Conversely, every person rescued by Christ has been given a standing of the highest order, and has been promoted to the heavenlies beside Christ (Eph.2:6) despite an abysmally poor performance. That affects a person’s self-perception, his fears and anxieties, her confidence, her outlook, his abilities, her behavior, and his thinking.
Having seen how naturally we Christians are addicted to works, I was intrigued by Tchividjian’s question, “Why do I avoid the gospel?” He claims it’s because …the gospel makes me disappear. The gospel obliterates me, in a sense. Suddenly life is no longer about my little world and my standards and rules and goals and preferences. It’s no longer about me and what I want. It’s no longer about my strengths and achievements and attainments. The gospel erases us, in that sense, which is why we avoid it. But that erasing of self is the key to our freedom. The gospel doesn’t take you deeper into yourself; the gospel takes you away from yourself (121).
Tchividjian says what can’t be repeated often enough: the way to defeat the practice of sin is counter-intuitive: stop spending so much time peering into the darkness of your soul and spend more time peering into the light of the gospel. He puts it this way: In short, I spend way too much time thinking about me and what I need to do, and far too little time thinking about Jesus and what he’s already done. And what I’ve discovered, ironically, is that the more I focus on my need to get better, the worse I actually get. I become neurotic and self-absorbed. Preoccupation with my performance over Christ’s performance for me makes me increasingly self-centered and morbidly introspective (174).
Ahhh, love the smell of the gospel!