Trying to be better is way over-rated. It’s more beneficial to be one who is saved and out seeking others who are lost.
It’s the whole “better person” idea that is problematic, along with the whole idea of avoiding sinners, as if that would help you avoid sinning.
Marti often points out to me that she never wanted to be a better person. She knew she was a sinner and she was just glad to be saved, and all she wants to do now is tell everyone in the whole world about Jesus so they can be saved too. It’s not about being better; it’s about being saved. It’s only recovering Pharisees like me who know all about trying to be better. It is a flawed concept.
We can never be better anyway. We can’t change a hair on our heads. Only God can change us, and those changes come by way of the Holy Spirit. And those changes don’t necessarily mean we will be “better.” We will be people with love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, and faithfulness, but not necessarily “better.” “Better” has different definitions and connotations depending on where you are and what group you are in. Forget “better;” think “saved.”
As a matter of fact, I believe that as we grow, we will be more and more aware of our sinfulness and need of a savior, not less. A better person doesn’t need a savior. Better people need a club of better people around them so they can maintain their idea of “betterness.” The only group we really want to belong to is that group of gloriously happy saved sinners who have done nothing to deserve their salvation and can’t believe they get to have a place at the table of forgiveness with Jesus and all those in the kingdom of God.
You bring up an interesting point about being better. I am trying to figure out how spiritual maturity fits into all of this. I can be Christ-like and prefer that to being better. In the end my sin still convicts me and that I don’t see ending till eternity. So I’ll forget about being better but have Jesus live in me, and continue to categorize myself as the worst of sinners saved by Jesus Christ.
What do you think? Or is that what you said?
Amen to this: “The only group we really want to belong to is that group of gloriously happy saved sinners who have done nothing to deserve their salvation and can’t believe they get to have a place at the table of forgiveness with Jesus and all those in the kingdom of God.”