue to move through His people. Our God loves to use broken people to do extraordinary things.