Is the goal to be like Christ or to allow Christ to live in us? The Killing Insecurity Series would be incomplete without talking about the expectation for Christians to be exactly like Jesus. This causes all kinds of insecurity and disappointment.The truth is without God we can do nothing.
Striving to be like Jesus is different than abiding in Him and allowing His nature to shine through us. One puts the focus on us, the other puts the focus on Jesus.
We can’t will ourselves to be like Jesus. If we could be like Jesus on our own efforts, there would be no need for a Savior, or for the old man to die. We were dead, blind, wretched, and without hope before Christ. It’s only because of what Jesus did that we can live a holy life. And my sweet friends it’s a process, a journey. We are saved by faith and being sanctified by God’s Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit can be trusted with our spiritual growth. We don’t willfully sin, ignore God’s Word or warnings, or neglect His instructions. We also don’t put pressure on ourselves to be like Jesus. We abide, He produces fruit.
So here’s the good news:
In Christ, the righteousness of Christ is counted as yours. We can’t earn God’s love, approval, or do enough good deeds to be counted righteous on our own. It’s only through Jesus that we are made right with God. This takes the pressure off. It’s not a contest, competition, or a burden.
Being in relationship with God, abiding in Him, and cultivating relationship with Him leads to heart transformation. Heart transformation leads to life transformation. We are changed when we are saved. However, we don’t immediately act like Jesus in every way and every day. If you’ve ever grown plants, you know that when a seed is planted it does not immediately bolt into a full grown plant. It takes time. Another example is a baby. They don’t come out of the womb talking, walking, and running. Growth takes time.
God knows our weaknesses and is not intimidated by them. If we think God is judging us continually, walking with Jesus will be stressful. Truth is God knew what He was getting when He chose you. He knows everything about everything.
Lastly, aside from creating insecurity, the pressure to be like Christ creates unnecessary stress. God wants to shine through us, not for us to try to generate our own light. Give yourself permission to be human. 🙂 Being human isn’t a license to sin, it is permission to rely fully on a Jesus.
I don’t know about you, but I’m fully aware that I’m human. Without Jesus I have no ability to live like Him. So let’s rest in what He’s done and trust His leadership, guidance, and ability to transform us. Let’s also be aware that others need grace and mercy as well. Though I’d be nice, we can truly only expect Jesus to be 100% like Jesus all the time. Everyone else will miss the mark in some way.