I have a problem with myself, and the problem is me. I know this statement may make you tilt your head and raise your voice in an unsure question, but it makes sense in my mind. I have a problem with myself, and the problem is me. Don’t misunderstand me though, I like me. I like me a lot (most days), and sure there are things about me I really don’t like that much, like how my facial hair never comes in completely right and a beard is probably an impossibility in the future, but overall I think I’m pretty okay. And this my friends, is my problem: I shouldn’t think I’m okay.
Let me explain. I’m not saying I should hate myself. On the contrary, I should love myself (but in a totally non-arrogant way). What I am saying is I should never think I’m simply okay. “Okay” in the adjective form means “average, adequate, acceptable, or mediocre when compared to good”, and this is not how I should view myself. My nature is often more than fine with accepting adequate, but this is an absolutely horrible way to exist. The danger of thinking I’m a “pretty okay guy” a lot of the time is I become complacent with my thoughts and actions, even my sins. So often we, and I’m including myself here, find ourselves playing the comparison game with other people’s righteousness against our own. I believe we do this because deep down we hate to feel convicted by God’s perfect righteousness, which is the person of Christ. We all do this. How often have we done something we know we shouldn’t have, and then said, “Well, I didn’t go as far as he did with his girlfriend, so I’m okay”, or “She said far worse things about her than I did”, or even “Hey, I haven’t done crack or anything, so I’m good”? Almost every day if we are honest with ourselves, and most of us don’t take the time or are too afraid to really be honest deep down with the person in the mirror. As much as Satan is out to destroy our testimony, it’s sad to say that often he doesn’t really have to do much, because we are more than capable of doing it ourselves.
In the this Christian life you are your own worst enemy when you use comparative righteousness. I feel so inadequate in my actions towards Christ, not because I don’t love him, but because I find myself having times where I struggle to show it in everything I do. When Paul said in 1 Timothy that he was the “worst of sinners”, I understand his sentiment. I have moments where I feel the same. It’s a constant struggle to keep my eyes on God’s perfect righteousness instead of comparison shopping with someone else’s, and often I fail. It’s so easy for me to look back on my life and see the fruits of my failures, the relationships and friendships I helped destroy, the ways I have hurt people, the times I let fear chase away an opportunity to pour into someone or challenge myself, and even the ways I have wasted my gifts and talents. It’s easy because I often have so little faith in the grace of God, and how he will use everything to complete his perfect will, and I have to always remind myself of the promise that God is bigger than any failure I’ve ever committed or will commit.
The last thing I want to be is “okay”. I want to be extraordinary, and the crazy thing is I already am because Christ has saved me with his grace and set me apart to be a picture of him on this earth. We should never be satisfied with just “okay”. We should never be satisfied period with where we are in our walk. It’s taken me a long to understand this, and I must be reminded daily of it. We are capable of so much more. I am capable of so much more, not because of anything I do, but because of everything Christ has already done and will do. So let’s work on being extraordinary. Because the last thing I want to hear from Christ is: “You did okay.”